Terminal, Pune, Tom Hanks & me

@ 18:57 hrs, SMS:- From: TA – Spicejet

Dear Passenger, your Flt SG219 dtd 15-May-09 is delayed and will now depart at 0005 hrs from PUNE.

@ 19:24 hrs, SMS:- From: TA- Spicejet

Dear Passenger, your Flt SG219 dtd 15-May-09 is delayed and will now depart at 0035 hrs from PUNE.

@ 21:06 hrs, SMS:- From: TA- Spicejet

Dear Passenger, your Flt SG219 dtd 15-May-09 is delayed and will now depart at 0100 hrs from PUNE.

@ 00:05 hrs, SMS:- From: TA- Spicejet (Now the date is 16/5/09)

Dear Passenger, your Flt SG219 dtd 15-May-09 is delayed and will now depart at 0140 hrs from PUNE.

The fact was the flight started at around 0155 hrs on 16 – May – 09 instead of 23:10 hrs on 15 – May – 09 and i reached home at 04:55 hrs at my home in Chennai.

I’m not saying anything about how the Airlines treated us, what they offered us during our wait (or should i say what they could have offered or didn’t offer) et al here ……. Just that no more last flights from any city back to your home town at any cost is my decision.

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Chennai to Bengalooru

After my various trips to Bengalooru by various modes, this week i managed to do a morning – evening by my car to the IT capital and back.

You’d recall my various trips to Bengalooru earlier here & here through the other means and my take on the New Devanahalli Airport.

Some interesting facts/Pictures about the drive are given below:-

  • 350 odd KMs between the two cities
  • Covered exactly 731 KMs starting at my home and reaching back my home.
  • Saw the Nokias, Motorolas, Caparos, Flextronics, Foxconns etc. and quite a number of engineering colleges on the way. I guess opening an engineering college seems to be easier than opening a primary school.
  • Passed through such village names on the journey Pootuthaakku (பூட்டுதாக்கு), Damal (தாமல்), Sumaithaangi (சுமைதாங்கி), Vengili (வெங்கிளி), Poigai (பொய்கை), Sethuvaalai (செதுவாளை) to name a few interesting ones.
  • The village names after Krishnagiri towards Hosur are mostly ending with “halli”
  • The breakfast at Grand Krishna in the Vellore outskirts was good
  • The median gardens are well maintained and attended to. Saw atleast 5/6 groups at various medians attending, pruning, medicating these plants across the stretch.
  • There are 5 Toll Plaza’s enroute, 1st is at Nemili (one way Rs 30 & return Rs 40), 2nd at Samudram (Rs 30 one way & Rs 40 return), 3rd being at Pallikonda (Rs 50 one way & Rs 65 for return), 4th at Vaniambadi (Rs 38 for one way & Rs 53 for return) and last at Krishnagiri (One way Rs 25 & Rs 38 for return). All costs are for Car / Jeep / Van and return is within 24 hours.
  • Got stuck while returning near Hyundai factory owing to a fire accident because of two vehicles collision (one was a readymix concrete vehicle and other not too sure, as it was in the gorge). But surprisingly the traffic block cleared fast post the fire engine tending to the fire immediately.
  • Overall it was a drive worth the penny and absolutely pleasure with the kind of roads till Hosur, once the 3 flyovers get over (incl. the 14.8 Kms one crossing electronic city) the other side of the road inside Karnataka will also be pleasure to drive.

the flowers in the median

The heavy vehicle traffic

Picturusque hillocks

Some ups & downs

Good reflectors to aid driving in the night

Clear directional signages

So i’m waiting to pack my bags to do a trip again on this road, but now with the family and not official.

Devanahalli aka Bengaluru Intl. Airport

Stepped through the BIAL airport last week, following hit my mind immediately

1. The airport is much better and functional than the New Hyderabad Airport

2. Directional signages are pretty clear

3. Though it looks smaller, i presume it should be of the same size.

4. The Taxi, Volvo Bus stands are pretty clear & visible … no possibility of confusions.

5. The road leading to Hebbal was good and the traffic was choc-o-bloc at the KR Puram hanging bridge, it just took 40 minutes to take a U turn to go towards Indira Nagar via CV Raman Nagar at this bridge.

6. 46 Kms (to 100 feet Road – Indira Nagar) took 1hr and 50 mts at 0700 hrs ….

7. Return i had asked the Cab to take Mekhri Circle, so saved about 5 kms and reached the airport in 1 hr 5 mts. Was it because it was 1530 hrs … no idea ….

8. The Volvo’s & Airlift seems to be equally pocket friendly & accessible. (Next time to try these)

Edited to add : 9. Very small toilets …. no space to keep your luggage in the toilets ….

On the whole it looks like a good choice of Airport ……

The above picture is while landing (obviously with the Radio Functions in an OFF mode)

Air lift to the BIAL airport !

The web / log world seems to be abuzz with activity about the new BIAL airport coming up (slated for opening on 24th may’08), the distances, the hurdles to reach, the costs etc. So i was naturally intrigued by this stand-up scroll placed at the HAL airport about it costing just Rs 300/- to reach the new BIAL airport from anywhere in Bangalore.

Tried their site, which doesn’t offer more details apart from the ones offered in the banner. Except for confusing more by stating ” Bangalore New airport to anywhere in Rs 300/=” so is it offered only FROM the new BIAL airport or To the airport also?

Need to check out when i travel next …….

At the departure lounge

I love the sound of the word lounge, that’s why i added that to the title, else it’s plain n simple departure terminal. As i said yesterday i was there at the Anna Intl. Airport Terminal y’day (or was it today morning !, yes today at 1am) to see my cousin sis LV off to LON. Though i had to get up at 12:30 midnight and reach the airport & i was bleary eyed, i liked going to the airport at that wee hour.

Main reason, i get to watch a mixed bag of feelings around me at that time from relatives and friends of these travellers. First things, LV after butterflies in her stomach on her first abroad and flight trip, managed it well with the weight of luggage (which was well under 20Kgs and 7Kgs for check-in and cabin baggages resply).

While i waited at the visitors hold area till she check’s in the luggages, gets a boarding pass was watching the emotions around. From the i-have-been-abroad-many-times g’men & ladies who walked in with the least of luggages and breezed through the process to Men-leaving-family-back-after-vacation types who were saying goodbye’s many a times to their spouses, kid(s) & parents(and in-laws) to Just-married-men-leaving-their-spouses leaving their spouses with pain, love & instructions on how& when to join them to unskilled-or-blue-collar-employees leaving for greener pastures from their native villages with lots of fear, apprehension about their work/employer & leaving their loved ones (their sons and daughters playing peekaboo , catch me games inside the terminals and very happy to have seen a landmark to fill their classmates about this trip) to IT geeks with their parents/spouses being seen of to US with a mixed-fashion-jeans-university tee-thiruneeru-on-their-forehead to fathers-seeing-off-daughters-to-her-mom-at-abroad-for-holidays affectionate but still worried to see their grown up daughter flying off with a friends family to meet her mom who’s employed abroad to many more such range of emotions  and make you a silent spectator to such swings of moods and emotions around you. ♥¤€£¥∞ (these special signs have connections to many of the above emotions).

P.s: While i was searching for an apt image of the Airport terminal i found the above picture in Google search and it was one of my friend’s. Thanks & Credit to CC / Ravages (both are same ;-))

Midnight errand

Tonite i’ll be doing the midnight errand (can it be called that way!) to the Intl airport to drop LV (my cousin sis). She’s off to LON to see her pregnant daughter (missed her count in my stork season). The packing, repacking & weighing ordeal seems to be happening endlessely at home. Is 21 Kgs the right weight or would they allow 23-24 Kgs? Can 7.5Kgs hand luggage be the right allowed quantity or can we squeeze some more? Should the leather jerkins be around the shoulder to escape the weighing process? If that so can i pull the suitcase, hand baggage, Hand bag and still carry the jerkins with me in Saree?

I love seeing this happening at home (sadistic pleasure! No …. amusement value)