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Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India
I'm a frood who knows where his towel is.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Back in the land of snake charmers and special economic zones

Date: 06/23/2011

My Jet Airways flight boarding at Brussels.
My flight failed to crash and burn on the way to India. Consequently, I am back in the land of snake charmers and special economic zones, the land of cows and computer programmers. The heat wasn't appalling when I landed. It was only about 98 degrees Fahrenheit. Phew!
A shot from the air.

I've never liked how much larger the symbol for the plane appears when compared to the symbol for the final destination. I always worry that the plane won't fit in the city.

Euclid defined a line as an entity of infinite length and zero width. Clearly, he had never been to India. Lines, though unending, are bizarre entities in India because people behind you in the line stand a little bit to the side in a way that makes it a little bit unclear which of you is actually in front. This yields the line the breadth of two to three people. In such situations, you have to watch them closely. If they sense your distraction for a second, they'll slip ahead of you and pretend that that is where they were to begin with. I experienced this betrayal several times in the immigration line last night.

The new airport terminal in Delhi has these gigantic hands as decorative pieces in the immigration area. The shot does no justice to the chaos of the "line" I was in.

Clearly, I've been abroad far too long and forgotten the tricks of my clever countrymen. However, I did note that people seemed less likely to perpetrate these linear swindles on non-Indians. I asked them some of them about it:

Pranay: "So you clearly pushed ahead of me, but why did you let the Chinese gentleman go?"
Stranger 1: "I don't want them to think ill of our country, you know. They're guests."
Stranger 2: "We can't expect them to know the tricks of the country so we have to be kind and welcoming."

Ah, I love my country and the welcoming spirit of my countrymen.
Ras Malai: The most delicious dessert in the world. A very hearty breakfast, but after six of them today, I feel some tightness in my arteries.

P.S: My reward for dealing with the dust, heat, and line jumping was a delicious breakfast of three ras malais (a delectable dessert made from milk and cream) and I finished another three over the course of the day. I think I need some serious diet counseling.

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