Hi all!! Yes, I haven't blogged since a week, I know. No excuses. So, let me go back to Thurs evening, and the Dxb-Abad flight.
I really thought my hearing was impaired. One hour went by since I was at the airport and no funny talks/ events/happening? Ah, but then...it started. First: The Boarding Lounge/Zone. Couple sitting in seats behind mine. And, the talk started 'Khaava maan shoon chhe'(What did you carry, for food?)- and, quick as a rabbit, the guy's wife brought out paper plates, theplas, achaar, etc and they began munching away.
Boarded the plane(this time, they didn't offer a reduced rate upgrade, so I was in Economy and that was good. Why? Read on!!)..I occupied my window seat, and was observing the stream of people (It was a full flight, even though it was a Jumbo aircraft)rushing down the aisle, worried that the overhead lockers would not have space for their bag+the 4/5 extra bags they were carrying from the Duty Free. Two rows ahead, the air hostess had moved into the seat area, to avoid inconveniencing the 'well-built' people who couldn't squeeze past the aisle on their own, let alone pass by with her standing there to assist people. And, this humorous guy and his wife(they were 2-3 couples travelling), comes in, indicates to her that it's their seat, and says ' You sit, you sit. I'll ask my wife to go ahead and do your duties'. Right from the air hostess to the rest of us who heard, there was laughter all around. Nice start.
This guy and his friend began their tete-a-tete. Some of the comments:
' With so many passengers walking in, will this plane be able to take off?
' The middle row is for the fat people(This guy, telling his friend who was in the middle row), so that the plane maintains it's balance. We thin ones are always given the side seats.
' We should take 5 cups of this lime juice, so that we don't need to keep disturbing the air hostess.
' What's that smoke coming from the A/C? Are they trying to scare us, so that half of us run out and the plane can finally take off?'
When the flight is about to land:
'Can we ask them to drop us off directly at Ellisbridge instead of the airport? It'll save us a lot of road travel.'
When the flight landed:
The usual rush to unsnap the safety belt, even before the plane stopped. They were all worried that the flight would take off without them, or, someone would pick their luggage from the conveyor belt, I'm sure. Two people actually ran ahead, from way back, even before we had gotten up. (Sadly for them, they'd opened the rear door of the aircraft too, in five minutes)
The aged couple in front of me...now, I'm sure they had been there in one of my earlier flights. Remember I wrote about the Granny who was hale and hearty and got into a frenzy to get off with all the youngsters, and began jumping around in the aisle, waiting for hubby to pick up his walking stick and raise himself(he was arthritic) from the chair?Well, she lost patience again, jumped around again,got into a frenzy and walked ahead, leaving hubby to the care of some caring passengers who said they'd wait till his wheelchair came.(No, I wasn't one of them, since 2 people already offered to wait).
Went through customs, reached the baggage conveyor belt. At least a hundred people jostling each other. And, the rest trying to peer through. (A friend who had also come on the same flight, commented' best way to get a massage early in the morning- reminds one of Mumbai locals) Honestly, one wouldn't believe that these are mostly well-off people, (earning a lot more than the average BPL(Below Poverty Line) Indian), behaving like they're just released(before time) from Karelibaug area(There's a mental hospital there). One lady suddenly shouted from behind ' I see it, I see it. Mane java do ne bhai- maari bag joi mein(Let me pass, please. I just saw my bag)'. We made way for her(I'd reached the 'front row' finally, just then. Turns out, she was applying a bit of ingenuity- her bag didn't come for half an hour, but, the stout one had at least made her place in the front row with this shout. :)
Finally, after watching 45 minutes of rotating bags, LCD TVs, rope-tied potlas, (stuff put in a bedsheet and tied with a rope, to avoid buying a bag), false alarms(people picking up someone's bag thinking it was their own and then dumping it back with a bang), I finally collected my two bags and walked out.
And, thus endeth another memorable journey. Great fun, na?:)