Homeward bound.

March 13, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

A night in Bangkok airport passed pretty quickly. I edited loads of pictures and managed to get a couple of hours sleep.  On check-in the Jet airways staff were pretty efficient. Mind you, they needed to be. There were 10 Indian blokes in the queue who were laden down with goodies in a plethora of bags they were sharing between them or farming out to fellow countryman with allowance to spare. Each of the guys had a 40 inch Sony flat screen TV so some Thai shopkeeper had obviously had a very profitable day. It turned out that they’d bought them for 50,000 rupees apiece, the same TV in India would cost 95,000 rupees.

The flight itself was full but I swapped a mid row seat with an American couple who wanted to sit together and the time, well, it flew by...! Sadly the food was a bit of a disappointment. I tried the Indian veggie option. Now, to make Indian food tasteless really takes some doing but they achieved it. I had a bland version of Idli and dhal, plus something I’ve never had the misfortune to come across before – an Indian fusion mini pizza which was equally forgettable. We were treated to some lifeless and anaemic coffee to wash it down.  I shouldn’t complain too much – at least we got here. I have a link to the Times of India newspaper on my Facebook page and one story caught my eye: Jet Airlines were given an ultimatum by the Government to pay off back taxes by today or its bank accounts would be frozen.  I had nightmare visions of turning up In Delhi only to be marooned as guys brandishing court orders and wheel-clamps went to work on my aircraft...

Getting off the plane in Delhi immediately brings back memories. I don’t know what it is but India has a distinctive smell unlike anywhere else in the world. You know you’re here just by breathing in. Mind you, years ago that would have been the toilets (which really could make your eyes water!) but nowadays Indira Ghandi International Airport is a massive modern airport – albeit with the crumbling edge of quality and attention to detail that’s India’s other distinctive trademark. The lounge I‘m sitting in is liberally supplied with power points for laptops. The problem is – finding any that work!

What stands out to my eyes is that this is just like any other international airport now. You can buy all the usual duty-free trinkets and baubles. None of this was possible when I first came to India. Then, the order of the day was ‘Swadeshi’ - self-sufficiency that decreed everything had to be produced in country. So, you had ‘IMFL’ (Indian Made Foreign Liquor). ‘Old Monk’ rum and ‘Bagpiper’ whisky were two I remember. The closest the Scotch had got to Scotland was Bombay...

(Pt 2 to follow shortly)


Comments

No comments posted.
Loading...

Archive
January February (8) March (15) April (4) May (4) June (1) July August September (1) October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December