Saturday, December 31, 2011

Startle Rattle and Battle

My aunt arrived in Mumbai en route to Paris to attend my sister's childbirth in 2001.  We discussed about various relatives and exchanged information regarding their status and whereabouts.  After a sumptuous dinner we hit the sack hoping to get up next morning and go for some shopping and sight seeing in Mumbai.  Alas our sleep was broken by a telephonic ring tone.  My aunt received the bad news that her son-in-law was no more.

Aunt was in agony that by hook or crook she wanted to be at her daughters side to pacify her.  She had lost her husband in a tragic railway accident while travelling to coastal Andhra at night.  He was trying to board a moving train and was caught between the platform and train gap.  He was killed in this tragic circumstances.  The cops had identified his body with the help of the identity card in his wallet.  They requested the family member to come over and collect the body.

Meanwhile we ran out of option to send my aunt quickly to Chennai.  The midnight air India flight was a blessing in disguise.  When we reached the airport the plane was still 3 hours from take off.  The Air India counter clerk was rude and asked us to come after half an hour, despite explaining the tragic circumstances.  We waited outside consoling our Aunt.  After half an hour we again approached the counter clerk, he asked us to wait some more time.

This infuriated me and I uttered they want to make money out of the tragedy also.  This got the clerk's attention and he was furious.  He thought i was accusing him of  trying to make money by expecting bribe.  I was worried whether the fares would be hiked up.  Than I clarified that he was trying to make money for the airline concerned.  He was kind enough to explain that this is unlike private airlines.  The midnight flights are heavily discounted.  At last the misunderstanding was sorted out.  He issued a flight ticket for Rs 2200 which was much lesser than Rs 3600 which is the normal fare.  We paid for the ticket through credit card and ensured that my aunt boarded the flight at 3 am.  She was thankful that we sponsored her ticket to Chennai in the hour of crisis.  We got of the clutch of being targeted by the airline official for accusing them of making money.  Thus quick witted think got me out of a sticky situation.


DeEpAK KaRtHiK (420) said...

haha :P
good luck for contest sir !

Farida Rizwan said...

Good for you. That quick wit came handy at the right time!

Sujatha Sathya said...

very sad incident - the death i mean. so tragic

Anonymous said...

Good that at least the situation did not catch up with you ..

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