This post pertains to the end of a hard week in my life (during which blogging was a casualty) that saw me catching a flight to Goa today. Nothing much, just a couple of days of conference, after which the world will remain much the same.
I reached the airport in Kolkata, and was greeted by several girls in red.
Kingfisher promises a really different flying Indian experience. I was all set to enjoy this. Well, I was greeted by Bipasha Basu in a suit that looked as if the owner was doing aortic arterial surgery a few minutes back, and wanted the world to know it.
Celina Jaitley ushered me in. Her chest was very un-Celina-like, though. She clearly had forgotten her breasts at home. I moved on to security.
“Anything to declare, Sir? Mobile, shobile kicchhu hai?” the security guy said. His like must make a lot of terrorists very very secure. It is like, when he is checking your boarding pass, he is casting lustful glances at the Celina Jaitleys of Kingfisher.
“Any mobile-shobile, Sir? Please bagey ghusaa lijiye! Aar kono liquid-shiquid you have?”
“No, I have only a bladder full of urine. Can I carry it, or is carrying liquids beyond 100 ml not allowed?”
The humor was lost on him. Bengalis are a humorless lot, it seems.
Inside the plane
Airhostesses: are they called something more politically limp these days? Well, like Airy Juice Assistant, Elevation Provider, Air Supplier, Frown-Air, Global Warmer, Stratojanitor, etc.?
The poor ladies! I am, as of this moment, writing a letter to the United Nations Human Rights Commission to petition the world on behalf of these airhostesses and their customers. After all, eating airline food is bad enough, but is it this bad that these airhostesses look like their backs and tummies are stitched and pressed together by mistake? Can you imagine what it must be doing to the millions of rotund men and women who see them? Can you believe that these people will be able to down their stony parathas and blotting paper kheers with a calm, coordinated peristaltic movement of the gullet muscles? These people will become mental wrecks. And the food being what it is in airlines, dental wrecks, I won’t be surprised!
Are you aware of the Murphy’s Law of Airlines? One of the laws says that the most beautiful girl in the flight never sits next to you, and if you see two of the fattest guys in the flight, you know that your seat is between theirs’. Well, I upped Murphy’s Law.
Well, would you believe who was sitting next to me, right next to me, on the CCU-MUM circuit? No, not Jyoti Basu, not Bal Thackeray, nor Bappi Lahiri.
It was a full-blooded off-duty Kingfisher airhostess, resplendent in bridal red. Actually, it wasn’t really bridal, as she was uniform-clad, but might well have been, the way she was preening for me. She was around six inches taller than me, which made my neurons fire irrationally like in a Neurotransmitter World Trade Fair. And skin, what skin! Flawless surface (as revealed by the high red skirt), pink as a baby’s ass. Skin that allowed my gentle gaze and its contained optical x-rays to penetrate just enough to reveal the blue veins carrying her warm blood to her splendidly located heart. Skin with the hair follicles of a limb waxed last week. Contour was gourmet chicken. Imagine a leg of said bird, with just a little fat under the skin, and ready to eat….finger-lickin’ good!
There is something to be said for chemistry, as Barbara Cartland always used to say. Now, we can officially say the same for particle physics. The particles of the leg of my neighbor and the particles of my left hand were engaged in an insane conspiracy to meet, come Hell or high water. I had to exercise every fiber of my volitional resources, and maintain the Terms of Service of the Kingfisher Airlines. Else, as Russell Peters says, somethin’ would have happened tonight!
Another thing is that I found it difficult to breathe. No, not in a ‘took my breath away’ sort of breathless, but different. Sitting next to such a fetching specimen of adorable Body Mass Index, I had to hold the paltry few kilos of tummy (that had recently made a new entry into my persona) in control, preventing them from revolting against the tyrannical control of my trouser belt. Naturally, with a sinking level of blood oxygen, my smile became glassy and constipated. Hardly the stuff of Fatal Attraction. I can’t lose my touch, I rebuked myself. No more of those wholesome meals and desserts, I promised.
At the end of a long flight, during which I ate some South Indian veggie breakfast and fell asleep, I was woken up by a loving, gentle shake of the shoulder. Not too hard to be matronly, and yet, soft enough to be personal and loving. Ms. Murg Lababdar herself. She was making some gestures. For a moment, I thought she was inviting me to take off my belt and copiously teach her mouth-to-mouth resuscitation techniques. I realised that she was asking me to fasten my seat belt. Eyes met in a millennial instant of recognition of a common passion.
She also seemed to realise our common conundrum, and we smiled: she brilliantly, confident in our common destiny, and I, sadly. Sad that life is only the name of a King-sized game of missed fishing opportunities. I smiled back again, confident that my day would come.
From Mumbai, I had to get to Goa. The connecting flight to Goa was another red airline: Spicejet. In the flight….
Hungry, I ordered a sandwich, which the steward explained to a young boy (in his twenties) near me, was a vegetable cheese sandwich. As I was chewing my sandwich, the boy stared at me for a very long moment. I instinctively closed my mouth and choked as if I was the Queen of England caught with a large percentage of sandwich stuck exactly in the center of the cervical esophagus. Goggle Eyes looked at my sandwich, and asked “Achchi hai?”
“Is it good?” he insisted.
I nodded more vigorously.
“Is it vez?” (veg?)
Now, people will tell you I am a fair man, with no star-like tantrums and no hang-ups. However, I maintain certain principles in life. Like not talking when I am eating sandwiches. The confusion that occurs when air and food both try to pass in opposite directions in the pharyngeal passages can cause minor calamities like death, and major ones like hospitalisation and operations. Hence, I refuse to talk, but more than this, I was generating a dislike for this muscle-bound, black haired cross between Adonis and a dolt. I decided to fix him.
I gestured for him to hold on, swallowing a large bolus of sandwich with as much saliva and gravitas as I could summon.
“?” I asked.
“Is this vez sandwich?” he asked again.
“No, it is actually pot-roasted camel testicles in tortoise sauce. It is a local specialty. Want a bite?” I asked.
Somehow, the conversation never went beyond this point. Sigh. Uncivil people.
For my previous encounter with erotic females, read this post.