Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Plane & Simple

Last week, 646 aircrafts landed/took-off from Mumbai International Airport in 24 hours. It’s a high, considering that only 4 months back, the air traffic movement hovered around 600. For India, it’s a big enough figure to go trumpet around. But put Mumbai Airport alongside international biggies like Heathrow or Hartsfield Atlanta & the comparisons turn embarrassing !

Passenger air traffic in India is so low that civil aviation minister Mr. Praful Patel has made it his favourite “putting in perspective” line. On more than one acassions, he has been heard saying. “Our country of 1.1 billion (yes ! !) has only 10 million flyers. If 100 million flew each year, we would need 2000 aircrafts.” All our commercial airlines together have a fleet of arount 270 aircrafts. In comparison, US’ one Airline – Southwest Airlines has a fleet of 468 birds ! !

Moving on – in terms of area, if the world’s biggest airports are as large as a cricket ground, Mumbai Airport would be used to play Pool ! !
In the top slot, by far, is the King Khalid International Airport, Riyadh – it covers 81 square miles. Denver International Airport at 53 sq. miles follows. Mumbai Airport measures 2.81 sq. miles – slums included. Remove the encroachments, and we are left with just 1.5 sq. miles of operational area.

Astonished ? Surprised ? Here’s more.

As for passenger traffic, Mumbai handled 17.4 million passengers from January to October. Hartsfield-Jackson, Atlanta handled 24.01 million only in 4 months from January 2006.

As we are comparing airport statistics and not the number of passengers who land/take-off from a city, it should be mentioned that Mumbai airport’s statistics speak for the city. Mumbai is perhaps the only big city – big in terms of population – that manages with 1 airport. New York has 3 – Kennedy, La Guardia & Newark. London beats it with 5 – Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, London City & Luton. Even the space starved Tokyo has Haneda & Narita.

We sure have a long way to fly before we can get anywhere near.

Thought for the Day

On a date, the guy always wonders whether he’ll get lucky that night. The girl already knows.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

55 X 2 =

hey, i have another 55 word story done.
you can read it on www.55-words.blogspot.com

look for my name - "Mihir Kamdar" & click on it.

Also read the two stories under the name "R.E.F.L.E.C.T.I.O.N.S" ...
Not mine, but definitely a good (maybe better) read ..

so, read away....

My Dad, Superman .

"My Daddy Strongest", went an ad slogan a few years back. It had a cute little girl mouthing those words.

Like that girl, my dad is a has been & is a role model and much more for me.
He is everything i want to be. he is my Superman.

I have grown up seeing my dad work very hard throughout his life.
He does not like to rest on weekends. He remains physically active, much to the ire of my mom who prefers to rest. Dad's constantly doing something - repairing stuff, tinkering with various items in the house, dusting, or just plain moving around (he cant sit still ! ! )

He's almost 49 now. And NOW he gets tired. Often. He has some age related problems - cholestrol, Blood Pressure etc.
He still pulls my mom for weekend drives & mall-hopping stints, but returns home extremely tired & often with a headache.

He even sleeps on weekend afternoons sometimes (an unheard of thing in my house. i've taken up that habit of not sleeping in the afternoons).

All this is normal - YES - with age. But I just can't accept my Superman getting old.
I want him to be the same as earlier. It pains me to see him grow old, tired & down with any sort of ailment.

As a son, i don't want this to happen.

The trend will soon reverse (or, is in the process of reversing gradually) - it was him taking care of me, nurturing me. Now, i ll have to take up that role.

I hope i can emulate him in all that he did
Many sons want to go beyond what their father was, what their father achieved.
I don't. Apart from the fact that it's very difficult to - I always want to live in his shadow.

After all, it's the shadow of SUPERMAN ! !

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