Tuesday, June 4

crashpad hunting 101

My wings are pinned, my uniform is pressed, and my luggage is packed. What now? Find a place to live in New York, which in my case is a crashpad. A crashpad is a place for airline employees to stay in between trips. It is usually a house or apartment in which you eat, sleep, and get ready for work. Why do we need a crashpad? Well, many flight attendants commute to their base and need a place to stay the night before a trip starts. There are also times in which commuters only have one day off between two trips and don't have enough time to go home in between. Those are two among many reasons we need a crashpad. What makes a crashpad unique is that a lot of people share the same place. For instance, you would typically expect a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment to have 2-3 people living there...not in a crashpad. On average, there are 8+ people. Don't freak out yet. The good thing is that because we are all flying or home, we're never there at the same time. In fact, in smaller crashpads like the example I just used, you'll often find yourself at the crashpad alone. Also, since there are so many people staying there, the rent is affordable.

Now, how I found my crashpad.

After graduation, we had 4 days before we had to be back in NY for base orientation. We were provided a hotel for two nights so that we could find place to live one day and attend base orientation the next. The hard part is, there's no way to prepare for finding a crashpad. Thankfully, we had heard of one house that had openings so that was our first step. A few of us hopped on the subway, headed to the neighborhood that's infamous for crashpads, and walked around hoping to come across anything useful. After stopping a few flight attendants on the street and asking if they knew of any available crashpads (striking out every time), we came to the house. It was...not good. Really bad. Kinda scary. Very uncomfortable. Overall, not for me. Why didn't I love it? Well, it was coed, it has 8 beds per room (11 rooms total), there is a 0.5 mile uphill walk hike from where the crew shuttle picks us up...to name a few. As I sat in one of the bedrooms with my friends, my heart sank. "What in the world am I going to do?" I knew crashpad availability wasn't great with so many of us graduating and finding a place that met my preferences would be nearly impossible. It was at that point that one of my friends gave me the number to an all woman crashpad that she had heard good things about. It was a no-nonsense, mature group of women that all work for the same airline. I didn't have anything to lose and it sounded much better than my current situation, so I gave her a call. We chatted for a while as she asked questions about what I want from a crashpad, expectations, stipulations, etc. When she heard what house I was looking at, she insisted that I come and look at her place. I quickly accepted. As I made my way to the front of the building, I immediately felt more comfortable. The location was better and security was increased. I was given a tour of the apartment by another flight attendant and instantly fell in love. It was perfect. More than I could've asked for. Guys, my crashpad is not the norm. It's much, much nicer. And I was given an incredible price. Clearly, God wanted me here and I am praising Him for yet another measure of unmerited grace.

So, without further ado...here is my home away from home :)

Living room

Living room (window view)

Kitchen

Bathroom

Bedroom

Shelves for sheets/blankets

View from balcony

Balcony

My crashpad is a 2 bed, 2 bath apartment located directly across the street from where our crew shuttle picks up at! As you saw in the bedroom photo, there are two bunk beds per room. One room has 'cold beds' and the other room has 'hot beds'. A cold bed is a reserved for you only. When you arrive at your crashpad, you know you will always have that specific bed and are able to keep it made while you're gone. A hot bed is one in which you aren't guaranteed the same bed every time you stay there. When you leave you just fold up your sheets and comforter and grab whichever bed is available the next time you arrive. That is why we have the shelves to leave our sheets, blankets, and personal items for when we're away from the crashpad. Cold beds are typically more expensive than hot beds.

Explaining a crashpad is a difficult task. Honestly, I didn't full understand what it was until I saw it in person. So, forgive me if my explanation has been confusing. Overall, finding a crashpad isn't easy. There isn't a simple Google search that tells you how to do it, but somehow we all figured it out. Praise God for his continual provision over my life.

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