Thursday, November 01, 2007

Close encounters...

4 pm. I have gone through security check and am waiting in the Security Lounge for the boarding call. I am damn sleepy. I have only a small handbag as I am returning by the 9 pm flight. I doze off.

I am awakened by a child crying quite badly. It is a small kid with his mom. Mom looks around and as is the practice at airports, spots me, a safe bet to latch onto for, baby sitting, luggage sitting etc.

I am the usual target.

Maybe I should look a little dangerous so that moms in airport don’t consider me a safe bet.

Mom comes and plonks herself next to me. She smiles at me. I smile back while inwardly I groan.

She asks me if I can look after her baggage while she warms her sons milk bottle.

I agree resignedly.

She has a distinct American accent. My guess is she is second generation American Indian. Her Indian attire, garish, give her away as an ABCD.

She returns with hot milk in a bottle for her two year old son. While he sips the milk from the bottle, she feeds him samosas. He seems bright and intelligent like most kids raised in the US. He speaks fluent Tamil and English.

She offers me a samosa, which I politely decline. My mother has stuffed me with enough lunch to last me a week.

Mom then decides to go to the toilet. She tells her son that the nice girl, (she turns to me and asks my name) Anjali will look after him while mommy goes to the rest room. He seems okay with the deal.

She leaves for the rest room. Sons chatters with me with amazing maturity. He then looks at the Billboard and asks me what the scrolling text says. I look at him. His eyelids are droopy. He is squinting at the Billboard. It is then I realize that he is partially blind.

I am in shock and and have a huge lump in my comes back, thanks me profusely and says goodbye as Jet announces its flight. I was flying Kingfisher. How I wish I had booked Jet. Damn you Mr Vijay Mallya and your good service.

I feel so small.