Saturday, December 23, 2006

India - en Route --

okay, this will get posted a little later than the actual write date, but, i thought that I would share some information as i go along on my trip back to india.

Firstly, I detest flying by United makes me feel like James Bond. My flight from ORD-PHL was delayed on Dec 15 from 4 pm CST to 11 pm CST. Then the flight sat on the runway for 3 hrs and turned back to the terminal. The reason: Fog in philadelphia and that the flight crew was tired. Did anyone think about the weary passenger who had actually paid for this ordeal? Anyway, they rebooked me on the next days flight back to philly at 9.30 am. Now, note that I had a plane from JFK - Abu Dhabi to catch at 10 pm that same night. My flight from Chicago was sposed to arrive in Phila around 12.30 pm, giving me enough time to extend my apartment lease, pack, get a haircut, do some last minute shopping for mum and any final closeouts that required my attention, including paying of all out household bills (credit cards, utilities etc).

While holding my breath, i realized that the plane was (again) going to be 3 hrs late, so instead of arriving at 12.30 pm, i reached home at 3.30 pm, with very little time to get my shit together. Thank you United.

Run home with a one way rental from Avis, pick, pack and rush to the CVS pharmacy to pick up my prescription meds, go to Dons to attempt to get a haircut but alas, he has a long line and wont get to me until an hour later (which of course given my schedule means no haircut).

5.30 pm on Dec 16th: Grab my bags and rush ot the car, now im wearing jeans and a sweatshirt with sneakers. I've ditched my formal attire on the living room couch and I know wifey is gonna be mad at me for messing the house up in my hurry to leave town. That said, I do the run from Philly to JFK in record time (I'm sure the cops recorded my speed at around 95mph along the turnpike) and manage to (barely) make my flight to abu dhabi. Turns out I have middle seats for the 14 hr flight. *sigh*

I sit down to be surrounded by two individuals, one pakistani kid who grew up in nyc and the other a bangladeshi kid who grew up in Abu Dhabi. We actually made some super conversation and that really shortened the journey. The Pakistani kid and myself had a 6 hr layover in Abu Dhabi, so we managed to grab a beer together at the airport. He's a really good kid and can draw caricatures really well.I wish him luck and success in his future.

The next flight from Abu Dhabi to Bombay is uneventful, i end up in an exit row facing the flight attendants seat. She's a woman from Lebanon and we chat for a bit during those brief moments that they actually get to sit down. Turns out shes exhausted with her schedule as well and can't wait to get back to Beirut to see her mom / dad and family. I know that feeling.

7.30 AM IST: Bombay: Walk out of the Bombay airport with practically no luggage (because I only had a roll on bag and laptop bag). I have few hours to kill before heading on the Indian airlines flight at 1 pm to goa to see my wife and mom. Stop by Bandra(W) to see my best friends mom and have a quick breakfast with them. tried to call my sis-in-law for breakfast but shes not picking up her cell phone -- turns out later that she doesnt accept calls from "unknown" numbers...sheesh.

So i make it out to goa finally and mom / wife are waiting outside dabolim aiport. Wifes dad is kind enough to give me his family car to get around and that makes life so much easier getting around goa.

India, I'm back. I don't miss you very often, but when I come back I realize that you are the void that fulfils my life.

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