You are about to go out of town. You alight from you car at, say, the tony T3 terminal, get your bags out and hand them to a polite porter who puts them on a trolley. You scan the screen, proceed to your counter, check in and whiz through immigration. You then go along the smooth walkalator, your strolley gliding behind you and before you can say Jack Robinson you are in the lounge sipping a campari awaiting your departure call. Good grief, what a nightmare.
Thank god, reality is nothing like this. No, you alight only to escape being mowed down by a SUV, Jairam Ramesh notwithstanding, behind you. You lug your luggage onto a trolley on which the wheels are stuck. You race around like a headless chicken looking for your counter. The walkalator is not working so you drag your strolley over a dense carpet with motifs done by a Dali gone mad until you reach your gate only to find you are at the wrong one. Now that’s more like it. Chaos is the cornerstone of our lives. Be it our railway stations, airports or any public place, nothing can proceed smoothly. All proceedings must be accompanied by breakdowns, hysteria, shoving, jostling and the screaming of oaths and imprecations. The only good thing about most airports is that there is poor connectivity so we can be spared the horror of our co-passengers yelling inanities into the phone while we are trying to recover our wits.
Some nations are born to orderliness, we revel in muddling along. If that does not suit you, we recommend that you stay home. In fact, the manner in which people actually catch flights despite the mayhem could be the theme of a reality show. Perhaps, we could get Rakhi Sawant to wait at the entrance and scream abuses at passengers just to spice up the whole thing. That should see the volume of passenger traffic going up.