( April 29-2010)
As it is said, every search commences with an obstacle. The same was with me. My journey began with missing the flight to Delhi, India. It definitely is a herculean task to leave pending work behind at work and taking a break seemed next to impossible for me. To add to this stress, during the late night emailing to clients, the laptop showed hints of crashing when the flight was scheduled at 10.45 am the next day. I had a fear of losing all the emails and relevant data, so I started the back-up activity at 23.00 hrs which continued till 9.20 hrs of next morning giving me a short cushion till check-in in time. As I reached the airport the check-in counter was closed forcing me to miss the flight. It was the last flight to New Delhi from Muscat during the day and the next flight was at mid night, the same day by Indian airlines which had no seats available. Option of flying next day was ruled out as the connecting train and other schedules would jeopardize the whole trip with a monetary loss as well. So I decided to secure a waiting list ticket to New Delhi in Indian Airlines and with an extra payment, managed to confirm it. Dad’s mantra of paisa pheko tamasha dheko “throw money; have fun” worked out during this time of dire need. Next, a verbal war started with Oman air to cancel the unused ticket and in the process I learnt a new rule that the return segment of the ticket cannot be used if a passenger didn’t use the outbound ( To) ticket. A new one way return ticket had to be secured before cancelling the return tickets. This unexpected change required me to post pone my check-in time with the hotel at New Delhi and re arrange the airport pick up from noon to early morning of next day. The consequence of missing the flight was to lose my precious sleep for third night in a row. The loss of money didn’t matter as much the loss of my precious sleep. What mattered the most was, I didn’t want to miss a meeting planned the next day which I had been waiting and longing for years. The meeting was my first point of glimpsing unknown me this summer. Experience of missing train is not new to me but missing a flight was. Looking back now, it was a fun experience.