This is a part of a mini-series of independent posts, starting here
Well well well. Now I have a tidy little reason to procrastinate on my Russian travelogue – Another trip! Best reason ever or what?
What I like a lot about traveling (except for the history and the beauty and the blah) is the feeling I get in the pit of my stomach as I prepare for the final 3 hours before take-off. It’s not like I don’t love the feeling of touching the skies again, of teleporting in space, of closing my eyes and 12 hours later, magically opening my eyes to a sight much more different. But what excites me more, for some reason, is literally the 3 hours leading up to me sitting in the aircraft, sipping my water while watching “The Wire” for the 100th time.
I like standing in the queue at check-in, gleefully pointing and laughing at the non-online-check-in line. Or chatting nonchalantly with the guard at security, as if completely oblivious to him patting me down. Or looking at the camera without being pointed towards it, in anticipation of the photoshoot at Immigration. Or just walking through to the exact location of that café I went to, that time way back when. Yes, I know, how very pretentious. But, I just like the feeling of this having become so familiar! I finally understand what old people might feel about life in general.
Anyways, this trip started off with the same excitement. As I got out of the car, I took an excitement self-portrait with my mom and dad.
As I bid them farewell, I briefly lost my composure as I hugged mom for probably the last time in 3 months. Regained it in full at the check-in counter as I saw what a baller I had become.
This is as if I had died and gone to baggage drop heaven. Missing the weight limit by the machine’s error margin. O Sweet lord of check-in counters, thou art very generous.
The fun continued as I spotted some serious arbitrage at security, moved in and brought in some efficiency in the queue. Immigration too was a breeze. Walked forward, winked at the camera (yeah, right) walked off with a grin. The most surprising part? All of this took me 15 minutes. And might I remind the unsurprised, this is Mumbai’s International Airport we are talking about. So, basically, I had entered the airport at 10:38 and was chilling in Duty Free by 10:54. For a flight leaving at 01:05… Mumbai Airport, you disappoint me. I expected less of you. Tch, Tch.
As the flight commenced take-off, I munched away on the Vadapav I had sneaked in. It was one of those pleasures that I had not had the opportunity to indulge in, in the past couple of days when I had basically gone food-hopping across the city, devouring my favourites that I was not gonna see again for the next few months. Inadvertently, I saved the best for the last.
Enough of all this typing now, “Billions” beckons.