We celebrated the baby’s 28 with usual aplomb in the forenoon ,the core act of which was christening him.We uttered his name into his ears by taking turn and it was a satiating and edifying experience.The function was marked by ethnic eats being partaken of in traditional Mallu gear .Sree went to office in the afternoon only .By the time he was back from office in the evening he had some mixed message to deliver .The news of brewing hurricane had been rife for a couple of days if not slightly more .
Hurricane Harvey had lashed the neighbouring state of Texas and along with the hurricane it dumbed monstrous quantises of water in the coastal city of Austin and elesewhere.TV screen had been beaming the large scale inundation videos of the city for sometime .The water had overflowed the streets in such a way that cars and other vehicles bobbed in and out in the flood waters .Laid back and savouring the invidious pleasures of horror tourism we spent much time in front of the TV and was always for some additional bouts of sinful glee masqueraded as sheer curiosity .I patronised some U tube Channels as well.
Along with Harvey news some tidings regarding yet another hurricane called Irma too had been in the air in the close wake of Harvey ‘s eruption ,passage ,landfall & unleashment of macabre power through human settlements of all descriptions such as cities ,small towns and rural upcountry .
But we were in for a rude shock with little breathing space to arrange a summary evacuation from our own home because Irma had set sail towards Florida and the Government had advised a split moment evacuation and Sree’s office had shut shop and a work from home he had been conceded in the ensuing week . We were ushered into a panic spell virtually un cued and it held us in its vortex for one whole day . We were in doubt as to where we should repair to.
The options weren’t aplenty and we were to make for some nearby destinations of Tampa ,Orlando where Sree had some close friends . But it was discounted right away because his friends hadn’t had any extra space in their living quarters to accommodate we five besides the the said places weren’t completely out of the predicted areas of hurricane Irma impact . To make matters worse tickets from all the airports in our close and not so close vicinity had been sold out .The shops nearby had run out of stocks of water and other essential commodities and the availability of gas too was on the cusp of a total dry up .So a stay back was unthinkable and the rest of the options shrank to one and the single of making it to Unnikkuttans place in Boston .Though it appeared up for easy grab especially when he rang us up to welcome us to Boston straight away some logistical reasons stood in the way .First we had to travel up to Atlanta which was to take some nine hours straight from Sarasota .Our distress would have been considerably absent if we hadn’t been making the trip with a baby of one month on board .Since we weren’t sure when to make our return journey a hotel stay Enroute to Boston appeared confounding courtesy sheer cost and certain wind fall inconveniences galore .We took our bag and baggage and started out in our car around 11o’clock at night and hit Anup’s place in Tampa past midnight .Anup and his wife lived in an unroomy apartment .We parked our car in their parking space and then Sree and Anup drove off in the latter’s car and turned up back after further one and half hours .In the small hours of next day we drove to Atlanta in our spacious rented vehicle and by that time we had largely overcome our initial trepidation to the point of enjoying the trip and I presume that yoga must have stood Suju and myself in good stead so as to enable us to take the unsavoury matters (predominantly imagined ) in our road and air stride.
Atlanta we were told that was the busiest airport in the world . Its awesome spread ,state of the art facilities , the sheer mind boggling frequency of take off and landings ,fleets of grounded air crafts parked visibly and those taxing at their majestic unhurried pace together did justice to the international reputation of the airport .It is the hub of Delta Airlines and hence their fleet stole the the show .
We travelled in the American Airlines and it was a largish plane and dusk had fallen by the time we flew for Philadelphia and it took hardly 1 ½ hours to touch down at Philadelphia airport and it was raining somewhat heavily when we reached the place .Night was yet to superannuate and the airport was by no means a poor cousin of the one we had left .The airport terminal testified to the superpower-hood of the USA in that it sported eat joints from across the world such as Mexican,Japanese,Thai,American,Peruvian,Chinese and it was a carnival of global gourmet going berserk .But the global cuisine pageant in America will most probably turn jittery when it is pitted against the Bacchanalian repertoire that even the humblest of wine kiosk stock up on . Besides all the brands marshalled from the planetary pool extremely regional products of Yankee land enjoy shelf space in healthy cosmopolitanism unmarred by the virus of racist malignity .Hard liquor apart Americans revel in elaborate beer festivals . I saw one such in progress in the terminal house and it is one of the rarest occasions the Americans break out of the shell of their cult of individualism fetish .
The founding philosophical twin egg heads of America Emerson and Thoreau believed that all human goodness emanated from the individual self and collective efforts like politics etc corrupted pristine ,congenital nature . So shun the American would collectivism in all its avatars but beer would set them free to rejoice in the orgy of its fizzy collectivism .Who is more beautiful ?American men or women? Assessment of beauty is always tilted in favour of cross -genderism . But I am at full tilt towards the American men .In Philadelphia I ran into a cross section of that tribe in that their facial features ,masculinity of their their deportment ,sartorial felicity ,agility of movements and over and above all their towering heights with a matching unflabby latitude would steal the hearts of even the staunchest misandrist  male .Our flight to Boston ran one and half hours late citing paucity of ground crew in Boston airport which in its turn was occasioned by inclement weather of chilly ,respiteletss shower &ceaseless storm winds .On board the in flight announcement system referred to turbulence Enroute to Boston and I braced up for it but it went off somewhat well .In the wee hours we deplaned at Boston ,collected our baggage ,ventured out of the foyer to be into Unnikkuttan’s car on the kerbside and he drove us his home.