Friday, March 23, 2007

Despise Spice

This morning we made our way to Hyderabad's domestic airport at 5:30AM. After a night out watching India's unfortunate Cricket World Cup loss to Sri Lanka, we were running a bit late, and asked our driver to speed a bit. Asking one to speed in the States means adventure; in India it's nearly asking for an accident. At 100 kph, we sped over curving roads, darting through red lights with a flicker of brights and a smatter of honks, braking only slightly to allow careening buses to rage past us. At 5:45 AM we arrived at the airport. With no bags to check, a guarantee from Spice authorities on the phone, and tickets in hand, we were sure we'd make the 6:10AM flight. Flights are notoriously late, lines are short, and without bags, we could, and literally were expecting, to do this in our sleep.

When we arrived at Hyderabad airport, we were met with the staunchest intransigence I've ever faced. Not only were SpiceJet employees unhelpful, their strict interpretation of rules and policy became entirely unreasonable. While we attempted to reason with them for minutes, as our flight time approached even nearer, we grew impatient with their meek rationale for why their 'closed system' would not issue us a boarding pass. The SpiceJet employees, a quibbling, mumbling cadre of red-clad, brain-dead automatons who were hired only for their desired ability to mindlessly repeat policy tag-lines, were perhaps most frustrating to encounter at 5:45AM. When reason fails to make an impression, braun may prove equally ineffective, but far more enjoyable a method to vent frustration. At one point I shredded a paper, widened my eyes, slammed my hand down on the counter yelling through the still falling confetti of SpiceJet paraphanelia at a camel-eyed supervisor who stared back with indifference.

After forcibly missing our flight, exiting the airport in a frustrated 6AM huff, our only consolation was that SpiceJet would offer us a ticket on the next available flight, tomorrow morning, same time, same place, same automatons. So tomorrow we embark on a 10-hour stint to Jaipur. Faced with sunk cost, the allure of a day in Rajasthan only slightly outweighs the unenjoyment I've come to expect from SpiceJet that's sure to again be our morning rooster.

1 comment:

Valerie Rozycki said...

Commenting on quite an old post, but all I can say is I relate! I spent 8 hours in the Delhi airport once when the SpiceJet plane was having maintenance done. The maintenance was not the was that the SpiceJet employees had a shift change in the middle of the delayed flight and the new crew and pilot refused to come in until their shift was supposed to start a few hours later. Coincidentally, I had a viral fever kicking in that day. Oh, India. And yet, we are drawn to it. :)