The Daily Post : Tourist

In response to daily post’s one-word prompt: Tourist

Summer is a great time to travel outside our city. The weather usually is better and it’s the time when  kids get a long vacation of two months. Flights are on schedule most of the time, unless the odd times when there is an interruption due to the technical problems with the plane and one gets stranded on an unknown place for a considerable length of time. It does not happen frequently, when it does, passengers are not thrilled.

I was once travelling to Dhaka, on my way there was a stop over at Frankfurt, Germany for ten hours, there was no decent place to sit at that airport. I recall there were  exactly three benches where I found passengers sleeping. I was fortunate to get a cart where I put my handbag and my small suitcase. Throughout the ten hours I was there I couldn’t find a place to sit and relax.

The lounges at the airport belonged to different airlines, these were locked so no one could get in. I was travelling by Qatar airways, they didn’t seem to care that we had no place to go.

It was a trying experience for me, after this incidence I made sure my stopover was never  at Frankfurt.

……………………………… 🙂

Daily Prompt: Middle Seat

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It turns out your neighbor on the plane/bus/train(or the person sitting at the next table at the coffee shop)is a very chatty tourist.Do you try to switch seats, go for a non-committal brief small talk, or make this person your new best friend?

Only recently I was traveling to Montreal with my daughter, my seat was in the middle, my daughter took the aisle seat, the occupant of the window seat hadn’t arrived yet. I was hoping it would stay vacant, squeezing herself in the aisle was the occupant, there was hardly any room for me to stand to let her in. I could only apologize and say, ” I’m Sorry, there is no room for me  to stand, can you hop on over?”

She seemed a delightful person, she replied, “yes I can.”

I thought she will say something, from the time she sat down which was two and a half hours, till the time the plane landed, she stayed quiet. Occasionally I saw her taking pictures of what she could see outside,which didn’t seem much.

I didn’t have to change my seat, I was happy I didn’t have to, the airline charges $30.00 dollars if the passengers want to change seats. I know because we had to pay that amount  they put us far away from each other,even though we bought the tickets at the same time, not separately, my daughter bought both the tickets.

……………………………… 🙂

Alphie and his family have decided to go back home

Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: The Forgotten Hero

English: Eden Gardens cricket ground in Kolkat...
English: Eden Gardens cricket ground in Kolkata, India during the 2011 Indian Premier League (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Rabindranath Tagore with Mahatma Gand...

English: Rabindranath Tagore and Indira Devi i...

English: Rabindranath Tagore and Indira Devi in Valmiki-Pratibha, 1881. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

"Ra-Tha" wooden seal by Rabindranath...

“Ra-Tha” wooden seal by Rabindranath Tagore. Source: Rabindranath Tagore and his World of Colours (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An example of handwritten Bengali script. Part...

An example of handwritten Bengali script. Part of a poem written by Rabindranath Tagore in 1926 in Hungary. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kolkata on the Hooghly

Kolkata on the Hooghly (Photo credit: seaview99)

Alphie ,Susan, and Gepetto changed their booking.They will now go to Kolkata .They will stay in the city for a day.From there they will fly to Karachi.Their stay in Karachi will be for two days. They will leave Karachi after two days en route to Canada.On the way there will be a stop at Heath Row airport in London.There will be a two hour stop at Heath Row.Then they will board the plane to Toronto.This is their itinerary at the moment.

There was a  sudden change in their plan.Gepetto was missing school.All the schools re-open  after the summer in early September.Alphie wanted to go back.Gepetto had already missed all of September.It was wise to go back as soon as possible,Alphie said. The family wanted to see part of Bengal.Ranu was a Bengali. She will be able to show some interesting places.Tomorrow morning we will fly to kolkata,arrangement has been made for our stay in the hotel for a night.They plan to visit Shanti Niketan,the school founded by Rabindranath Tagore.

The day has finally arrived for our journey to Kol Kata.Gepetto was sad to leave Delhi,he had so much fun visiting so many beautiful places.He loved the Taj Mahal. He bought a tiny replica of the building.Kol Kata Airport is named after a famous Bengali.THe name of the airport is Netaji Subhas chandra Bose international air port.It took two hours and five minutes by Indian airlines to arrive in KolKata.Hyatt Regency hotel was booked for the night.

From the airport we took a cab to the hotel.The receptionist was a lady.she was extremely friendly.She showed us our rooms.Alphie ordered room service.The food was European style.I was not comfortable ordering,Indian food.We had supper and afterwards made plans where we  would go for a visit first.A list was made up and we went to bed.We only had a day but made sure to visit as many  important places in the time we had.

Our first stop is Fort William.It was named after King William The third of England.It was established during the time of the British rule in 1696.A new fort was built after the old one was damaged by the war of Plassey in 1757 The construction began  shortly after the war, and was completed in 1780.The next point of interest for us is The Eden Gardens. Gepetto was eager to see it because it is a cricket stadium.It is a large stadium about 120,000 people can be accommodated.From the Eden gardens We went on to Botanical Gardens.It is 8km away from the city.It was built in 1787.It contains about  12000 living perennial plants and millions of dried out plants collected from all over the world.The main attraction in that garden was the Banyan tree.it has the second largest canopy in the world.The gardens also have trees of rarest  variety..Next is the Birla Mandir,it is known as Tara Mandal as well.There are more than a hundred astronomical projects dealing with facts of astronomy space science as well as  myths concerning stars  and planets.We were short of time.We could not visit Shanti Niketan founded by Rabindranath Tagore.I was disappointed.I wanted to see it in person.I could also give them a lesson in Bengali.I had to keep in mind,I could only take them to places,they wanted to see.

After moving from one place to another we were tired.It was time to head back to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose airport to go to Karachi,Pakistan. We boarded the Indian Airlines in the evening.While on the plane,Alphie wanted to know about Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.He sat next to me.Susan and Gepetto wanted to sleep.

Subha Chandra Bose also known as Netaji(the revered leader).He was the most prominent Indian Nationalist,who attempted to liberate India from British rule.He was born on January 23rd,1897 in Cuttack,Orissa.Although his name is not mentioned that much as Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru  ,he fought just as hard as them for India’s independence from British rule.Throughout his political career the liberation of India remained his foremost political goal.

Jawaharlal Nehru had said,after his death ,”alongwith his abiding love for his country,he held an equally passionate hatred of the imperial power that ruled it.

We did not have that many interesting places to visit in Kol kata,but enjoyed the visit.

It is time to say,Adios Amigos from me ,Ranu,Alphie,Susan and Gepetto.

Netaji House at Kolkatta. The house from where...

Netaji House at Kolkatta. The house from where Netaji Escaped (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The location where brilliant Indian poet and N...

The location where brilliant Indian poet and Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore was both born and died. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rabindranath Tagore won the Nobel prize for li...

Rabindranath Tagore won the Nobel prize for literature. It is the first Nobel prize won by Asia. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)