Vantage point

Thursday, January 04, 2007

The Puneri Airline

Just returned from an utterly refreshing trip to Mahabaleshwar with my school friends. Most of us live outside Pune, so every time we return, we discover something new which is irritating as well as amusing. Of course, Puneri sign-boards, Puneri aversion towards displaying any business acumen, and curtness are all age-old qualities.

So while one such session of laughing over Pune, we came up with a great business idea. A business idea guaranteed to end in massive losses.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you - "Shree Gajanan Airways", the world's first Puneri airline. Needless to say, it will be a no-frills airline.

Firstly and very importantly, this airline will have no flights that leave in the afternoon. The staff needs its precious seista time. So if you need to catch a flight that leaves between 12 and 5 pm, you had better take your business elsewhere.

The check-in counter will have the following signs placed all over it -

"Krupaya khidki kinva aisle seat cha aagraha karu naye" (Please do not insist on a window or aisle seat)
"Boarding pass sambhalun theva. DhaandraTaasaarkha haravu nakaa. Tyachyashivaay vimaanaat daakhal hou diley jaanaar nahi." (Be careful not to loose your boarding pass like a clumsy oaf. You won't be allowed to enter the aircraft without it."

All such signs will of course end with "hukumavarun"(by order).

You walk in to the aircraft and there will be no stewardesses to greet you. You will look for your own seat, stow the luggage away, and notice that all the stewardesses are sitting at the back of the aircraft, chatting with each other and having a hot cuppa. As you will be sitting on your seat, a stewardess will walk up to you, and notice the overhead compartment's lid still being open. She will glare at the lid, then glare at you, then cast an omniglare. She will then walk to the front, take the microphone and say,

"Krupaya overhead compartment che jhaakan band karaa. Athvaa tumchyaach dokyavar saamaan padel. Tasey zaalyaas takraar karu naye." (Please close the lids of all the overhead compartments. Or else the luggage will fall on your head. If that happens, don't complain).

After this, the stewardess will direct your attention to the terms and conditions, where the 23rd point will say "Please eat before you come for the flight".

"Tumhi sagley gharun khaunach aala asaal. Tyamuley khaayla pyayla kaahihi diley jaanar nahi. Paanicha tambya pudhe thevlela aahe. Tahaan laagli ki svataha uthun ghene." (All of you must have already eaten. So no refreshments will be served. A jug of water is kept in front. Help yourself to it when you are thirsty.)

This will be followed by the standard in-flight announcements, which will include the following lines -

"Potaachi patti avalaa. Na avalalyaas danda kela jayeel" (Fasten the seat belt, or face a fine)
"Jar vimaanaat kami dabavachi parishtiti nirmaan zaali tar oxygen mask khaali yetil. Aadhi svatahacha mask ghalava. DeeD shaNyasarkha dusryanchi madat karu naye." (If the pressure in the aircraft drops, then the oxygen masks will drop down. Wear your mask first. Don't be a smart ass and try to help others.")

You get the general idea.