Monday, September 17, 2007

To Airlines.

Preeth mentions in his post on Bangalore how he likes to hang out in the Airlines Hotel parking lot but apparently some people think this is strange because its a parking lot. I happen to love Airlines for many different reasons but i have to disagree with anyone who calls it a parking lot. It is so much more than just a parking lot, it's an entire city, unknown to the rest of the world ... until now.

There's the restaurant of course and the lodge. Some people call it a hotel but really its a lodge. There's an ice cream shop and a play area for the kids [and grown people who think its cool to sit on tiny swings with bucket chairs and look all giant-like] and a book stand that turns into a bakery overnight and later into a fruit stand. Last time i checked it was back to being a book stand. There's also a beauty parlour and an STD booth but STDs are um easily attainable anywhere on the premises... especially in the lodge.

My favourite section in Airlines happens to be the astrologer booth. It is very odd looking with every inch of the wall covered in pictures of different Gods and conspicuous right in the middle a humongous picture of Mother Theresa! Photographer friendly Astrologer Swami for a sum of a hundred and one rupees will make very general assumptions about your life and then make up a bunch of nonsense about your future. Your job is to try not to giggle, nod and ask lots of questions.

The seating arrangement at the restaurant is divided into 4 main sections. The main area is under the trees. So yes, very shady. This is called 'Tivoli Garden' for some reason and was last seen on Channel V Panga where VJ Yudi or some other incredibly short dude [possibly the surma wearing boy from that Falguni Pathak video who later went on to become a veejay who later went on to become an actor who later went on to disappear from the face of the earth] dared an innocent person to eat other innocent person's idli. No one likes to sit here for fear of catching some deadly disease. A variety of fluids can be found on the tables ranging from sambhar and jelebi juice to bird dropping and used handwashing water. There's a small "water filter" at one end but no one uses it except to wash their hands. This is why the parking lot is a way more popular hangout.

The parking lot is pretty cool actually. You sit in your car and the assistant waiter will call the main waiter who depending on your luck that day will show up within 5 or 40 minutes to take your order. He will recite the entire menu upon request within 30 seconds and will do so as many times as you wish, sometimes even while you record him on your phone. There is no makeshift car table to put your food on unlike in Chalukya Hotel where they actually bring you a wooden plank to put in between the windows. Plus that would never work in Airlines. Most people keep their windows closed. The water and extra chutney/sambhar cups are kept on top of the car. If you happen to be sitting in the 'lowwers an dowwers' sections do not be alarmed if you see a hand coming out of the top of a heavily tinted window. They're not going to shoot you, they're just grabbing their chutney.

Other sections of the restaurant include the 'family and friends' section and the 'narcotic dealer/pimps and ho' section where many local politicians and thugs like to conduct business. Very interesting section this is however for your own personal safety I recommend you park in the family and friends section. Not to worry it has a good view of the other sections for your viewing pleasure.

If you happen to visit Airlines late in the evening you will be entertained by the lovely Tivoli night time band 'JustNim UlsoorLake'. The band is made up of the young assistant waiters who use various utensils to make a nameless but unique genre of music.

The assistant waiters also double up as messengers because the kabootars are busy crapping all over the tables. Say for example some lame boy wants to send a grammatically horrendous love note to you he will use the help of an assistant waiter who will even provide a pen [from behind his ear] and hotel stationary [paper napkins] for this very purpose.

The last and most important job of the assistant waiter is to catch the attention of the main waiters to make minor last minute changes to your dosa/coffee order - "boss one benne masale no oil, dry chutney no sambhar, coffee one by 2, sugar haakbedi, seperate aag tankodi". He will also bring [in one go] all the occupants of your car and your friends in the next car, water in glass tumblers without using a tray. This wonderful blend of drinking water + waiter finger juice + other mystery fluids is then used for hand washing right outside your windows. Do not ask for a finger bowl. Those do not exist in the city of airlines.

Rbr claims there are many more secret hidden sections at the back and one must trust Rbr. After all he has part ownership in airlines stalk stock.

Apart from the pimps and ho's, waiters and assistant waiters, college kids and families and lowwers and dowwers you will also see lots of foreigners, mostly in bright orange. They make up almost 40% of the lodge occupants.

And finally the man who controls this mad circus - the wonderful and talented Bahadur. You might know him from here.

So do visit Airlines Hotel the next time you're in Bangalore. After all it's all about the ambiance.


Bikerdude said...

Um yeah sitting in the car during the bird season is a good idea. Something very figgy and gooey fell plop in the middle of my rice bath the last time I went there. Tasted ok though :P

Anonymous said...

its back to "comments" huh?

TS said...

There is/was also a pub/disco called Egypt, where this guy called TS celebrated New Years with his beloved many many years ago.

Spunky Monkey said...

Ahh, I heart Bangalore, I HEART Bangalore.
Everything about the place is So heart-able.

Preeth said...

Don't ya tell anyone, but its also
where you can hassle free park your bike for hours, even on manic Saturday evenings.

shub said...

"JustNim UlsoorLake" eehahahahahaha! :D
Oh thanks for jogging memory about pen tucked behind ear!

Prototype no. 89 said...

that was a wonderful description of the city, I used to eat the awesome masala dosa after my swim at Bowring institute everyday one summer in late 90's. Still go there for the dosa's and cake fudge. I made many friends playing at the kids play ground right behind the parking lot, while my dad was busy ordering dosa's for us. Dont they get the side-door tray any more? those dosa's, sambhar and chutney are to die for. And hear that the lodge is like a brothel for MLA's. But never did she a woman who was selling out for sex there, but then again i never did go there after 8 pm! So Pri how far are from the City of Airlines again? Mwahahahaaaa!

TinTin said...

I also love bangalore. And have you heard of the photos of Veronica Dunce floating around? Maybe I am messing up the name. They look beautiful.

Renovatio said...

I'll write out a little screenplay for you.
(In bathroom of air india flight)

Door: Knock knock
Me: One sec
Door: Knock knock
Me: Hang on
Door: knoCK KNOCK
Me: Hang on damnit
Me: Oh hell.
Door opens, to standing man with hand over mouth, puke dribbling down


Pri said...

@ts: seriously? in airlines?

@anon: huh?

@tintin: who?

@renovatio: lovely story dude but wtf does it have to do with anything? airlines hotel isn't connected to any airlines or airplanes. ok? ok.