Do not try this at home kids. Sydney (AUS) – Photographic tales of an ex-Emirates flight attendant

Image Posted on Updated on

Do not try this at home... Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).













Photographic tales of an ex Emirates flight attendant – Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet!

Do not try this at home. Sydney, Australia Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

Do not try this at home, kids… 

One of the joys of working with an international airline is the diverse array of people you get to meet across a range of nationalities and cultures. Living away from home in an expat community like Dubai your friends become your family.

As a result, I became friends with a whole bunch people I met through Emirates, the Dubai Dragons rugby team and the Emirates Muppets (Emirates Airline rugby team) whom I had the privilege of touring with around the world to play in tournaments in Paris, Cardiff, Phuket, Johannesburg and more.

I became friends with pilots, lawyers, dentists, teachers, guys in construction and even a group of Sydney-based Emirates engineers who would travel up to Dubai every year to complete new aircraft certifications or renew old ones.

Many of those people I met in my time in Dubai became life-long friends and so almost every time I flew through Sydney on a 5-6 day DXB-SYD-AKL return trip, I’d catch-up with the Emirates engineer boys in the city or down at the seedy Cronulla establishment known as Northies. Invariably we’d spend the afternoon smashing beers and putting the world to right, then head back to one of the boys houses for more bevies and a BBQ, which is when this image was shot. It’s not too clever, but one of the lads was playing around with an aerosol can and a lighter after we finished our meal and me being me I had the camera out and I snapped this image. Looks impressive as a full colour photo, but I just love how the image came out in black and white and captured my imagination.

8 years on I miss jet-setting the globe on a weekly basis, being in a new city every few days with exciting new adventures, visiting the little hidden bars, cafes and restaurants that become your favourite regular haunts when you visit different capital cities around the world and catching up with some of my closest friends who are now spread far and wide across this vast planet of ours, but that’s also a big part of what inspires and drives me.

Ever since I left, I’ve been working towards getting that lifestyle back on my terms doing something I love. I’m close now… I can feel it. 🙂


You can also listen to the Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast series here.

Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet is a weekly podcast interviewing inspiring individuals and successful entrepreneurs from around the planet across a range of industries (incl. music, film/tv, fashion, travel, comedy and more) about what makes them tick as people and drives their hunger for success.

Hot & Delicious Group.. Passion, Creativity & Community.

Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet:

Twitter @hotndelicious 
Instagram @hotndelicious

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.


X-Emirates cabin crew. Confessions. I’m no David Duchovny, but I feel like Hank Moody!

Posted on Updated on


Argggghhh… amazing end to Californiation! Well worth the wait!

As a life-long fuck-up like Hank Moody in many ways (aren’t we all? :p) and with 6.5 years spent traveling the globe staying in 5 star hotels partying like a rockstar with beautiful women, I feel a lot of parallels between David Duchovny’s Californication character and the life I used to lead in Dubai (albeit with less fucking and punching).

Galavanting the globe as an Emirates Airline flight attendant with serious disposable income was such an eye-opening experience and if I hadn’t been through the situations I have had, Hank’s life would seem surreal. To me it feels like home. As a result I became close to a TV show that mirrors of a lifestyle from my Dubai days that was so bizarre that the few people who have had the opportunity to experience it will know what I mean when I say “You can’t understand it until you’ve lived it.”

I’ve had a stunning Singaporean/Malaysian cabin crew girl I was seeing be offered US$10K to spend the night with an Arab guy that she’d never met (I wasn’t there & fortunately she refused), hotel room after-party in Colombo (Sri Lanka) with a Swedish and Turkish girl both throwing themselves at me after a night on the town drinking cheap-ass spirits and musty Sri Lankan beer in seedy  underground bars, a friend who’s spent years in Middle Eastern prison after returning from an Amsterdam boys weekend with (unknowingly) half a pill left in his back pocket, bailed another mate out of a Mexican jail for US$188 after he was arrested by the policía for urinating down a Cancún side-street, drinking 5 nights out of 7 ’til blackout for years on end and the only reason it wasn’t 7 is that occasionally I had to jump on an oversize metallic flying tube for work, ripping up Bangkok’s Radio City dance-floor with Aeroflot cabin crew on renowned Pat Pong red light strip, daring my best mate to run nude through Prague’s streets during weekday peak hour after an all night session in Czech bars, devouring Heineken cans in the back of taxis in the sandpit not caring that I was living in a Muslim country (so disrespectful), landing into Brisbane at 6am followed by a 21 hour drinking session then flying on to Auckland 3 hours later, Emirates Airline rugby tours in Paris, Phuket x 2, Cardiff, Johannesburg..  and that’s just a drop in the ocean of memories… I’m not boasting & I’m certainly not proud of some of my exploits..


For all these experiences, from childhood to now on my self-imposed tumultuous journey from self-loathing to self-love, I have traveled the planet, lived in the Middle East, Italy, Indonesia and all over Australia, had more women than most (although not nearly as many as some that’s for sure! – you know who you are! :D) and made a whole lot of fuck-ups.. but some things never change. While I grew up as a kid thinking I wasn’t good enough for anyone and all I craved was a hot woman who’d love me, I now crave so much more.. a love that just makes sense without trying.. someone who will do stupid things just to make me laugh (as I do with my friends) and accepts me as I am but teaches me so much by just being who she is.. AND of course I wouldn’t be overly upset if she’s a little bit hot, intelligent, loves to travel, sexual, spontaneous, independent, ambitious, craves delicious food & works out regularly like me (mixed in with a few cheeky bevies of course)… but again.. one common thread has stayed true.. essentially for all my faults I’m a good person and I crave someone special..

So while I’m happy and living life in the now, I’m always striving for more – to be a better person, better at what I do and constantly learning; I’m far from perfect and the hopeless romantic in me felt sated tonight to see the good-guy who’s a fuck-up chase the lady he loves, bare his soul and have it all work out.. the happily ever after flying off into the sunset.. at this moment.. at least for now 😉 It might all be fiction, but this just makes me happy…

Vale Hank Moody.

P.s. Most of the ladies featured in these images are rather good friends of mine and their presence in this gallery in no way suggests I’ve had the pleasure of their intimate company.. I wish! 😀

Hot & Delicious Group.. Passion, Creativity & Community

Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet:

Twitter @hotndelicious 
Instagram @hotndelicious

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.
Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.