A Traveler’s High !


The say it is better to be busy, than to wonder what to do with your time. Blogging usually fills up the empty spaces of time for me. Life was riding on the super fast bullet train last few weeks. Hence the big gap between posts.
One of the reasons I love traveling is the sheer joy I find in meeting new people. Interaction with strangers gives me an adrenaline rush – similar to the one people get when they go for a Giants game or play Call of Duty on the PS3. And some times I get lucky.. Not only do I get to interact with strangers, I also get to interact with some special strangers – some who leave an impression.
Once at JFK, I was grabbing my cup of coffee, and noticed a bunch of people crowding around a handsome guy – it was George Clooney; people who know me, know how much I adore Clooney – but I did not feel like joining the crowd, so I turned around and assumed I was dreaming.
Last Thursday, when I was at Burbank Airport, killing time before boarding my flight, I noticed that a stranger next to me was playing with his iPad. (Why is playing bold and italic- coz that is all you can do with this device – as a friend puts it in simple words – iPad is the cute kid in the class, who doesn’t have to do much, he just has to be there)
I am a talker – so I leaned over to the guy sitting next to me, and asked if he was happy with his new gadget. He looked up, and said – Yes. It is brilliant. I giggled (yeah the cute kid in class image clouded my mind). I had to pry this guy more – so I said, “Ok, then convince me, such that when I reach home, the first thing I do is order this product. Sell it to me.”  
And he started.. “OK, first and foremost  – full disclosure – I work for Apple.” Oops! I laughed and so did he. Then he walked me through some of the applications, opened up some iPad specific websites, and also showed me some Apps that I did not know existed yet. Played a movie, a song and streamed from Hulu.com. Showed me his kids pictures and swooned me over with the awesome stuff this little device (which is fairly heavy) can do. I must admit – if I had $500 to spend on candy – I’d rather buy an iPad. 
We started talking about bundling news subscriptions with the gadget’s final price, and how over time, they will have to lower the prices to compete with the Kindles and the Nooks. He did tell me that Kindle’s battery is far superior to iPad’s. Being who I am, I started functionally testing the device, played with the interface and I must admit – I LIKED it.
Just to keep the conversation going, I asked, ” Did you get this device for testing purposes ?”, he replied, ” No, I actually bought it.”.  I laughed and replied, just because it is an Apple product? He said – ” No, not really. I head the Media Marketing teams at Apple, I must know its capability before I start asking people to convert their media formats to what is suitable for this device.”
I was dumbstruck – Gosh I wish I knew whose mind I was picking, before I asked my chain of sarcastic questions.  Thank God, it was time to board by then. I wished him good luck with the product and added, “make it a lil cheaper, and I think I will buy it.” We exchanged smiles and I left.

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