The trip to Delhi that wasn’t

The trip to Delhi that wasn’t

Bid farewell to my friends and family with a heartbreak and finally headed out by auto to the airport since there’s nobody to drive the car at home, the brand new Imphal International Airport. Mum and Dad left for village to meet the long lost family clan the day before and there’s no network or phone connectivity there. In fact, there’s no proper road connecting those villages. I was suppose to go with them too as per the plan but the change in their schedule cancelled all of it. I was suppose to go hunting and had bought bullets worth Rs 1000, see the abandoned village my grandparents often talked about and see how and where my parents grew up. It was an excited plan. Oh boy!

I reach the Airport and the lady at the Air India counter politely told us that it would be delayed by about 2 hours reasoning the flight got late due to fog in Delhi. I got the checking done, got the boarding pass with 27.7kg as my luggage was filled with home food materials that aren’t available in the metro cities for friends, family, near and dear ones. Nothing for me! Bamboo shoot was over 7kg and Manipuri delicacy Ngari was 5kg in total to be distributed. I have a membership that allows me extra luggage room. We waited patiently and finally boarded the flight, took our seats and as luck would have it, I was surrounded by border security forces. Mostly Meena boys from Rajasthan and my my.. I don’t mean to sound rude but their body odour is something that isn’t to be desired. After a few minutes, my sensory nerves got used to it and began conversing as the flight awaited orders from the Aviation Ministry to allow the flight to take off. Apparently Imphal “International” Airport do not have clearance to take off at night, some security reasons!! 5pm is considered night!! The boys from the border security forces grew impatient and so was everyone. We were served 2 pieces of biscuit neatly packed in an aluminum foil and a drink, fruity. I had gotten friendly with the guys and began to feel at home again, forgetting the body odours! They were all flying for the first time and were pretty excited and asked several questions about flight security and what ifs. At 7:30pm, the flight crew finally announced that they couldn’t get the clearance and have to cancel the flight. We all headed for the exit without much delay. We just wanted to get out as it got really stuffy.

As I step out, the fresh air was a welcome change. A little disappointed, a little excited to be home again. My phone battery died as usual and my laptop battery had drained out from using in the flight. I found a good Samaritan by the name, Clinton and took his phone to call up my sis in Delhi for that’s the only number I remember. She called up my sis in Imphal to go pick me up. I was looking for an auto or a taxi but this is Manipur. After dark, such necessity isn’t available due to fear of police, security armed forces and insurgents. Not many people venture out after dark. My sis finally came to pick me up at around 8:15pm with my aunt driven by a friend and neighbor, Andrew. There was a lot of commotion in the Air India office. The Manager was obviously not available and his phone switched off. The only ground staff available is a lady who wasn’t able to help. I had earlier asked for a phone charger point and she simply said, “I don’t have it. You should have it. How can you not have it?”. Not wanting to argue as there were lots more to trouble her, I simply left. 

I finally reach home around 9pm and my.. it was great to have home cooked food again! It was tastier than usual. Pumpkin mixed with dried meat and a beef skin chutney along with boiled cabbage. Sweet. 

I reported back to the airport around 8:30am as requested and finally got the check-in done. This time, my luggage was 29kg! I had an extra packet. I requested the lady in the counter to allow the extras and she smiled. I had another request, “Could you also change my seat? The body odour of the border security force guys aren’t as pleasant”. She looked up at me, a little shocked and smiled again, “I’ll see what I can do”. Such a kid I am but I was all smiles to see that my seat is now 7C!  

Anyways, here I am waiting to board the flight surrounded by two beautiful girls, Gracy, a nursing student and Rinky Sharma, a B.Tech student who are traveling to Hyderabad and Guwahati respectively. Rinky is one among the most beautiful girls I’ve ever met! I’ll give her that.

If there’s nothing written below it simply means, I have reach safely and there’s no incident that happened further. Or I simply felt the blog had gotten too long!

PS: There are quiet a few good looking girls. Feasts my eyes haha ;)

Sendra Resort in Manipur – Loktak Lake
Winter holidays in Imphal, Manipur