Friday, November 23, 2007

Atithi devo bhava (??????)

But I guess there are different rules in the air. People tend to lose their nationality then I guess. Why, isn’t there a certain way to treat ‘guests’?

Air India hasn’t changed in the past 10 years. This was my second trip to USA after ten years, and things have just got worse. Then, there were a few air hostesses who would care you to your seats and treat you somewhere near to being ‘guests’. But this time, they were older and more uncouthly.

First, it is at the entrance. Hands joined, though misaligned, in a somewhat Indian ‘namaskar’ pose, face, either blank or turned toward another colleague as if greeting the guests is a routine which could be fitted into the schedule with another activity to save time. Hmmm… future Napoleon Bonaparte s, saving time. (Oops, do they have a future? They are already so old! But excellent multitasking anyway!)

Then, it’s their look. Aren’t they supposed to look good? I don’t know. But I think they should. There should be some eye-tonic for the tired passengers. But even if there isn’t any, at least they should be dressed pleasantly. They wear a sari fine, but what about the make-up and the hair-style? Most of the air hostesses were wearing flashy eye-liners, in the colors of green n yellow – eeks! And the hairstyle was like a big football tied in a black net! Maybe they need extra space to lay the coffee cups. Justified.

Then you politely ask for an air perfume because the cabin is stinky. Oh! Not a problem baby. That’s because you’re seated near the restrooms. But still, you ask. And pat comes the reply – “stinky? Is it? Ok, ya. Wait let me finish the work in hand.” The work finishes when the passenger’s nose becomes immune to the smelly restrooms. After all, you HAVE TO use the restrooms after the coffee or the wine. So why not become accustomed to the smell? Hmm.

Then, you politely ask for a newspaper because you can’t get up and have it yourself as you’re stuck in the middle of the row and the passenger next to you is deep into the slumber land. “It’s over there” says the lady (with eyes wide and big as if saying, “How dare you disturb me!”)

Oops, sorry again. My mistake. I better keep quiet and watch the silly video on tv for a thousandth time. Or listen to the same 10 kishore kumar songs I have been listening to since the last ten hours. It’s just a matter of sixteen-seventeen hours after all. LA is not much far away from Mumbai.

But I must say the stewards were far better than the stewardess. They were patient enough in listening to the problems. At least there’s some hope.

I don’t know what impression the people visiting the country carry when they travel in such airlines. I want Air India to serve better just because it has the name INDIA to it.

1 comment:

mphpt07 said...

I do not think your comments will make any difference to the people concerned.

It is better to forget and forgive!