Monday, July 7, 2014

My Stockholm Diary

We are in Stockholm (Sweden) on a family visit to be with our son Naresh and his family. I started along with my wife Vidya from Indira Gandhi Airport in Delhi on July 4 by FINNAIR flight in the morning and reached Arlanda (Stockholm)  via Helsinki Airport by the afternoon. It was our first trip outside India on a general/ordinary passport after my retirement after 35 years of diplomatic service. We had been traveling on diplomatic passports so far with all the privileges and immunities of a diplomat. Frankly, I was, at the back of my mind, alive to this change in status and somewhat worried of the general treatment and handling on the airports. But to my pleasant surprise, there was no difficulty. I found Indira Gandhi Airport better managed and maintained. The staff at the check - in counter, immigration and security were courteous and helpful as it shall be. Our son Naresh, who was visibly moved to meet us after about two years,  received us at the airport and brought us home. Our grand children, Pallavi and Arvind received us at home with lot of love and excitement. Our daughter-in-law Anju, a generous and considerate lady, was at work and joined us in the evening. I thought it would be a quite evening and we would be able to recover from the jet-lag but there was an instant party. Naresh ´s friends Inder and Nippi dropped in to welcome us. Nippi brought with him some good mutton and mince meat and cooked for us. It turned out be a sumptuous family dinner. Naresh has told us that most of our week ends, till August 16, are already booked for lunches and dinners with Naresh´s friends and our own old friends in Stockholm from days of my posting in the Indian Embassy from August 1991 to July, 1994.  We look forward to meet them and enjoy our visit to Sweden, a beautiful country. 

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