As the title implies, I’m a time traveller, you see. 😀
I know it took a week, but finally, here are the chronicles of my flights to India. I’ll catch you up on DN, my apartment, Navratri and learning “housewife things” later. I DID NOT miss Indian internet, which has been very unkind to me. >:(
Until then, read the story below (forgive the raw nature of this text), and keep up with me otherwise on facebook.
When I arrived at the MCI airport, the expenses for the luggage added up to $500 USD. The lady helping us, suggested I put my purse in the smallest suitcase, which was meant to be a carry-on, and indeed use it as a carry on. This knocked the price down to $300, which I was still very surprised my step-dad was able to help with. We had to do a bit of rearranging, with 8 minutes left, in order to optimize the space and weight. I rushed over to my gate area and waited in line. At that moment, my step-dad called his business partner, Sandeep, to let me talk to him. The whole conversation, he was very surprised that I was already going back. I was happy to hear from him after so long.
I got into the gate and they stayed behind, as per protocol. I went through the security check, completely forgetting to take off my shoes in the process, though I know the drill by heart. I felt silly and apologized to the security guards, quickly taking my shoes off and proceeded to go through the scanner to complete the checkpoint. I was surprised they let me keep my jewelry on this time. Elite Delta seemed to want me to take it all off, when I first left the country.
I waited in the waiting area. It took me a minute to find a place to sit, and the whole situation was pretty awkward. I finally found somewhere to sit, when I saw my mom waving and taking pictures through the window. Sigh… I waved back. I was not impressed by the way I looked and felt and the fact that she wanted to take pictures of it. As I sat there, a security guard came by with a table to set up shop. He was randomly checking carry-ons. Somehow I knew I would be selected for a random check by security. I waited in line, as they called for my group to have their boarding passes checked. After the woman checked mine, I started to walk past the security guard when he selected me as a lucky winner. He checked my carry on, and started conversation… but when I responded, his responses to me were empty. He didn’t care what I said, he was just filling the space with words. So I shut up and let him talk to himself.
When I got on the plane, it was a smaller two-seater, and my seat was all the way in the back on the right hand side. I struggled to make room for my backpack when the woman sitting next to me moved her laptop just so I could cram my backpack in the space above. I shoved my carry on below me, tucked my passport in the bag, took out my notebook and just relaxed by the window. I did my best not to fall asleep, and succeeded. I ordered cranberry juice and sipped slowly, gazing at the clouds from above. I made notes of my journey and towards Newark. The best part was that I got to see New York City and the Statue of Liberty. It was amazing! ♥
We had to land at gate A instead of C (which I needed to be in) so I took a shuttle over to gate C to avoid having to go through security check again. Tips and tricks, folks, tips and tricks. (I had no idea about the shuttle in Newark, when coming home from India, and missed my flight because I was delayed in security.) In the shuttle, a girl with blue eyes kept staring at me. Two aunties in sarees sat beside me, minding their own business.
I made my way to the gate area I was meant to be at.. C123, and waited for hours, standing. Who would want to sit down just to sit for 14 more hours? Nope. Not me.
As I stood, I saw these cute kids – two little boys – following their dads, and old and confused aunties and uncles. In fact, almost the entire group was Desi, except an old tourist couple, three American girls and two American boys.
I got on the plane and asked the man behind me to help me find a place to put my things. After a few moments, he politely suggested I move up a few seats and stow my backpack in the storage container above. I thanked him and followed his advice. I sat there until almost the last minute, thinking I’d be sitting alone, when another American girl came and sat by the window. (I was on the aisle seat.)
We talked a lot about India and tea. She didn’t like Indian food. She was from California. She worked at a medicinal tea shop that I’d probably never heard of before, because it’s an “east coast/west coast thing”. She was in India to volunteer, and it was for her business, but she was on a 5 year tourist visa. She couldn’t understand how I didn’t get a 10 year visa, while she had easily applied for a 5 year visa. -_-
The food was good. Only two meals this time.
I ordered coke with the first, cranberry juice with the second, and during another drink time, had hot tea. I honestly don’t know why I thought it would be green tea, because it was black and I had so much caffeine in my system that I could not sleep properly after that.
When the caffeine wore off, I made it through the flight mostly by sleeping.
For the last five hours, I refused to sleep, because I knew when I landed it would be night time, and I wanted to be able to sleep at night.
When it was time to go, I got off the plane and immediately, I could smell India. There is nothing like the smell of home. ♥