With so many things to be packed and so less time, it was expected to be a hefty schedule! So many clothes, food and what not! Since it was going to be my first trip to the US, I didn’t quite know what to put in and what to leave out. Anyways, after toiling hard for many days, 70 kilos of ‘stuff’ was packed into three bags and I was set to go!
I had a flight with Etihad Airways (the official airline of UAE) on 02 March (One might ask the question that why did I not take Air India or Jet Airways? Well, these are 3-star while Etihad was 4, so I guess it was a safe bet!). The flight was on time and I bid India good-bye at around 11:30 PM IST. I was sitting with a gentleman from Amsterdam and since he was a globe-trotter and a fun-loving guy, we had a very interesting conversation. And yes, being from the drug capital of the world, he increased my knowledge about certain* things!! By the way, it was a wonderful flight with superb food and beverage** but a rather cold hospitality (not unexpected from a new airline!). We were right on time and landed at Abu-Dhabi at 11:30 PM (UAE time).
The airport was a beautiful sight with marvelous architecture. My next flight was in 2:30 hrs, so I went window shopping in the duty-free zone at the airport. I found out first hand that all that glitters in Abu-Dhabi is really really expensive. With all the ‘most-famous’ brands at disposal, it was a feeling that I had never experienced! Then… we boarded the next flight to John F. Kennedy Airport, NEW YORK at 2:00 AM (UAE time).