Saturday, January 29, 2011

'Family' @ Newark Airport, New Jersey - USA

Sunrise a Newark Airport
Newark Airport
13 September 2010, 11:30 am

It is huge and I am at the wrong gate. They printed 102 on my boarding pass in Delhi but I am to be at 108. Luckily I am alone and have 8 hours to kill. So, if I please I can visit all 139 gates one by one and yet have time to reach mine J

I wander around...looking at shops. I venture into some, come out with a thing or two and a conversion table running in my mind. 3 dollar tooth brush! That would be almost 150 Indian Rupees. Why did I have to rush and forget mine at home! Anyway, most of my friends had advised me not to convert, coz it would cause only pain n no gain. I switched off my mental calculator. Even though it looked expensive, I vowed to buy something from the Metropolitan Museum Shop on my return journey.

I strolled into the tributary of gates leading up to gate no 99. How it feels to be totally aimless with no sense of time and have absolutely nothing to do has a pretty addictive touch to it :)

Vino & Volo looked like a serene place. People sitting on bar stools gives one a sense of good times. Never mind if they are just sipping on juices, it’s the bar stool that counts. Right next to it were the rest rooms.

I saw a couple struggling with two trolley-full of carryon baggage, a pair of infant twins and one toddler boy. I was amazed at their capacity and will power. Having three kids was ok but to travel with them merits an award! The little boy wanted to rush to the rest room. His crossed legs, bent torso and an impatient yell left nothing to imagination. “Mommieeeee hurry!” he begged.

The mother was trying her best. She handed the tiny twin to her to her husband (am assuming he was the husband, a boyfriend would have not looked so calm). The husband already had another child strapped to him. Holding two babies, one in his right hand and the other in left, he epitomised the sum total of patience men have to possess at times.

I was more concerned about the mother. Baby safely transferred, she was ripping Velcro after Velcro, trying to discard the baby holder (or whatever it is called). Must have been so frustrating. It seemed as if the little boy was all set to grace the hallway when Mommie managed to free herself of all the trappings and run after him. I wonder which one did they enter ‘mens’ or ‘womens’. I guess ‘womens’.

My eyes and thoughts then wandered to the poor father standing out with two children and two luggage carts. He tried to restrain one of the trolleys with his foot. That is when I saw another little boy behind it. A copy of the one that had just dashed into the bathroom. He was quiet and had a small backpack of his own.

O my God, they had two sets of twins. One set aged 4-5 years and the other under a year. My heart went out to the parents who were trying to manage it all so bravely. Such a contrast from those people sitting leisurely on the bar stools next door. I walked ahead. I am at the ‘leisurely’ stage in life right now. Never know when I will be standing outside the restrooms coping up with such challenges. Tough times but I look forward to them. Who says family values are lost on our generation???

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