The MIG Love Chase

10:45 PM

"Dad,isn't this plane wonderful",I sneaked peak in with my eyes wide open into the small hole,the kind of which forms with the space between the two doors of a hangar.

"That's a restricted area,stay away" said my Dad.

Why are areas which are restricted always so tempting.But the fact is,it is.I was small,small enough that my dad carried me into his shoulder while I still had my eyes on the hangar.There were more planes,but the officer was more interested in explaining operations and radar and stuffs which may  require some high end intelligence or may be I was just small enough to grasp it.There were planes,but that was a beauty....

  Ever since that day,planes were my fancy.Not the ones which are AIR INDIA,OR AIR ASIA but the sleek military ones.I admire the big ones too,but the speed and the design and everything else combined is a combination which is superb.And till date I never heard anyone say "I hate MIG's".It's tough world out there,very tough out there,but at one age,you really do not care.It's kind of fancy you have in your eyes,be it everything.Be it Engineering,be it being a Doctor,be it being in Army,be it whatever,we have usually a very vague idea of how things goes inside.

  Admittedly,I have a crush on planes and I seem to never get over it even when I grew up.Even now,I love them for reasons I do not know.Though my dream was shattered when My brother mocked me "You are short of height" way back in 2001.Engineering was a very obvious choice.

 I still do not know why I chose engineering at that time which I did because most others did and also because I wasn't aware of any other option.I didn't know what I was supposed to do when I will be out of my college.For those who choose to be Doctors,it's not only about treating patients,you have to be updated about what recent medicines have come in and every time.For Defence personal aspirants,its not only about having the benefits of govt service,there is a lot of hard work too.It's sad that many a times this vague idea leads us to a wrong career choice,which is slowly improving with many people taking more risks in terms of career.

 One thing lead to another and I landed up being a Software Engineer.I loved it for my salary but at the same time hated it for the boring work I used to do.It had its pros and cons,like every other job.I moved to Bangalore in search of my peace of mind,and decided to just appear for an Airforce exam,without knowing what the paper would be on.I didn't even know if I would qualify for the age factor,because I wasn't too young to fly.Well the age you can appear in the exam is 23 for flying.So I did some research and found that Technical branches in Airforce has the last qualifying age as 28.But that was technical, I was a techie and I end up being a techie didn't sound too promising but worth a try.Because at least you get to see planes.Another reason was "Army takes till 25 and navy in the same ranges",so I had no other option at one point of time.And Airforce as a matter of fact,does take married women as intake,so that was an added bonus.

 I still remember,I went to Yehelanka Airbase,and I had no clue what I was going to do.As in unfortunately it was a last moment decision and I didn't get time to screen papers or even have a feel of it.I went inside the campus,as rest of us.We were sitting on a desk,and the exam time was rescheduled.I could clearly see many of the people revising notes or going through books,and grasp everything they could at the last moment.There was this guy,who came up to and said "Airforce?" and I hate the conversation which is "Me Aiforce,You Airforce" ,I said "Yes,because I think that's an Airforce exam we have here".

 Well,the conversation didn't turn out to be as snoopy as I thought it would be,and he seemed a pretty decent guy.We talked about his preparation ,obviously not mine,because I wasn't prepared.He was confident enough that he would clear because he somewhat seemed focused on Airforce.And I think he did because the answers were correct,but I was never in touch with him really.Now how do you react to questions in examination which you might have had heard in class XI,probably on Physics or Chemistry.You would hate it if you are out of touch for like 7-8 years,and you would know that there is certainly an answer,because its an objective question paper but you would never know which one.And I had this confusing "Such an easy paper,and I don't know the answer" expression for most of the questions.I don't remember what I did,probably ticked all B's then C's then A's then D's whichever was visually good looking option to me.

 I came out,and this guy said "Such an easy paper","Yeah it was".No doubt.I would've scored 100% if I was just out of school or maybe even out of college.I thought of saying "Dude,great for you" but then I did say "Yeah it was".Now some people start discussing answers and that's weird.He started discussing answers in the crowded Airforce Bus.He realised soon enough that I wasn't either interested or my exam didn't go well.So he gave me some gyan on don't worry and stuff and all of a sudden "Why don't you try movies,start with south Indian movies..blah blah?".Sometimes the conversation are so funny,that you really can't stop laughing.

 But sometimes its essential too.I can't deny the fact that the conversation was a relief from the Airforce paper,and obviously the bus ride.Yelahanka in some ways is not transport friendly.The Airforce bus left us at the gate,and we were supposed to take a public transport which wasn't available at that time.And luckily this guy realised that I was new to Bangalore,he said why don't we go by a bus and you can get down and take another which might connect to your place.And in a way I thought that was sweet.We didn't exchange numbers,we didn't talk or we didn't mail or nothing of that sort.But sometimes you meet people who are just there for you,at the right moment,at the right place,at the right time.Perfect!

So you think I lost..

But the game begins.I flew a microlight next year with a Captain as a co pilot on a TIF flight,and took plane all the way back.I appeared for Airforce exam again and this time I went to SSB Mysore,stayed for 6 days,had fun with the gals.And that was my best decision ever.I didn't get selected,but I do not regret it.It changed me in ways I cannot express.Read my next story on the change and the whole SSB gala,till then stay tuned.

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  1. WOW Anki!!!

    Lucky you... must have felt gr8

  2. I have a crush on planes and I seem to never get over it even when I grew up....Same here Ankita.Even, I am an Air Traffic Controller and at my work place, I usually engage with planes and more planes.They are passenger jets, military cargo planes and some time fighters also. But not only at the job, at home, on the road, everywhere I do admire those metallic birds in the sky. Sometimes my wife also expresses her surprise about this fascination. First time,I saw a plane on the ground in 2002 from a train passing adjacent to IGI Airport. After that, I saw them many times while traveling from Delhi to Gurgaon. In 2005, I got a job at Delhi Airport and it was the first experience of flying in the sky and felt them from inside.Left that job next year. 2 years later, in 2008, I again joined at Delhi Airport as an Air Traffic Controller. 4 years on and my love for those planes are still growing.

  3. Very nice ! Just chanced upon your blog. I agree with you completely on the sheer wastage of good people when people take up careers with vague ideas, but back then there werent too much of information.

  4. @Ruchita:Yes ruchita,I felt was an altogether different experience :)

  5. @Avanish:Crazy these planes are.Great that your fascination is where your job is.We all actually love planes,I mean when I sit on plane,I never sleep..I rush to the counter and always request for a window one.Its so amazing,yeah there is a stretch from Delhi to Gurgaon from where its so clearly visible the take off and stuff.I used to stand there and watch them few years back!what a pleasure.

  6. @Ranita:Thanks Ranita,glad you dropped by and read my long long story!

  7. @Moonstone:I know,that has happened with most of us.Between loved your paintings on your blog,try for exhibitions,Bangalore is too good for creative people.What's your name?


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