Monday, 19 November 2012

The Chattering of a (Temporary!) Airport Fairy

I'm back after that long (for me!) hiatus.I did write a lot these days but then all were the same old melancholy things which just didn't seem right...So!
Daddy took me on an official agent-receiving trip to the airport yesterday. Corporate Business and I wore my most professional-looking normal-outfit (nothing inner and sleeveless sweater for the fashionistas) and waited. And waited. And observed.

Since most international planes arrive at night, the journey to the airport is usually fun!
Orange street-lights shine bright, road reflectors look sleek, hoardings seem twice as natural, Mumbai seems more urban than ever, crowded and if you sit next to the driver, it's real life NFS, only scarier since the possibility of death is very zap zoom!
Driving at night is really awfully stressing...road rage is common, and gaalis abound... I've learnt a lot many cuss words through these enlightening journeys!

Going to the airport was a festival some years before...I remember wearing my best dress, trying to smooth out all the wrinkles and, not to be beaten at poshness, wearing my free Bournvita-sunglasses, putting on posh airs and my best angrezi accent...never mind that I was thin, chicken –muscled and probably worm-ridden at the time.
Also, the costly food and water...grabbing the chance to eat out at the posh airport hotel when an NRI aunt came, keeping all the tiny bottles and paper bags as souvenirs and showing them off at school!
Ogling at the pretty airhostesses...Jet Airways with the super elegant look,and Singapore airlines for the prettiest uniform...almost worth going to Singaapur (I really believed this was a place in India before!) to stare at the PYTs I think.

I saw Om Puri this time around (I've seen Ila Arun and Macmohan before!). Why is it that only old and retired actors (no offence to them of course) are seen at airports? Where do all the hot young things disappear??(Muscled hunks and PYTs, I'm looking at you!)

The airport is one of the best places to just sit and stare...there’s so much happening!
I feel like Professor X connected to Cerebro (non-geeks who don’t allows Professor X to search for mutants for a large distance. Don’t know who Prof. X is?? Go watch X-Men. You need it.)
All the stories enfolding around you, there was this Punjabi ammi next to me in the waiting line(more like zoo-queue. I’ll tell you why) who kept yelling into her phone for her Amrika-returned puttarin whose India-number wasn't working but her Amrika-number was...30-minute baggage delay. Uff ye planes!
Poor thing was so excited she did not realize she had sat on chewing gum. Yech!
Moreover, she was wearing a bright pink jacket (arre you know the ones recently in-style here)and spent some time pulling it off with the khandan helping of course and yours truly staring!

The people coming out of the gates are fun to see too! Expectation writ large on their faces. They all first have this stoic expression on their faces when they come out (jet-lag? snobbishness? whatever) which turns to this grin if they spot their receivers and chagrin if they don’t. You can actually see their features twisting!
 And all the receivers standing there watching them like zoo animals coming on display... must be scary to see all those faces staring at you. And every time someone walks out the gate all the heads go up, which are otherwise busy, bent over digital darlings!
I feel pity for the foreign nationals who come for the first time and don’t know where to’s a comically pitiful thing!

Remember this??

And I think I saw some Varun-something actor... some girl next to me kept squealing .
The melding of nationalities (these phrases just pop into my head suddenly, is it irritating?).
The India returnees with the huge electronics. Panasonic most popular return company.
The western backpackers with the cool sneakers and accents…all fun.

If I have to be a fairy, I choose to be an airport fairy!
It’s like a world on its own...the airport.
There are bookies (namely the taxiwalas, and porters and officials. And most everybody has a suit on or at least a blazer (I just lurve the blazer turtleneck combo...some random hunk had it on there!))
Wearing psychedelic colours on yourself and your luggage helps a’s easier to find you and your bags (and is a kind of safeguard against them being stolen). Though some of the fluorescent yellow and pink eyesores were a little too much.

Best by me survey:
Outfit: Black pants. Preferably something stretchy but looking sturdy.
Any pretty top. Something long-sleeved.
Sneakers and socks...the F1 racing-shoes look so pretty.
Guys wear a blazer if its official or maybe something layered.
Talking about outfits...I wish I could tell the women (it’s mostly westerners…not being racist or any –ist mind.) who arrive without wearing a bra...shocking. Maybe I'm wrong... But I remember seeing this woman in a pink top and nothing underneath when I was smaller and the picture has stayed. Everyone... at least the men kept ogling. And the twin things kept bouncing with the tip-of-iceberg showing. It was horrifying.
I spotted another yesterday. But maybe she had worn something... because she was a little too bouncy, no other problem. Don’t think me perverted, I'm a girl myself for crying aloud... but some amount of decency is expected... just saying.
Khana: Nothing. Eat beforehand. Unless your office is paying. Note: Water is 40 bucks a litre.
Attitude: be good. Elegant. Nose-in-the-air is not nice practically contrary to whatever I said. Also, be considerate about other spitting, yelling, and general junglee behaviour.
Go stand in the front if you want your guests to see you. Use the usual train-me-jagah-pakdo technique (I.e. stand (and stare!?) behind the seat you want until it’s vacated.)

We met the foreign agent after a lot of waiting. Swiss. Talked and all in my best English accent. It’s funny understanding accents and thrilling using an accent yourself! I probably passive-smoked more than I have done in my entire lifetime in those 15 minutes of waiting for the car. Gawsh, the tortures my dad has to go through.
But I did learn a bit about Zurich (all snow and ski. And -1 degree temperature) and also got into the Leela to drop them (Obsequious gate-men. Rajasthan-outfitted bellhop...could have gone for dinner but realized that later)
The food was fun too. Though I have Bal Thackeray to blame for the stupid bandh, which meant no good places to eat and we had to eat at a dhabba sort of hotel...all the truckwalas stare, but the food is good. Hot and yummy...I enjoyed being Miss Priss and saying thank you and please to the bemused waiter-boys. Also I salute them for staying open when all the other cowards stayed closed...really, why would a dead old man ever want wretched travellers to go hungry...we almost dropped by the time we found the hotel.

Top this off with a Cornetto ice cream and Never Alone to sing along…awesome!


  1. u r a great observer.. I bet all of us can relate to this post in one way or the other.. n yep the firangs do need to put on a bra.. i hope they learn this soon.. it is common sense after all.. nice post!

  2. You see all types of species down there, I'm referring to Homo Sapiens if in doubt :D
    And there is a lot of bing-bang-boo. Putting on a show, tops the list! B-less ladies, eww, where they from; Stoopid-sounding accents, give me a break; grinning and pretending-modesty, snob-alert. But cutting the crap, it's fun to be at the Airport like you mentioned :) It's loaded, literally!

    Cheers \m/

    P.S: I've heard your name for the first time, enlighten me with the meaning PYT ;)

    1. I'm glad both of you agree with the b-less thing...I was worried it might ruffle some feathers!
      As for the name, it means maiden in Aramaic or Hebrew!

    2. Psst...Thanks for the comment.It means a lot.


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