Welcome to Darkside Daily

When I'm not writing about my experiences in this journey called 'life', I'm singing and uploading my own interpretations of modern music. Click on "Cover Songs" to hear them, or on the YouTube logo on the right to see my YouTube channel.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Weight Issues

And so I'm back. It feels good to sit in the familiar surroundings of my room, with my computer and my music playing, as opposed to the annoyance of sitting in dingy cyber cafes with their cramped cubicles, horrendous machines and nerve-frying Hindi music, which is what I've had to endure the last three weeks.

Of course, the last three weeks have been far from unpleasant. I had a total blast, right from day 1 of landing in Bangalore. Even though I had managed to keep the date of my arrival in India somewhat of a secret, I was pleasantly surprised to be bombarded with texts within an hour of landing at the airport. Good news travels fast. So does bad news though. Let's move on.

I'm not going to attempt to give a detailed report of my trip, instead let me just summarise by saying that it involved lots of quality time with my bro's, my sistah's, and a certain someone. As my time in India drew to a close, I looked back and couldn't believe that I had managed to squeeze in so much in such a short time; I felt as if I'd spent three months there and not three weeks. I have to disagree with Elton John here because 'goodbye' (and not 'sorry') is, in my opinion, one of the hardest words to say and one of the hardest acts to actually carry out.

As I boarded my flight for home in Bangalore, I was in a foul mood. First of all I was leaving behind some amazing people, some of them probably never to be seen again (well, for a long time anyway). Secondly I had slept only 4 hours after somehow managing to drag myself out of bed at 530am to make it to the airport in time. Thirdly, I had some drama before checking in my luggage. Yes, the airport never fails to provide some entertainment for me. Yay.

Usually when I return from India, I always end up carrying loads of food stuff, sweets and other Indian delicacies back home for the family. Hence even though I had gone with just the bare minimum amount of clothing (DeeCee, control yourself) my bags were loaded!

So I toss my bag onto the weighing thingy at the check-in counter and hand over my passport and ticket. The man looks at the scales, frowns, and looks back at me. "You have excess luggage" he says. I look at the scales myself. Sure enough, there it was in bright red on the display - 26kgs. "You are only allowed 20kgs on this flight, sir. I will have to charge you for 6 kgs excess weight". Now I've been travelling for years, and I know the drill. Sure, 20kgs is the limit but usually they're flexible and let me through as long as it's below 30kgs. Just my luck to run into Mr. By-The-Books.

So he asks me to put some of my luggage into the hand luggage bag to reduce the weight, and I say I doubt I can manage that because there's food items in that bag. Suddenly his eyebrows shot up, and he says "Sir! You cannot carry food items on the plane!" I explained that it was just chips and nothing bottled e.t.c., but he was adamant. "Sir, NO FOOD!". Now, my mom loves me. She does. But if I turned up at my doorstep with only myself and my clothes, she would have burned me alive. No, correction; she would have set me on fire, and just before I passed into the light she would have put the fire out and then sent me on a plane back to India to get her stuff. And THEN she would have burned me alive.

So I take my bags back to the seating area and start repacking my bags. I tried stuffing the food items in the check-in luggage bag but most of it would have got destroyed, so it was hard to manage. In the end, after close to 20 minutes of packing and repacking, I took my bags back to the counter. Before I went to the man though, I asked two airport officials about this 'no food in the hand luggage' nonsense and both said that there was absolutely no problem taking the stuff on the plane. Needless to say, I was simmering inside as I dropped my bag onto the scales again. We both look at the numbers - 23kgs.

"I'm going to have to charge you for 3kgs sir"

I looked back at him. I thought about beating him to death on top of his precious scales with the 5kg aata flour bag I had in my luggage.

"You have GOT to be kidding me", I said. "You're going to charge me for 3kgs?!?"

He then gave this long defensive speech about how it wasn't his fault, and that he personally WANTED me to get on the plane, but 'rules are rules' and yada yada yada...

"Look, are you going to let me through or not??" I started flexing my right hand and prepared myself to rip through my bag for the flour bag. Somehow he must have sensed this and he agreed to allow me through this time, as long as 'next time' I was more 'careful' because I won't be this lucky again. I wanted to tell him the same thing.

But that wasn't all. Just to make things worse, after emigration stamped my passport the security went through my hand luggage and called me to a side. "What's this?" the man asked me. I looked inside.

Rats. I had forgotten about that. My friends had gifted me an expensive Ferrari Black perfume for my upcoming birthday just before I left, and in my haste I had forgotten to pack it into my other bag.

"Perfume, sir" I said. (Weak smile)

"Is it more than 100ml?", he asks.

I turn it over and say a silent prayer. It hits the ceiling and comes right back.

"125ml, sir" I say (weaker smile).

"Sorry, can't allow".

So long story short, I had to run all the way back to the check-in counter, plead with the guys there, and then allow them to check in my precious hand luggage with the perfume inside. I watched the bag go on the conveyor belt and just prayed that by some miracle the chips and biscuits inside survived the trip.

So finally, I got on the plane. I sent messages to my friends, and sat back in my seat to sulk. But that wasn't the end of it. I glanced up and looked into the business class section of the plane. There, squeezed into a seat, was one of the largest and most obese men I have ever seen. The fact that he managed to fit in just one seat was a testament to the luxurious comfort that business class seats could provide to the more average sized individual.

And to think they were going to charge me for 3kgs of excess weight! Who's paying for his excess weight?!?!?!

Life is so unfair.


PseudoRandom said...

Hehehe the number of times I have been prepared to say "well apparently I'm 11kg underweight, so it doesn't matter if my luggage is 10kg over, no?" :-) Unfortunately (or fortunately, rather) I haven't had any issues at Heathrow or Colombo yet despite rarely being within my luggage allowance, so I haven't had the chance to use my witty excuse.

So did the chips and biscuits survive?

DeeCee said...

sucks somewhat...

TheWhacksteR said...

hmmm the things we go thru eh.. hope you had a good trip YAAAR!

Jerry said...

Airport people hate you man. Just face it.

And I just noticed, you pack up for India, and suddenly mumbai turns into a Call of Duty set up, and then it all gets wrapped up, and here you come running home...


Naal said...

weeelll....it does kinda makes sense...just not for happily overweight people like me....:D...get used to it tho....this is how it is going to be....and in any case u were flying outside India...within India, usually, it doesnt cause so much of a problem.....


krazykyd said...

it involved lots of quality time with my bro's, my sistah's, and a certain someone..... and what about your step-bro's ?!?!?! :P

Gehan said...

pseudorandom: well miraculously they were alrite! some o the chips got a bit smashed but no one noticed.. hehe.. btw, 11kgs underweight?! i should have brought some indian food for u! ;D

DC: yes somewhat does... :)

Whackster: yeah, i did YAAR! :P

Jerry: ....is it that obvious.....?

Naal: well yes kinda makes sense and all but STILL! :D

KK: lol dude, i am SO sorry, i was swamped.. talk to u soon!

Sabby said...

"Who's paying for his excess weight?!?!?!"

Wait till you hit 40 and have a separate entity known as you tummy! =P

Charm Bracelet said...

hehe! Travelling's due for me next month, I shall remember this post when I pack!

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