Since my wake-up call by radio I’m highly excited about the three flights that are scheduled for today. I’m not that relaxed as it comes to flying, every landing is a personal victory for me.
Around 08.43 my father arrives to pick me up at my mothers house. He said he should be here at 08.30, so in his therms he is quiet on time or even early. Luckily we planned a little delay so it is no problem that we depart a few minutes later. I say goodbye to my brother and off we go, heading to Schiphol.
Even though it is holyday time, it is not that busy at Schiphol. I find my check-in desk easily and before I know it I have to say goodbye to my dad. It feels kind of strange to go through the bordercontrol alone for the first time in my life, but at the same time it is giving me a feeling of freedom. On my way to the gate I pass a small airport version of the Rijksmuseum and I decide to go in for a short time. My plane leaves in 1 hour so there is plenty of time. Inside I find a dozen of paintings made by dutch masters showing mostly cows and farms as a national pride, I like the idea.
When I enter the plane and take my windowseat next to two real russians, I look out of my window and immediately have a surprising view. On the observation deck, which I can see from behind my window, I can see my dad staring at my plane. He told me he should go there but I didn’t think he would be able to come this close to my plane. Unfortunately he doesn’t see me, even when I wave to him or try to push my face against the window (that must have been a funny experience for the russians next to me). I make a picture of my dad as some kind of evidence later on and prepare for take off. The moment I loose sight on him it feels like I am definetely on my way and the journey really starts. I really don’t like flying, but if you want to see the world in short time, you just simply have to!
Airborne! It is just another 60 minutes to Moscow and I have to pee enormously, but I don’t want to annoy the sleeping Russians next to me, so I hold up. I made the flight to Moscow before in early 2009, but this time it is much more nerve wrecking. Even though I read a book and made some video’s and pictures, there is a lot of time left to think about the fact that I am more or less 10 kilometers above ground. I know I shouldn’t think about this nor what will happen if something goes wrong, but I can’t help it. Hopefully after three flghts this will be over.
Getting out of the airplane in Moscow I immediately felt the overwhelming heat as promised by the wheaterforecast. The terminal where I have to wait for about 4 hours is at least 30 degrees celcius and very crowded. In the utopian hope to find a nice cold spot without people and with energy for my laptop and a toilet that doesn’t smell like everything except flowers, I walk along the whole terminal, because there is plenty of time. After maybe 15 minutes of walking I enter an area that is completely empty and I take an escalator upstairs. I actually can’t believe my eyes, I find a very big open space, it looks like a huge new terminal that is in use for just 10 minutes. It is nice and cold, there is power and there are less than 10 people. When I even find a toilet my lucky day is complete.
On the flight from Moscow to Delhi I meet a kind Indian guy named Anoop. He tells me a lot of things about his country and what we can see in Delhi, where he lives. It is really a nice conversation and I even don’t think about the plane that just departed. Though the flight from Moscow to Delhi was longer than the flight from Amsterdam to Moscow, I didn’t feel uncomfortable at all.
When I got out the plane in Delhi my cultureshock immediately started, the moment I step from the plane into the airporttunnel I smell India! It is hard to discribe it but a very dense, moisturous Mac Donalds smell comes close to it, hopefully this is not too negative… In a few minutes I feel like I’m covered with a thin, sticky layer of this smell. Once I’m outside the airport there are sultans and uniformed Indians with guns everywhere. It is kind of frightening for me, everywhere people with beards and tulbands, praying and hanging around in combination with that smell. I don’t really feel comfortable here, as pity as I think it is. Hopefully I will be used to it in about 30 days and I can enjoy the culture here.
While I type this text in a kind of Lunch/waitingroom, the power is gone in the building I’m in. All the lights go out at once and it scared me for a moment. But since nobody is taking any serious action like jumping up or screaming, I think it must be ok. And indeed, 10 minutes later the power is back. I have to wait for 5 hours now, hopefully time will fly now I am this close to Kathmandu.