The annual Indian family vacation is the one thing all of us looked forward to as kids. And say, just say, if you were going by a plane, then it was no less than a festival! There will be garlands and pooja thalis involved! The fascination of travelling by flight would over shadow the entire trip! And the two hours it takes to reach Delhi from Nagpur, would be forever remembered, documented on several social websites, and bragged about for years to come!
In case you haven’t had a chance to experience a flight yet, let me take you through the 10 things which happen everytime Indians are on a plane!
- We love queues:
As much as we crib about ATM lines, Indians in the deep dark corners of their hearts love queues! Ever seen the long queue at the boarding gate? After all, the airline is not going to let you in even if you have paid for the flight if you don’t queue at the boarding gate! So shun all logic and get in with all your cabin luggage and documents and children instead of sitting in the waiting room. Pushing someone in front of you is going to ensure you a window seat!
It goes without saying that we need to line up in that narrow aisle while getting down. I mean, how else would the pilot know that “hamara stop aa gaya hai?” Not just that, if you do not de-board the plane first, there is no guarantee that you will find your luggage at the carousel or get a taxi.
2. Check in:
It’s pretty obvious that you need to check in at the airport on FB otherwise how will people in your entire friend list know that you sat in a plane headed to so and so city, information which they had absolutely no use for. #vacaymode #enjoyed is a travel etiquette. #travelgoals is a compulsion because obviously travelling from Mumbai to Pune should be on everyone’s bucket list. Duh!
What’s a hash tag without a selfie? People will literally stall queues (the one thing they love most) to take selfies getting in a plane, or in front of it.
“I’ll board the flight I pushed and shoved everyone for, but first lemme take a selfie!”
- Ogle: The white aliens with their white alien babies are spotted on airports most. How do you expect us to not stare with all our might to extra-terrestrials? Come on, free sightings! Who can say no to that!?
- Division of class:
Upper Upper class – Window Seat
Middle class – Middle seat
Lower class – Aisle seat
Needless to say, the window seat passenger is allowed to stick his/her head in the window and observe the clouds, city skylines and play zitchdog with birds.
The middle class is supposed to squirm and adjust between the two major classes and stare blankly at the seat in front of him and observe in great detail the material, fabric, make of the chair.
The lower class gets to see all the “tamasha” happening in the aisle (which is great). He also has the sole privilege of being shoved and reprimanded and told to adjust by the trolley and put in his place by the bags and elbows of the upper class. He is required to say nothing and suffer in silence. That’s what you do best anyway, you lowly pathetic aisle seat sitter!
- The safety announcement:
First of all people will be vying for the coveted emergency exit seat on the plane. No, not to ensure a quick getaway in an “apaatkaaleen” situation, but so that the air hostess personally come to them and explain the procedure. Somewhere at the back of the plane, a group of guys feel the need to snicker and giggle when the steward enacts the safety procedures. How are life threatening situations funny? But also, since when have Indians cared about life and death? Us, bad ass daredevils!
- On flight service:
Everybody knows that tailor made trolley custom designed to fit in the 450 mm aisle in a plane. No soul, nay, no shadow can pass through once the trolley is in motion. Not even if you climb and crawl in the overhead cabin. Why do you feel the sudden need to pee only as soon as the trolley starts moving and follow it step by step to the end of the plane when you could have just held your bladder a tad bit longer and then walked straight to the loo to release the brake! I understand that water is the only thing free on the plane, but, control guys! Imagine the same trolley sliding at top speed through the plane while taking off or landing. That’s the reason no airline will serve you food before being airborne. No point asking for your pre booked meal as soon as you reach your seat, now is there?
- Fighting Boredom:
The loud screams, antaksharis, hawkers, cards, khakras etc are not allowed ( read impossible) on flights. How do you fight boredom with a safety manual, a “Spice Route” magazine and a tray table? If you are young, atleast you have earphones. You could sleep or order water. Otherwise, suck it up and enjoy staring blankly at unknown faces and imagining what they had for dinner last night.
- The “main pohoch gaya”:
There is usually a lotto or early bird award to the person who unlocks the seat belt first when the wheels touch ground surface. A consolation prize is also awarded to the person who switches his phone on first. As soon as the plane lands, a pure river of culture sweeps the entire plane as people inform their loved ones in all Indian languages, “Haan, main pohoch gaya!” It’s imperative to call the people from the place you left from, as well as the people you are going to meet, and inform them of your arrival. Also if you are more than one person, you need to include everyone with you in the call. “Haan main pohoch gaya. Haan bittu bhi pohoch gaya. Sunny bhi yahi hai, mere sath. Arun, Vicky aur bunty bhi.”
- Luggage Trolley:
It doesn’t matter if you have one bag (with wheels) or 5 bags (with wheels), or one single briefcase or handbag. If you see the trolley, you take it! Come on, don’t deny it. The best ones do it too. Number 1, there is no greater fun and sophistication than being able to push that trolley. Number 2, also the only thing free!