15 November 2023

This airport is special to me

Exactly 30 years back, I landed in Frankfurt airport – completely dazed and out of sorts after staying awake most of the night on a Lufthansa flight. That was my first international flight. This was my first international airport.

I did not understand the language. Nor could I follow the instructions. And the scale of operations were unnerving to say the least. I had started from Bombay airport the previous night. Most people today will not realize how small Bombay airport used to be those days. I doubt it handled even 100 flights every day then. Today, it handles 1000 daily.

My first reaction watching two airplanes take off within 30 seconds of each other in Frankfurt was that there must have been a big mistake. Surely, the next day there was going to be front page headlines about a flight accident. Except I noticed that the pattern continued. Plane after plane kept taking off and landing. I figured that was what the famed German precision was all about.

Later in life, this airport became my monthly calling. A quarter million Lufthansa miles from all those trips to Asia and India ensured that I knew every nook and corner of the terminals and the staff at the lounges and some stores in the airport.

Now that I think about it, I think this was Natasha’s first international airport too. Lufthansa used to fly to Kolkata those days and Natasha’s first trip to check out her grandparents in 1999 at the age of 18 months was thru this airport.

Posted November 15, 2023 by Rajib Roy in category "Vacations

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