Friday, December 16, 2011

The Journey to The Land of Dreams - Part2 JFK-ROC

Ok, so I landed at JFK well on time and that too from an Air India flight. Surprise eh! :) I was groggy as I'd not slept during the flight at all, but on seeing JFK mouth agape was not the word at all. And humongous would not do justice to the size of the airport! It spread over miles and miles with no end in sight. As I made my way through the queue to get my I-94 at the counter, I could not help but to gaze around the seemingly endless expanse of taxiways and runways.

People warned me that the queue would be so big that it would take me at least an hour, but I don't know if I got lucky and was out in 15-20 minutes. My connecting flight to Rochester was a Delta, so went and checked in at the counter nearby. I was informed that my flight would depart from Terminal-6. "Terminal-6? How many are there! Pat comes the answer:8" 8 Terminals! Whoa! I thought to myself. No wonder its this huge. Hailing from Chennai and having seen only a part of IGI, it was a city in itself to me.

To the most unexpected part of my 'planned' short layover in JFK. I was told that I would have to take the train to terminal 6. I felt being such a big airport, trains were ok. Asked around and made my way to the station. It looked like a normal metro type station. The train arrived in about 5 minutes. Looked like a normal metro from the outside. As it neared, something felt odd. Then it struck me. There was no driver operating it! There was a marshal nearby and I unabashedly asked him what it was. It was JFK's "AirTrain" which is automatically operated. I could not hide my surprise and the marshal went away laughing. I probably made his day by being naive about this thing. Anyways, I was in complete awe and boarded the train.

I reached Terminal 6 by 0830. My flight to Rochester was to leave at 1230. Freshened up, next step for a chennaiite, is coffee which really kick starts an average chennaiite's day. Looked around and saw the big green sign "Starbucks". I knew my stay in America would have many firsts to it but this was much sooner than expected. Got a coffee and as shocked I was by the size of the "Small" cup, sat down tiredly and savoured it. Quick call home to update I've reached safely and two rounds later, I was completely tired and took a quick nap in the lounge. Woke up and it was around 1130.

The waiting was draining and I had no clue as to how to pass time. Spent sometime gazing the take offs and landings. It was 12 and I just had a look at the display as there was an announcement, only to my utter disgust that my flight was cancelled due to inclement weather. Completely drained, went to the counter that announced re-bookings and got myself re-booked on the next flight which was to be at 1845. What a start to my time here. By then 'Katrina', a hurricane had come to the states and I tried listening to the minute by minute updates and tried to find whichever way to pass time.

6 harrowing hours later, the flight was announced and I got in. Never knew when the flight took off and till the time the pilot announced landing in Rochester an hour later, I had no clue as I fell into a deep dreamless sleep. Landing at Rochester was smooth, collected my baggage, hailed a taxi and asked him to take me to Best Western at Marketplace in Rochester, where I was booked.

Checked into the hotel, called home to inform I reached my to be home city for the near future. Took a very comforting hot shower and fell into a contented, deep sleep after the small ordeal at JFK. I finally had arrived in the land of dreams. RIT here I come! was what I cried out in the room.

P. S: If you tell me you think this particular entry is boring, I'd be inclined to agree with you. But hey, its my blog and I chose to say this :) But I promise more interesting entries from now as I find my feet in the so called "Land of Dreams". Until then, Later!

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