Well it’s way past my bed time and I’m still wide awake waiting at the Arrivals at T2 or the new airport. In the good old days, the ride to Sahar generally ended like an entrance to hell making you feel glad you were flying away. But now, the moment you take the underpass your jaw begins to drop till it actually reaches the ground as you reach P6, the level for Arrivals. The smooth ride, the well lit, palm lined road makes you for a while wonder whether you are in Mumbai at all.
But reaching P6 is not easy for a first timer as there are no signs at all indicating where is what. Once you reach the parking bay, you have to intuitively guess where to go. Luckily we are in India only and there are plenty of people to ask though their directions are vaguely decipeherable with their vigorous handshakes and the simple declaration that you go left only or straight only.
So first timers remember to take the parking ramp up to P6 especially if parking is available because that is where passengers arrive. Do not follow the signage for Fleet Taxis because then you land up in P4 as we did and then you have to look around for someone to ask where the lift is to take you up.
Luckily the lifts are spacious and the luggage trolleys don’t have a life of their own and actually move the way you want them to move so the luggage piled high actually stays put without risk of teetering over while negotiating a bend.
The Meeters & Greeters area is spread over the three gates ABC but currently only C and B are in use. There are two ticket booths on either end so that you can actually wait inside the huge waiting area rather than outside with the thronging millions. Typically only one booth was working but since I didn’t want to go inside it was ok and spotting passengers didn’t seem so difficult.
The huge outdoor waiting area is huge with three kiosks for snacks and beverages ( a small Aquafina cost me Rs.30) and there were enough huge bins to collect waste. There were two huge water fountains with colours that changed every now and then , and made such roar that sufficiently drowns the ambient sound.
There are rows of backless benches and the whole complex looks clean, slick ,chic and comfortable.
Finally, Chattrapati Shivaji International Airport has become truly international.
A granny who always sees the humour in life and tries to do things differently. When others make cupcakes, this granny makes banana fritters. When she’s not busy chasing her grandchildren who love making her run around, she indulges in her passions of reading, writing, meeting friends and watching movies. And somewhere between all this she enjoys travelling and cooking!
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