This is one flight I will remember for a long time. The post is a bit long hope you will read it till end.
I have always believed travelling is not about reaching the destination, but the Journey is the Destination. I am not sure who first came up with this quote, but I am neither ashamed to copy this nor I am scared as I am pretty sure it is not copywrited. So recently while returning from Tal Chappar in Rajasthan I took a flight from Delhi to Hyderabad and for a change I decided to keep my eyes open and observe the travelers around me.
I met enough interesting characters in this small 2 hours flight, though the observation started during the check in process itself.
- Kaalia: The first gentleman if he can be called a gentle man I encountered had hallucinations about being Kaalia. No he was not dark at least not above neck as the liberal application of Fair and Stupid seems to be working on his barely visible skin under 3 days old stubble. Oh he did not tell me that his name is Kaalia it was purely my observation and also I strongly believe the guy could see through objects and humans. Why I say that is because he just brushed past me, and 3 other fellow travelers, 2 trolleys and reached the counter to present his ticket. Only then I realized he is Kaalia, as “ Line wahin se shoroo hotee hai jahan Kaalia Khada hota hai” I am pretty sure Big B is big enough to forgive me for bringing this up.
- Mr. Bhullakkar: I am not sure if he was sorely missing his girlfriend or the deadline he was about to miss, he tried to make sure that some of us miss our flight. Right at the check in counter he took about 3 minutes to find his ticket then, he had only photocopy of his ID and the PYT (Pretty young tyrant) at the counter was insisting on the original, so he called his mom (not making this up) to find where she has kept his driving licence as it was not in wallet. Mommy dear explained and lo it was found in the front pocket of the laptop bag. Big sigh of relief came to all of us and the line started to crawl further.
- Mr. You Know Mera Baap Kaun Hai?: Well he did not say it, but I am sure he wanted to ask this question to the security, thinking that the guy at airport security has some connection with lost and found department and will help him find his long-lost baap in the kumbh kaa mela. Don’t believe me? Ok why would he then refuse to keep his cell phone in tray? Argue that there is nothing in his jacket? Or what is the point of checking him when all the terrorists are roaming free? I hope now you believe me.
- Rahu and Ketu: I am not sure they were cousins coming to attend a marriage or colleagues coming to attend a conference in Hyderabad, but they reached the airport at different time and were allotted seats away from each other. Well the moment they entered the plane they were scouting for single travelers like me to exchange the seat. They started discussion with me blocking every body’s path trying to convince me why they can not sit away from each other for the 2 hour flight. I wonder what their wives views would be on hearing that hubby dear is inseparable from his cousin/colleague even for two hours. Under normal circumstances I would have obliged, but I had paid extra for the notional extra leg space for this aisle seat. So I bluntly refused only to hear murmurs from behind “ Yeh Madrasi type hotey hee aise hain, apna dilli wala hota to fut se maan jaata” Well dear sir I am a born Delhite, and this flight is to Hyderabad, and Madras was renamed Chennai long ago, and don’t say this to a real Madrasi as it is racist to make comments like that. (Not sure what the word coined for Chennai residents is somebody please help here).
- Slave of the Droid Monster: Well this guy must have been the corporate type, he did not have the ubiquitous and endangered (simultaneously !)symbol of the corporate types – the Black Berry, since Black Berry boys are busy singing and dancing on TV rather than selling phones this guy had an android in his hand and every single moment he was busy answering emails, continuously ignoring the air hostesses request to switch off the cell phone Till she almost snatched it from him. I had a feeling this was his way of getting some attention from the air hostess.
- Reporter: I am not sure which newspaper or TV channel he worked for but he was continuously giving inputs back to the headquarters so that nothing is missed from the headlines even for a second. Here is a sample:
“Yes, check in ho gaya hai, going to security, will call after security, buggers don’t allow cell phones during security”
“Yes yes, security ho gayee… saley hamaree checking ladies nahin karteee…. hee heee” ( the other side must have cracked some dirty joke.)
“ Yaar bus main ab AC bhee nahi hai,,, upar say bharee hui hai…. every tom, dick and harry now a days travel by plane” comment by DT: I am pretty sure he was not one of the famous three.
“ Yes, I am in plane now, it will take off in about 15 minute, oh haan yaarr., AH sohnee hai… par woh KF waalee baat nahin hai.., ( no prizes for guessing what the code words AH and KF stands for)
“ Ok, I need to hang…sohnee ghoor rahee hai….oh abhee ek bande ka cell phone cheeney walee theee…., hamara bhee cheen le humne kya paap kiya hai…? Chal bye… land hotey he call karta hoon”
“ Hellooo, yes, just landed… nahin theek thee flight, khana bada bekar tha, saley panee kay bhee paise letey hain…” No yaar I told her kee is bag ko under le jane do, but I had to check in, now I will waste half hour to collect the bag…… Yes yes, Krissh, is coming to pick me up, oye Hritik nahi, but us se kum bhee nahi, oye apne College time ka buddy hai, ab to US- WOOESS jaata rehta hai….luckily iss week Hyderabad main hai..”
7.Life is about Sharing type: I am not sure if I was the only one or he has shown his financial prudence to other people waiting for the luggage to arrive too. Without any hesitation he wanted to know where I am going, if somebody coming to pick me? On learning that I am alone and I will be taking a prepaid he immediately offered to share the cab and split the fare equally, I even had the option to be dropped first. Well thank you sir, I am not in the Forbes list of richest 5 million or even 50 million people in the world, but I still don’t share cabs in the middle of night with strangers.
8. Blogging type: Well I did not notice this guy but when I narrated about the above 7 to the Missus she reminded me that there was a blogging, nosey type of guy in the plane who instead of minding his own business was eavesdropping what others are doing or talking. In her opining this guys is the worst type of fellow traveler she would avoid at all cost. I wonder who this guy must have been? Need to find out how she spied about who all were traveling in the plane with me.
This post also appears in Hindi.
What do you have to say? Will love to hear from you.