Amid the chaos at airport, I find my musings

It's this madness and charisma at the airports that draws me in

By Purva Grover

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Published: Thu 17 Aug 2017, 10:30 PM

Last updated: Fri 18 Aug 2017, 12:31 AM

Flights of all sorts, smooth or turbulent, make me nervous. I try to stay away from them, but each time life has its way over me I end up with a boarding pass in my hands. But what I do like are the airports; it is my only favourite part of the journey. Airports are many things to me. It's an observatory to get up close and personal to individual traits. It's where I will sit down and write my next novel, I often tell my publisher. I must confess that delayed flights don't make me upset, they just provide me more fodder for my manuscript. Last week, I added 2,500 words to the draft at the Shota Rustaveli Tbilisi International Airport. Now, what's made me fall in love with airports is tough to explain, after all love is like that, right? But, I am convinced the romance is going to last for a lifetime. This is my attempt to decode our relationship.

Just like there is method in madness, there is charisma in chaos. It's this madness and charisma at the airports that draws me in. Back-to-back announcements speak of exits and departures; rushed footsteps of late-comers; conversations in coffee shops suggesting who want the caffeine to kick in so that they can read on the flight or watch a flick; confessions of airport shopaholics at duty-free shopping areas; and restless (priceless) expressions of those whose bags arrive the last at the luggage belt (almost convinced that they're cursed) are worthy of being framed. The urgency to make that last call before you board the flight and the hope of connecting to a free Wi-Fi are other such moments. The Juicy Couture track pants, amongst other fashion items, seen on passengers in the Business Class queue is a lesson on what's ruling the runways and fashion streets.
And this by the way is just one chapter of the love tale. Ask me what's my favourite one?
Well, it's the aroma of airports. Yes, airports wear one, of a particular mesmerising type. No, this is not one of smelly socks of a fellow passenger or of the blueberry muffin from Costa Coffee or of the fresh posy that he's got for her. Neither is it of air fresheners or colognes. This aroma is made up of whiffs of emotions. It's these emotions that make me fall in love with the place, all over again, each time I am at the Arrivals or Departures.
What are they made up of?
Goodbyes. Said to the city - a home to expats, someone is always leaving behind people and places. Beginnings. Someone is always at the entry point, too- to make their dreams come true, to find a home in an alien land. Smiles, of grandparents visiting their grandkids during summer breaks.

Love. As children receive their parents or as parents welcome a child returning from the university, now a graduate. Heartbreaks, pointing towards relationships that didn't fall in place. Dreams, which make work trips worthwhile. Tears, hugs, sighs. Farewells, congratulations. I can promise you that the spectrum of emotions can leave one overwhelmed, spellbound - one just needs to observe closely.

Do I ever fear a relationship itch? No! Why? Because irrespective of the hour you are at the airport, the destination you are flying to or flying from, the colour of your passport, the air miles you earn, the low cost or luxury carrier you book yourself in - the emotions remain unchanged.

The next time you fly see if you can identify them, touch them. I promise, you will be besotted.

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