Sunday, July 02, 2006

Learning to Fly

It’s the new age ad for a family airliner-deccan airline.
It said --Rs.500 seats for sale from 0630 Hrs (as if someone was chucking out his morning chores and start for the airport!--but I was wrong.)

So at the breakfast table I decided to have a slice of the pie too.
Have always heard and read about budget/low cost airlines...never could board one of those.

I made a passive resolution to go to the airport...which was enroute to my college.
I was to go to my college anyway to see "some one"...so it was just an added incentive.

Had no hurry, dressed up properly for the rendezvous and headed straight to palm airport.
As soon as I was parking my bike (...okay okay...my Brothers bike!)...I was able to hear
Noises similar to Azadpur mandi in New Delhi said to myself-must be some political rally.

As the view of palam departure terminal became more obvious, I was puzzled to see swarm of
people at the deccan airline counter. all my fears and skepticism was laid to rest.

I held my sling bag tight, took one last breath and joined the crowd.

"arrey bhai ek ko ek hi ticket mile gi"...said one elderly man in the queue.
This is the rule generally at the movie halls-that too when a block buster movie is being
screened to avoid ticket hoarding.
But to see it here made the deccan airlines smile and people a bit awry.

Behind the counter, the polite well dressed lady ,all sexed up to promise you a "fulfilling"
flight said to one eager chap--"sorry, the ticket to Bangalore is for 2120".

At this price-10 yrs back u could not even kiss the airbuses ass...
And now these value tickets r being considered as not the right option even at this price!
Cause everyone of us came for the 500 rupee ticket. hence the announcement was prefixed
suitably by a sorry!

Then tat came the guys reply--"mam, u have any tickets for 500!destination not a concern!"

It definately made everyone in the queue smile cause in India, flying is still a luxury.
That shouts the intention of the people loud and clear-We want to Fly! To any where as long as its so Cheap!

This is a great thing indeed.
The Deccan people have made the common man able to dream to fly...
To take wings in a way! Its a beautifull sight to see common people..without branded clothes
(as the silly delhites' do) and "Swooshed" shoes and typical VIP suitcases rather than Columbia BackPacks
..walk the airconditioned vestibule.One of the most delightfull sites for an Indian!

So there he was-a ticket for 500+221(the Govt. share...why are they so blunt to ask for it...damn beggars they are!)=721 in all.
he shall fly from Delhi to Gangtok-a remote city in a terrorised state in North East of India. A damn 2 and a half days travel by even the fastest trains!

I was happier to see his face glow up when he was handed the tickets and a polite canary voice said "Thank You Sir".
Had it been the more frequented railway booking centres-the gesture would have been simple..
"pehle 21 rupya khulla lao,fir ticket le jao".

Here it is -India Shrinked and Redefined.
Guess things are changing.
Changing for good and pretty fast.

P.S.:I too got my tickets-from Delhi to Chennai and back at a throw away price of 4K !

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