Recently was out travelling on official business – Just like some people have Impossible removed from their dictionaries, I have or rather been forced to remove the word Vacations from my dictionary!
It was quite a few years since I flew out and in the last few years – could see a change as huge as the gap between the income and expenses of a middle class family. The airport now resembles a railway station or bus stand – it has got the clutter of people, thier attitude and expressions – painted and printed.
People had sat around after security check and waiting to board the plane. A thick voice came with a bell sound and announced ‘ we regret to announce that flight IT 411 is delayed by‘ and in that instant a few people ran to the boarding counter with passes thrust out without even hearing or understanding what was being announced.
The flight agent had to repeatedly tell people and regret the delay by 10 minutes.
This repeated one more time, much to the amusement of a few people. These gents and ladies looked educated to understand english atleast. I could only blame the old phillips speakers which changed the tone and tenor of a Lata to high pitch sqwacking of unoiled hinges of doors.
Finally the call came and people queued up – a pleasent sight it was. Myself waited so that everybody would board and I can do the same later at my comfort. I can understand if the seats are unreserved or space would not be available for stowing away hand baggage, there is a need to hurry and try to get the best seat. But here, due to rules only one hand baggage was allowed and still our people out of shear practice hurried to board the plane.
I missed the good days when Ladies with children, Aged people, Families and singles were asked to board in that order!
It was a pain for me to see and hear what the flight agent was doing. He did it some 47 times before I lost count. He wished a very happy flight after checking the boarding pass for every customer. Poor chap – he looked very young. We say our jobs are boring and repetative. Imagine him saying this atleast 368 times and 3 times a day. Thats not for me! It was noticable a few passengers atleast mumbled something like a thank you.
On entry to the aircraft we got plastic smiles and welcome aboard statement. Here again was a sign language statement with no feelings behind. It was just a thankless job for those hostess – literally.
I had concluded that the cost of cloth at bangalore itself was quite high and was confirmed it was expensive and beyond reach of every hostess based on the lesser amount worn by them. Times are changing mohan, life is getting expensive!
Most airport turmacs resemble the busy ring roads of a urban city. The flights are queued up for takeoff or landing akin to bumper to bumper traffic. It was a pathetic sight for the captian to wait 30 minutes after taxying. Thank god atleast the touch down did not have ariel tours of the city.
Printed tickets have been replaced by e-tickets. I dont have the colourfull ticket booklet which i would read like a novel end to end just for the fun and heck of it. The most important part was the warsaw pact – what ever it meant.
Atleast the flights have banned smoking and serving liquour on domestic sectors. Thank god for small mercies. Security was still a misnomer. I travelled on the name of Mohan Kumar!!