Friday, July 22, 2011

Late Night

There is a faint recollection of an evening. But now it's late night. The difference and contrast amuses me. You are with your closest friends again. You are sitting in the same seat as before too, but you are not driving this time. You thought this kind of meet-up wouldn't happen, but it has already happened and you are on your way back.

This time it is late night. It is winter and half the car is freezing. The entire drive has been through heavy fog. In fact, one could look straight at the sun in broad daylight. You want to curl up under a blanket, be warm and comfortable... and that seems to be the last thing possible at this time.

Easy conversation is a distant memory. Everyone understands each other perfectly, but something still seems off. You thought you were back on great terms, but now you question yourself. At least we all understand each other... so well that sometimes we don't even have to wait for the sentence to begin to know what is going to be said. Knowing your friends so well is disconcerting.

There are no fireworks, no city skyline. Just the fog and the taillights of the truck you are following. I realize that I don't care for the city and neither did I care the last time. I just hope that the few of us who met, and the few others who couldn't make it, all get together somewhere. Sometime. Hopefully not too far in the future. The trip did not end in a city without fog... but let's hope that it will clear off soon.
 If this doesn't make sense, skip it. It was intended to be personal. And I wanted to publish it anyway.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Enchiladas and Mechanisms

A collection of posted status messages and unposted but intended tweets that might describe my trip to Mexico:

Pre (and during) flight:
- Me vs Airline Baggage restrictions
- Okay Lufthansa, I know they speak Spanish in Mexico, but that is no reason to send me to Madrid.
- 12 hours into the trip, I'm still on the same continent, closer to home than where I was 5 hours ago.

In Mexico, in the inter-city bus:
- Call off the search parties, these Mexican buses have free wifi!
- Am I in Mexico or am I doing the Pune-Satara leg in a Volvo?

In Guanajuato:
- This hotel room is better than home. #canIstayhereforever?
- Describing my research to people infinitely more qualified than me suddenly makes it interesting again.
- The curse of the light poles is now officially in Mexico too.
- Someone should export Mexican food to France
- Chili makes beer better. #micheladas

Mexico City!
- People who look like me, food stalls on the streets, shops selling bags, utensils etc, people shouting out the list of candies they are selling in the train: Looks like this place has been lifted out of Dadar in Mumbai.
- Dear pre-hispanic Mexicans: next time, please build the pyramids closer.
- Dear modern-day Mexicans: please explain how you drink so much.

- Dear Mexican airline people.... I was asking where the airline desk is, and you ushered me through security without a hitch. The fact that I got to the gate without a boarding pass is your fault, not mine. So why are you checking my bag when I want to go back out?
- If this bus has even a tiny accident, I'm gonna lose my knees. #stupid-leg-room.
- Heh.. there is a university in Cancun... yea.. right.. they "study"
- Okay.. I need some answers. Which idiot has been making Aztec sacrifices to the rain god? Here's something you should know: 1) Sacrifices are illegal. 2) Rain has been following me for days now
- Yay! Sunshine! No rain! waitaminute.....Who turned on the sauna?
- Someone replaced the sand on the beach with baby powder! Is it because this is the New World?
- And the water! Don't mess with my head. Just tell me how you made it so clear?

Journey back:
- Dear Lufthansa, you said it was a window seat. No seriously, you promised it was a window seat. This one is not even at the aisle.
- Apparently, it's okay to get duty-free Tequila in your backpack from Mexico to Frankfurt, but not okay to continue carrying it to Nice. So if you hear of a Tequila Party in Frankfurt, remember who actually bought it.

A little note:
Dear Mexicans, you are just like us Indians. We look the same. We eat spicy food. Our cities are overcrowded, and alive. The metros, trains, buses are full of stinky people who need a shower.
... And we all want to go to the US of A.