When I was a kid and my mom was raising four of us on her own - ages 5 to 13 - she got the best job in the world.
My mom worked as an executive secretary for the maintenance VP at Frontier Airlines. A big, big deal.
Not only was she gainfully employed and well-respected among her peers, but SHE GOT FREE TRAVEL!
At about 12 years old, I started carrying an ID card that said my mom was an airline employee. I was able to walk up to the gate, flash my card and fly standby to anywhere Frontier Airlines flew .. and with advance planning, anywhere almost any other airline flew.
Of course, I took my mom along. And sometimes a brother or two. In fact at 13 or 14, I hopped a flight to Paris with my oldest brother and my mom for a whirlwind tour of Europe. This was what we knew as a "FAM" trip. We got to "familiarize" ourselves with a partner airline and ... uh, Europe!
Because of her job at Frontier Airlines, my mom was able to give us the world.
My mom continued to work there until we all became too old for those flight benefits, but by that time, I had "familiarized" myself with cities and countries and people from Rome to Bangkok.
Frontier Airlines has had a turbulent time in the past couple of decades... employee ownership, bankruptcy.. and it goes on the auction block today. Dallas-based Southwest offered $170 million for the airline yesterday.
People in Denver are upset at the possibility of losing the hometown airline with the cool animal paintings on the tails.
Whatever happens to Frontier, I will forever be grateful to the airline and my mom. I will always have the world.
Robin, Tempe, Arizona