I get a call from a friend of mine, who tells me that there are no tickets left to go home for Diwali. I quickly browse the net to find air tickets. The only direct flight was that of Air India. I think "WOW! International flight! Service must be world class! I will also get to see all those international chicks that usually go on all these flights! Can't wait!".
Oh Boy! Was it to be a completely different experience.....
The flight was scheduled for one in the morning, as is the norm with all Air India flights, whether it be going from Mumbai to Kochi or to any other destination. The TV screen said that we would be boarding the flight from Gate No. 6A. So, like what any other normal traveler would do, I went and sat right next to the said gate, and waited. And waited, and waited and...... It was almost 12.50, when suddenly a guy comes from nowhere and shouts "AIR INDIA FLIGHT TO KOCHI!!! PLEASE FOLLOW ME", and just runs away, leaving us to find out where exactly he went from the body odour he left behind.
We eventually realized that we had to board the flight from another gate! It took another good ten minutes to finally catch up with the guy (BOY!! What odour he had!). The only way the flight could have been considered OK now was if a super good looking woman sat right next to me in the flight.
And guess what happened.
I was sincerely hoping this would not happen again. It did not. This time, I composed myself to start another random conversation, only to find that the woman was fast asleep! Another opportunity lost!! WHY SHOULD THESE AIR INDIA FLIGHTS FLY SO LATE IN THE NIGHT!!
It was a whole different point that I myself was feeling very sleepy. All the adrenalin, testosterone and what not, that I had mustered from having to start a completely random conversation with the woman sitting right next to me withered away, and I suddenly felt extremely tired. My eyes just screamed to close and my brain pleaded with me to reach dreamland.
As I was about to embark on my now customary "Sleep that I should have whenever I get into any vehicle/train/flight" (Although, in this case, it was actually bed time! So even a normal person would fall asleep!), I get shouted at by the air hostess. She kept on shouting "FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS! FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS! FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS!", without even bothering to note that it was late night and that everyone wanted to just SLEEP!
Well, atleast if the air hostess was good looking, I would have said "Women air hostesses! They have only looks!" and would have just laughed the whole incident off. But, alas! That was not the case with the hostesses in this flight. The less I say about them, the better it is for.. well... them.
After the seatbelt fiasco, there was a bit of a lull. Again, it being the middle of the night, I was feeling very sleepy. I was about to fall asleep when again came the barrage! "PLEASE OPEN YOUR TRAY! PLEASE OPEN YOUR TRAY!" they said, this time around. And dumped some food on the tray, and left off to wake up the next person from his/her wonderful dream.
The food, I have to say, was actually good. I gobbled it up in a matter of seconds. The woman sitting beside me was still sleeping. She had not fallen for all the tricks that the hostess used to keep us awake in the flight. "WHY ME?! WAKE UP WOMAN!" was what came to my mind at that time.
Next up, they come to serve us tea and coffee. AT 2.30 IN THE MORNING! I was reminded of my time in college, frantically trying to stay awake to read up something to write for the exam the next day. Tea played a very important role those days. If not for tea/coffee/caffine, I would not have passed Engineering/MBA!
But then, this was not one of those days. In fact, it was just the opposite. I so wanted to sleep! But no, these hostesses would not go away unless we had our cup of coffee. And thus, I ended up staying awake for the whole flight journey. And the woman next to me slept like a baby.
Thankfully, I had not put any checkin luggage. But, at that time, I had this gut feeling that it would, in the end, come back to haunt me. And it sure did. All that for a later time, though.....