American Pie: Slice 1- Getting there
PIC: First impression, Washington DC.
I know it is a bad way to begin this, but internet is not the cheapest thing in the United States of America. Over the course of time, I will find many other things not so well with the "world superpower" or its inhabitants and many things that are appreciable, but let's take that as they come...
Land beneath the clouds
After over nine and a half hours in a very cramped economy section of the Lufthansa plane from Chennai to Frankfurt, I could have jumped for joy as the pilot said we were going to be landing in Frankfurt. WEll, i would have, if I could have... Stiff as I was, that action of joy would have to be postponed.
Soft, fluffy clouds covered the entire city and its famous, humungous airport, making you want to drop gently down and lay your head on them. Which would, of course, be a very silly idea if you are on a plane several thousands of feet above them. But the landing was one of the smoothest I've ever seen and the Germans as functional a race as I've ever seen. I mean functional as in efficient, brisk, even brusque, perfunctory smiles, measured words.
And there, I had my first taste of airport security: that meant taking off my shoes, belts etc and coming out of a line to be scanned specially! :) Mind you, I dint even get none of theat in America, but I could have been lucky. Plain lucky.
The phenomenon of the visiting Indian Parent
I need to put a chapter on this and maybe I will, when I have more time and don't have to pay for the internet.
Anyone travelling from India towards the WEst is going to encounter a special group of people, burgeoning in numbers, travelling along with them, speaking different languages, visiting sons, daughters, neices and newphews in America and England. I say this, because you cannot miss them, on flights, in airports... elderly gentlemen travelling with ladies, apparently their wives, wrapped up against the anticipated, but non-existent cold of late summer, crowding around in clusters, finding support in each other, proudly discussing their children''sachievements. "My daughter topped at IIT and now she is a topper at MIT." "My son has a car and lives in a house facing the Hudson." or simply like the Reddy's who sat next to me, " All my children are in the US, Lousiana, New York, Delaware..." Some of them like Mrs. Reddy are such intrepid travellors, that they will guide you from terminal to imposing terminal in Frankfurt airport and through the procedures with elan, it amuses you, after you've stopped being amazed.
Which is why it is so important for me to chronicle the peregrinations of the Indian Visiting Parent.
But that is all for the moment and next time, it will be Sunny Side UP!