Day 001 – Life at the Airport

_Captain’s Log, StarDate 2007.07.08-15.56_

I’m writing this at one end of a seemingly-mile long terminal at Charles De Gaulle Airport, Paris. The entire building has mostly a glass front, and I’m sitting near a corner where two walls meet, watching aircraft take-off. I know I should take some pictures but I’m just too lazy for that right now – besides I see enough of aircraft everyday. Only the view is different!

The first thing I noticed here is that there are more seats than there are people – something which can be seen in India only in, well, TV. Very well planned travellers’ lounge except for that fact that there’s more alcohol and perfumes on sale here than drinking water. It took me about 20 minutes to find a bottle of water, for which I paid E 2.10… that’s worth about two days’ lunch back home. The bottle is joining my personal collection of rare collectibles. And I still haven’t been able to phind a fone – apparently there is none.

The flight was uneventful – literally. Nothing happened. Till about 6 in the morning I was still recovering from the shock that I had actually managed to board the flight after all the chaos leading upto the time I left home. Even though I did manage to get everything done (with a LOT of help from my parents – I think it would have taken me another month to board the flight if Dad hadn’t been there!), I regret not having spent time with them. I’m saying “time” and not “enough time” because I didn’t spend any time with them at all. I keep trying to tell myself that everything takes longer than I think but HOW much longer is something I still need to understand!

Since everybody on the flight was presumably sleeping, the shades were down till about 10.30, at which time I pushed mine up to catch a fantastic view of the Swiss Alps – with the clouds merging into the snow at the tops of the peaks. They look so different from anything I’ve seen before (and I’ve seen a LOT of different mountains). For the few minutes that I was looking at the lush green Swiss countryside with its snow-capped peaks pass by, “global warming” seemed as alien a concept as “life without a laptop” 🙂

For that matter, even the air here at Paris is so clear – I could see for miles clearly when we were landing. I missed the Eiffel Tower, but clearly saw the Arc. (My first detailed view of the Arc came from the street-racing game “Midnight Club II”… and I must say the resemblance is pretty good). The next thing I noticed was that the cars on the roads were so FAST – again, so unlike what I’m used to seeing in inter-city flights back home. And you can actually see ROADS – clear stretches of tarmac with no vehicles on them!! Also saw what must be the TGV and some be-au-ti-ful trucks… like the Matchbox ones I used to play with as a kid (okay, I still play with them sometimes 😉 )

That’s all for now – I’m off to find some more water!


3 Responses to “Day 001 – Life at the Airport”

  1. Adi Says:

    I had a similar culture shock at Changi airport… I remember the first time you step on a travelator! “Hey gawsh they have a escalator in the ground and does not move up”….

    I bought Evian water bottle for 8 dollars and I thought I will die thirsty for sure! :-p

  2. Kartik Says:

    Evidently all the tap water is potable… I imagine you’re supposed to drink from the loo(?!)

  3. Adi Says:

    Hush dont say it lest somebody back home in desh know our dark secret!!

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