Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Journey (SMF -> SEA -> DXB -> BLR)

My 1st trip to India.  The team has shared their various experiences of Bangalore with me, but until seeing some things with my own eyes it’s difficult to imagine.  I figure if I don’t have outrageous expectations & build in some flexibility for the unexpected it will be a successful trip.

I made it to SMF with plenty of time for check-in & security procedures.  Had a little complication at the Alaska counter.  The attendant was planning to have my bag sent to Dubai as the final destination, not good.  She cancelled the transaction & started searching for the 3 digit Bangalore airport code.  Not really providing me the comfort that my bag was going to make it to India I argued to just have my bag sent to Seattle & I would re-check in with Emirates.

The flight to Seattle was quick & pleasant.  I grabbed my bags & eagerly headed to the Emirates counter.  My seat had not yet been assigned as online edits were closed.  The counter was scheduled to open at 1:30, it was 1:20 & I was 3rd in line.  40 minutes later, the counter finally opened at 2:00.  I found that I was auto assigned a dreaded middle seat.  I asked for a reassignment but it was a full flight.  I was ready to take the exit row at this point, luckily another attendant was able to assist & get me an aisle seat. Yeah!

I settled into my teeny tiny seat preparing for the long 14+ hour journey.  The lady in front of me wasted no time in reclining her chair all the way back.  Hello?!?  I browsed the movie listing & was pleasantly surprised at the wide selection.  I watched 4 movies: Batman the Dark Knight Rises (excellent), Rock of Ages (funny), Little Bit of Heaven (sniff - tissue please) & 1000 Words (meh, ok).  The airplane food was decent, better than expected, at least I did not have to starve or eat granola bars & peanuts the whole way.  I noticed that the lady Emirates attendants were matching all the way down to the smallest details.  The each wore the same shade of red lipstick, and either clear or red nail polish.  The most interesting incident was when I asked for some headache medicine.  She brought me a couple of white pills & asked what these were.  She tells me “Panadol”.  Never heard of it, so I asked her to repeat.  This time I get “Paracetamol”.  I have a major headache & no internet connection to figure out what kind of drug I’m about to take.  So, I resort to talking to my flight mate, apparently Panadol is just like Tylenol.  Good to know for future reference.

Finally it was time to get off the plane in Dubai.  The airport was super clean & surprisingly quiet for 6pm.  I had a few hours so I walked thru the Duty Free shops looking for treasures.  I found some much loved Kinder candy even the Kinder Egg which is banned in the US because of choking hazards.  The kinder egg is chocolate on the outside with a creamy milk center and a mini toy surprise buried within the center.  I wonder what would happen at customs if I tried to bring the Kinder Eggs home, probably not a good idea.

The last flight to Bangalore seemed infinitely long.  I was so tired of sitting; an ice pack for my back would have been a nice treat.  Finally I arrived in Bangalore!!

1 comment:

  1. Good to know you made it safe. Hope you headache is gone.
    You should start taking picture and post it here.
    About that candy you should buy some for all of us. Just bing it with you, worst case they will take it away. :)