Brownian thought space

Cognitive science, mostly, but more a sometimes structured random walk about things.

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Location: Rochester, United States

Chronically curious モ..

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Delhi to Bombay

JFK-Delhi is not too bad considering you get to stop in London and stretch your legs and patiences by going round Heathrow once, through security, and straight back into the plane. The queue here is longer, grumpier, and more rowdy. Owing in part due to the different security rules that are prompting some to argue, some to stare in disbelief and some to throw away t-shirts so they can 'consolidate' all their hand baggage into exactly One. Back on the flight, dinner is served. Now, everyone who knows me knows I'm a rather slow eater. And what with watching classic Bollywood, I'm exceptionally slow. But the airhostess is really nice about this. She tells me,"Oh don't worry, take your time. We aren't going anywhere". I pause in mid-fork and look out of the window, scrolling back to the captain's numbers- so what are we doing at 980 kmph? I go back to my Bollywood film. Delhi airport. I know enough about India to put aside my socialized European male tendencies (which I don't really have, as it turns out) and ask the first official looking man about my connecting flight to Delhi. There's something funny going on. Some guy (Official 1) is taking aside the people bound for Bombay and there's some talk about the triple-1-2. We are to be transferred via the triple-1-2. I don't have a boarding pass, and neither do a few more of the passengers, and all of us are to be subject to this mysterious triple-1-2. Now, some of us have our bags checked all the way through to Bombay and some don't. Triple-1-2 does not like this fact; but Official 2 winks mysteriously and nods sagely and tells me not to worry. Officials 3 and 4 come around, and there's and triple-1-2 is mixed up with some more codes. A typical conversation goes something like this:
O1: "But their PNC3s don't match the ones on the computer" O2: "That's easy. Transfer their PNC3s to the OLC. Pull up the triple-1-2 sheet and set the bytes to zeros and convert the RST code to their first name" O1: "Oh right" [pause] "So why don't you do it?"
And you thought getting off one flight and onto another was easy. Finally, we are down to 14 of us passengers for this mysterious triple-1-2 business, all marked in pencil onto a dot-matrix, accordion-style folding sheet, and taken through a special security gate. The security guard is suspicious, until Official 1 shows assures him that there will be only 12-14 people coming through this special gate. "Twelve or fourteen?" asks the suspicious guard, forcing Official 1 to recount. Suspicious guard counts us carefully through into a hall, where we follow Official 1 to what I understand in retrospect to have been the transfer desk. There are about a hundred people milling around the transfer desk. Most are there because they were tired of hanging around the security lines and the various shops, and the transfer desk is, after all, right next to the tea stall. Official 2 throws away the dot-matrix list, and looks us over brightly. Life starts now. So one by one we give him our tickets and are issued boarding passes. By now we are a group of 4-5 people inside the group of a 100-odd people at the transfer desk, who are realizing that all of us are part of the triple-1-2 scheme. Which turns out to be a flight leaving for Bombay not at 6.15am, as we had booked, but at 00:45 am. Now, in fact. Triple-1-2. Turns out that one of the jumbos had to be sent to Bombay for inspection; and the kindly officials decided that it would be a good idea to pack us poor travelers off to Bombay asap instead of having us sit around all night in the airport! Isn't that touching? Can this happen anywhere else? Of course I'm not sure I was 100% happy traveling on a humongous plane that some feel requires inspection, but still, that was far better than hanging around at the Delhi airport all night.


Blogger sachin kashyap said...

Cheap flights to BOM and first-rate tours package are provide by many travel companies. Lots of packages offers hotel and flights bookings.

August 16, 2013 11:32 AM  

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