Sunday, April 30, 2006

Visiting Pakistan in Summer

It's been quite a while since i arrived in Pakistan, and summer started with my arrival. It has been between 30 and 40 degrees in the day, even sometimes surpassing that. First two weeks were taken away by the preparation for my brother's wedding. His flight back to Australia was scheduled two days after the wedding. He got sick on that day and had to delay his flight for one week. He then departed for Australia.

My departure date is tomorrow. A few days back i looked for my air ticket but found it nowhere. All the family searched for it but in vain. Then i declared to Gulf Airline that i have lost the ticket and want a reprint. They said they'll have to send a request to Frankfurt to block my old ticket. The request will then be redirected to Bahrain headquarter which will allow Lahore office to reprint the ticket. This can take one to two weeks. This means i'll miss my flight. Later, my mother suggested to query my brother in Australia. I asked him; he searched; and found the ticket in his belongings. He then dispatched the ticket through the fastest service, but it won't reach until Monday (my flight day) since Monday is holiday (Labor day) in Pakistan. btw, it's not a holiday in Australia. So i also had to delay my flight a week and now i'll be flying next Monday if nothing else goes wrong. I will be able to attend six weddings during my five week stay in Pakistan :)

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Flying to Pakistan with Gulf Air

I flew to Pakistan with Gulf Air last Thursday. It was a big plane from Frankfurt to Muscat and a smaller plane from Muscat to Lahore the following day. I was to have a 14 hours stay in Muscat for which i was to be provided with a hotel and visit visa for Muscat.

The plane left Frankfurt a little late. The crew visually demonstrated emergency exit points. It was raining at that time. The staff in the plane was very nice and polite. Announcements were made in Arabic, English and German. Seats were comfortable and blankets were provided for sleeping. Air conditioning was really good and i felt cold at times.

First stop was Bahrain: about a five hours journey. We were to drop and pick passengers and then fly to Muscat. After some time in Bahrain, the crew started to get paniced. They moved to and fro down the aisle and counted and recounted the passengers, requesting passengers to sit in their designated seats since they couldn't count for all the passengers and couldn't fly without doing it. After about a half hour delay, the plane departed from Bahrain and reached Muscat in an hour.