Tuesday, April 03, 2007

God's Eye View

"Nowhere can a person find greater solitude than alone in flight"

William Langewiesche, American author and journalist,
and former professional airplane pilot

Right this moment, I'm sitting in MAHE's* third floor computer resource room (AKA glorified cybercafe) where students can pay 10 Rupees per hour to access the world wide web.

Honestly, is there no end to MAHE's cheapness and dirty penny-pinching, money-grabbing ways? After sucking us of big-ass wads of cash for tuition fees, the scums still have the cheek to charge me for my right to blog crap on the internet pursue the holiest and most revered of medical knowledge.

Somewhere over Selangor or Perak (or possibly even Vietnam, considering my geographical know-whats).

Anyway, this entry will not be particularly wordy (10 Rupees/hour!) or I'd be penning a gazillion paragraphs on how-much-I-loathe-traveling-and-how-completely-my-butt-disagrees-with-crappy-coach-seats.

Some ships (Sorry, I can't resist; I'm simply too lame to pass this up).

Instead, here's a short summary of the arduous, buttocks-crushing journey, planned by one of my excellent batchmates that allowed me to traverse the Indian Ocean (twice) for the price of only about RM 1000. Come to think of it, I still haven't found out who exactly it was who planned this;

  • 4 hour flight from KLIA to Chennai (formerly Madras)
  • 1 hour flight from Chennai to Bangalore.
  • 1 hour flight from Bangalore to Mangalore.
  • 2 hour car ride from Mangalore to Manipal

Taking all the miscellaneous waiting hours we clocked, the whole circus lasted a whopping 14 hours, from 6 am to 8 pm. My derriere felt more like a slab of Salisbury steak than the healthy piece of 20-year-old ass it suppose to be.

What's that?

On the flight from KLIA to Chennai, I was privileged with a window seat. I've flown a fair bit of times but I've never once been seated by the window, on a flight in daylight (with superb visibility, no less), and with a camera in my hand.

And since I was denied of any conversational companionship, I practically photographed the sky every mile of the way. I ended up with half a gigabyte of pictures in total. I even managed to catch one with a plane zipping along in the opposite direction;

It's a plane!

Okay, I'll grant you that it looked more like an albino sea cow than any sky-worthy craft shot from this distance. Give me a break, I'm new at this photography thing.

Somewhere between heaven and beyond that.

About mid-flight, the plane flew across a patch of sky so clear and cloudless that one can make out exactly where earth's edge gives way to space. I don't know how many passengers on my flight saw that, but I know many have missed it, trapped in troubled slumber and plagued by thoughts of leaving for hell India again.

I'm felt less than small. My problems, my worries, my fears, my pain - all of them amounted to nothing in the massive face of creation and the beauty of a silver lining that stretches forever on and on. There's something poetic in that, and I can only hope that it's equally prophetic.

*cough*

Bear with me, I'm sickeningly life-loving after watching American Beauty a couple months ago.

But anyone can see the beauty of these, right?

The eastern coast of the giant that is India.

Miles above the countryside of Chennai.

The red lands of India's west between Bangalore and Mangalore.

For the first time in my life, I alighted a small propeller-driven plane for my flight from Chennai to Bangalore and from Bangalore to Mangalore. Theme park thrill rides are going to feel pretty tame to me now. In fact, this was the first time I witnessed someone actually puking into one of those quaint paper bags the airline folks have thoughtfully provided for such eventualities but unfortunately, I didn't manage to get my camera out quick enough to snap a picture of the spewing girl.

As you can see in the snapshot above, the part of India where Manipal is located has a semi-desert clime. For the benefit of your education (if you aren't already informed), India has two seasons; monsoon and not-monsoon. During the months of not-monsoon, the sky would almost always be spotlessly cloud-free. One can see nothing heavenward but an infinity of blue skies stretching away in every direction.

The first time I saw it, it completely smacked the breath out of me. The second time around, it still packs a pretty wallop.

Silver linings and blue skies ahead - this might just be a great year yet.

Ps: The above pictures (and more) are all available in bigger-than-wallpaper-size format minus the ultra-cool ugly label of this blog's URL. Let me know and leave your e-mail address here if you want any or all of them.


To heaven and back again,
k0k s3n w4i


*MAHE: Multitude of Ass Humping Eff-ers.

8 comments:

meifong said...

hey kok, nice journey back to india.. it's like amazing race!!! haha.. jz that there isn't rush hour to get to a certain place...

hmmm... american beauty!! yes! that super boring movie!!! and it scares me too!!! seriously. sister suggested an oscar winning movie to me. it's called persuit of happiness. and till now, i have not watched it . not very eager though since American Beauty is an oscar winning movie too and i didn't enjoy that movie so much.

u can actually detect that plane! it's so small!!! it looks like just any other clouds surrounding it!

i've never tried flying jet airways.. it has been MAS all the time because i've got the enrich card. but jet airways are suppose to be expensive right? and i always opt for window seat! never never middle seat! or next to window seat. i hate it when i can't look out to see the sky!

anywayz, how's 2nd year? fun huh?

k0k s3n w4i said...

@meifong

American Beauty is one of the best movies ever shot! Maybe I watched it at the right mood and time, and it sorta got into my head for a bit.

Pursuit of Happyness is definitely a 9/10 or 10/10 sort of movie. And that, for a very special reason to me. See if I can find the time to review it later, haha.

The plane was honestly pretty easy to spot - it was moving damn fast in the opposite direction. And we all know that clouds don't zoom around at that speed.

The workload is much heavier in 2nd year, though the subjects seems to be easier (I can't really tell this early into the semester). Microbiology seems promising tho'...

sXydeViL said...

looks like your precious chunk of huge "steak" went through alot of agony...

but i bet my life that it wouldnt beat my experience sitting in an absolutely low class jeep bumping my way along the mountain roads FOR FREAKIN 15 hours! or reverberating in the train for 21 hrs... =P (hahaha, a lil bit of sumtin from india trip) SUX!

k0k s3n w4i said...

@susu

About your bumping and reverberating butt experience, I would have you know that back now in Malaysia, OSIM is currently marketing this slimming stool that does all that - for quite a sum of $$$.

Bet your ass's all toned and sculpted now :p

meifong said...

gah. i just watched half of persuit of happiness and it's not so attractive.. i haf no idea why. i think i'm not for oscar movies.

heavy workload but easier subjects?
can't seem to link both together. they usually goes in line with each other. second year is tough for me =(

hmmmm..so u got ur net connection? by the way, are u going to goa this friday?

Mischique said...

Oh only a 1000 bucks? That's pretty cheap. What airline did you use? Man..14 hrs just to get to India? -_-'

k0k s3n w4i said...

meifong

That's a shame, really. It's the first movie to make me cry in happiness.

It's easier to understand the stuff in second year, i think, but the lecturers seem to be heaping work on us like crazy.

I decided not to go.

mischique

Jet Airways, i think. 14 hours of butt-awful suffering just to save-a-buck. We're real skinflints.

sXydeViL said...

LOLZ! u are a sucky and crappy c0ck! =P