I was in Baroda airport waiting for the boarding announcement for Jet Airways flight to Mumbai. I was having a economy class boarding pass as expected and deserved. I was bit worried and upset about leaving my family alone at Baroda and going for 1 month but I had accepted the fact. Then one gentleman announced that boarding started. I took my time to go and stand in the queue as there is nothing I had to do reaching aircraft early except tightening my seat belt. When I saw there were less than 20 people standing in the queue, I went and stood behind the last person who was a middle-aged man. He turned back and looked at me as if I am trying to pickpocket.. I maintained a comfortable gap to make him feel comfortable. Queue was moving fast enough and within a minute my turn came. The gentleman with the bar code reader looked at me and smiled. I smiled too showing my all 32 with lots of gap in between. He said “Sir, your seat has been upgraded. It is not 12F it is 3A.” after a pause “3 Alpha” he emphasized. I understood it but could not digest it. So I was not very happy. Then he stroke off the seat number on my boarding pass and wrote 3A. I thanked him and moved ahead. Then got into the transit bus and finally entered aircraft. Everybody who verified the boarding pass whispered “Upgraded” to their colleagues. Once I reached my seat number, which was a business class seat, wide enough to fit two of my size, carefully placed my hand baggage in the cabin and sat in my seat number 3A. It was comfortable. Then one air-hostess came near me and offered a hot towel. I used that although I am not used to that. Then as soon as I cleaned my face, she came again and offered me a glass of lime juice. Then I confirmed myself that it is really upgraded. It’s not that I was dying to sit on a business class seat but I was happy. Then took out my cell phone from my pocket and sent a text message to Monika “Upgraded to Business Class” and then switched off my phone being a responsible traveller. Then relaxed on the comfortable seat and took the magazine out of the seat pocket. Started reading the magazine and sipping the lime juice.
After 5 minutes I found almost all the seats were full. Then one gentleman wearing one apron of ground staff came and stood near my seat. There was another passenger standing just next to him. Then ground staff requested me to show my boarding pass. I showed that promptly. Then he said “Your seat is 12F” and gave me a look which I was not so pleasant. I explained “But the person who verified the boarding pass said it is upgraded to 3A.”. He spoke in his ‘walky talky’ to somebody “Which seat is upgraded to 3A?”. He got some response and then he said “Then who said to the passenger of 12F that his seat is upgraded?” and hung up. He told me “No Sir, your seat is not upgraded. Your seat number is 12F”. He meant, get up and go to 12F. This I digested immediately and got acidity too. Felt very uncomfortable, felt as if I was seating in another person’s seat which I do not deserve, felt as if I was cheating somebody but not sure why I was feeling all these. I did not do anything wrong but I was embarrassed. I could have shared my frustration to the ground staff and blamed them for their mistake etc. But I thought it is of no use. Then immediately got up, took my hand bag and moved to 12F. Placed my bag there and sat in my seat. Did not send another message to Monika stating that it was downgraded.
I was feeling unhappy, embarrassed and angry. I was seating in my designated location which I knew while getting the boarding pass. If no upgrade would have happened then I would have felt nothing unusual. If I would have been the real upgraded passenger, I would have felt happy. But now I am unhappy.
In our life there are many situations we get upgraded to another state or stage of mind unexpectedly. We get over appreciation for something which we do not deserve. As long as we get these we are happy and satisfied but when somebody or some situation makes us realize what we deserve then we feel terribly sad. We feel as if, entire world has been taken away from us. We feel cheated and think this world is a difficult place to live. But truth is, we just came back to the state or stage we deserve. If upgrade would not have happened then we would not have felt bad about downgrade.
So, it is important to remain grounded always so that whether upgrade or downgrade does not affect our behavior or mental state so much that we feel very happy or very sad when changes occur.
– Stray Dog