The One about the Trip

“One Sleeper Class Ticket to Salem Please” I managed to yell over the counter. The guy behind the counter didn’t even bother to look up. He pushed the ticket through the small gap and was already typing the next ticket out by the time I turned around. I liked to plan my journey well ahead and with the Online Ticket reservation system, I used to book tickets well before the actual date of travel. This meant no long queues in the railway station. No pleading with TTE’s. Today everything was different, this was not planned, that meant no reserved tickets and doing everything else I detested.
I managed to pull myself out from the long queue and saw that I had less than one minute to reach the platform. I ran to the overcrowded platform. According to the Information Board the Superfast Express was supposed to arrive at 2.00 PM, and here I was waiting for it at 2.30 Pm. Half an Hour Later the train slowly pulled into the station there was not an inch of space in the General Compartment. Plan B: A small adjustment with the TTE and I did manage to get a Reserved ticket in the Sleeper Class Coach. (The Power of Money).
Again, after months of travelling in the AC Coaches, the transition to the sleeper class coach did take some time. The noise, everything kept moving one way or the other, the people, the garbage, the emergency window, the dangling alarm chain. Garbage was strewn all around the seat, people kept chewing betel leaves and spitting over the windows. I wanted to cry out; I held on to my bag and wanted to be somewhere else for the whole time. I tried to keep myself occupied by thinking about the reasons that I had taken up the trip.
It was my roommate’s engagement. Well it was not just an Engagement. It took him twenty eight long years to get a Girl friend so this was something which we could not afford to miss. We had not got our tickets confirmed for the journey to Coimbatore so we were not sure if we should be booking our return tickets. Six of us did make it and by the time we reached the engagement hall all the formalities were done with. We managed to down some beers, eat some food and talk and laugh about all the old times. We did manage to squeeze some time and visit our old college, nothing much had changed. Images of First Year Hostel, Friends, Ragging, Sports, First of many loves, Fights, Outings kept flashing.
And for a Superfast train we covered 200 Km’s in Four hours. Well I did feel a lot better thinking about all the good times, in fact made me feel so good that for the first time I didn’t mind the overcrowded coach, dirty seats, and the creaking berths.






One response to “The One about the Trip”

  1. HaRy!! Avatar

    Common da… unreserved compartment does'nt get better than this, i sat on the upper berth with 3 retarded drunk guys, how stupid do you think it is!..yu either book in advance or spell yur doom! cya around…how yu doing lately!

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