Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Greetings from Nairobi Airport

* image from Excess Baggage Charges and How to Avoid Them

Why is my life so full of excess luggage? As far back as I can remember, I seem to be flying from city to city, continent to continent dragging over-the-limit suitcases and hand carry on's bursting at the seams. Why do I always insist on packing a hippo and an elephant?
There are such profound questions and because the answers will be so philosophical and require quite some time and space to fully elaborate the explanations from a socio-political perspective, it is best to just put the questions out there and let them linger as giant question marks over our heads. But I can tell you how much I spent so far on excess luggage! While I was driving to Islamabad Airport at around midnight, I asked the Radio Cab driver whether he had any contacts at the Airport who could help me with my excess luggage which was around 20 kg as I was only allowed 30 KG on the Emirates flight from Islamabad to Dubai. He said the best thing to do was to ask the porters to help me out as they would speak to the officers at the counters and make a deal. So that is exactly what I did! The Radio Cab driver spoke to a couple of them before hand to explain what I wanted. So, while I was in that ridiculous 3-laned queue to actually get into the airport, I explained to him how much I thought I was in excess. Another porter came round and explained that he would try his best to get my things through with spending a minimal amount. He told me he would get it done in half the amount. So, I slipped in 10,000 rupees into my passport and the job was done. I also paid 3,000 rupees to the porter who arranged the whole deal. I guess I saved a lot of money as I would have had to pay at least double. But it was not over, I also spent quite a bit of dirhams for excess luggage for the Dubai to Monrovia leg on Kenya Airways where my travel allowance was 40 KG. I spent 350 dirhams for 7 kgs excess luggage for the checked-in luggage and guess what, 200 dirhams for 9 kgs excess for carry-on bags! This is a fortune to say the least. The Islamabad to Dubai flight on Emirates was full of screaming babies and I hardly got an hour's sleep. I mean you know it that the flight is full of desi's when you have a screeching symphony of bitterly crying and whining babies. Mujhe paida kyun kya??

The Dubai to Nairobi flight was around 4 hours long but because I was so tired, I hardly remember much of it. Both airports were a modern Internet-user's disappointment as the wi-fi was not working at either! At least I would be able to send e-mails. I think this e-mail will stay in my Outbox until I reach my apartment in Monrovia. I only have a 3 hour-stop in Nairobi and am probably going to spend it sipping coffee at the Java House cafe until they announce boarding. I would love to look around duty free and buy some Kenyan souvenir but my hand luggage is too heavy to drag around and they do not have those trolleys like they do at Dubai Airport. It's an almost 9-hour journey from Nairobi to Monrovia including the 1-hour stop in Accra. Fortunately, I will spend that stop over in the plane. Will call from Monrovia once I get there on Saturday at 3 PM. It will be 8 PM in Pakistan and Saira will be glued to the TV watching the latest Humsafar episode which I shall try to watch on YouTube on Sunday if the Internet speed permits it.

28.01.2012 - Nairobi Airport

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