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The last time I had attempted the feat of taking a 3:00 AM connection from Mumbai to Bangalore, right after having flown for over 20 hours, I had vowed never to attempt it again. But I guess airline Gods were vexed with me and within two months of my initial resolution, I found myself on the same flight. Here are some of the profound conclusions I arrived at after my arrival home:

The disheveled reflection that I’ve had to reconcile with as being my own, has strengthened my long held belief that the interrogation techniques which are coming to fore (sleep deprivation, stress positions, disorientation etc.) have all been neatly packaged into trans Atlantic economy class flights for years now.

Nth corollary to Murphy’s Law: An airport’s appearance/conviviality is inversely proportional to your expectations. I had high hopes from Paris’s Charles de Gaulle airport that were emphatically put to rest by discourteous staff bordering on being rude and by designer chairs whose designer upholstery was either begrimed with designer dirt or was simply ripped off completely revealing the designer metallic frame underneath. I wouldn’t even venture near the general standards of sanitation in the rest rooms.  Of the three airports that I’ve had to transit through in Europe, only Amsterdam has been a positive experience.

And finally a little limerick on convention centers - a good part of my Atlanta trip last week was spent in one:

In convention centers its always night
Walking miles indoors takes some might
Pack a jacket before you enter
For here, its forever winter
posted: 25.7.04

4 Comments

Hey - my personal observation is that ALL airports (anywhere in the world) have their GOOD and BAD points. My 1st experience at Milan was good. Great infact - I was impressed by their organisation, hygiene, the staff et al. 3 months later, my transit through Milan couldn't have been worse. To say that it resembled an Indian railway station wouldn't be an understatement (it didn't help that I was tired, disgruntled and longing to be back "home" AND that it was peak time for flights arriving and departing and the staff was pushed to its limits with the work, and by the usual annoying customers who wouldn't comply by standard regulations...)

Anyways my point is - I think its just a matter of chance, which aspect of the airport we encounter. I'm sure there are good points to the Charles de Gaulle airport as well...(but then I'm not the one who had the awful experience)

By Blogger Geetanjali, at 25.7.04  



I love the way you've written his piece. i love the sarcasm, its impressive and a fine piece of written!
D

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 26.7.04  



Hey Geets,

Paris was exceptionally bad; while I understand that rush hours can lead to undue stress on the staff it still doesn't explain the sorry state of chairs at the terminals! Worse than anything I've seen so far even at domestic airports here in India!

I might give Charles de Gaulle another chance but Amsterdam is where I am going through if given a chance! (btw I don't judge a book by its cover so I all that I've said here applies just to the airport not to the city ;-)).

Cheers,
Deepak

By Blogger Deepak, at 27.7.04  



Thanks D! I was dripping with sarcasm, its best to let it out on the blog - doesn't cause anyone hard feelings! :-)... I feel better already!

By Blogger Deepak, at 27.7.04  


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