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On The Rails

I think I have never had an experience like this before. NEVER have I traveled without a reservation…. YES this was my first experience (and definitely the last one too) Oh my! Whenever Seema is around, there is something that’ll happen for sure… Only that it was something GOOD this time….a little brat she is [a good one though:) ], is known for all the mischief's possible…

For me, am used to planning things well in advance, be it, out for a movie or a trip back home. Everything has to be organized (coz dad gets wild otherwise, hehehe!). So, I had all planned and set ready for me to go home this week. I even swapped shifts with a friend so that I can leave office by 9:30 & catch the train at 11.

Late that evening Seema decided to visit her sister in Chennai…as usual a last min decision! We couldn’t get tickets even through Tatkal. So we decided to take an open ticket for her and share my seat. Some how, we managed to do this and walked towards platform# 4 to board the train. We had been starving since that morning, so we picked up some fruits and water for dinner….We thought, we could now relax and find a way out or even share the berth and sleep. Anyways it was time to relax and wait for a wonderful weekend at home….

There was our train ready to leave in another 45 minutes, BUT OOOOPPPSS! I panicked at the sight of it …… don't know how to explain…I think I can say the train looked a victim of a recent fire accident…..TRUST ME!, am not exaggerating… it really was….was full of scars as if it was burnt…… I felt butterflies in my stomach…."Should we travel in this? Isn't this neighborhood a bit shaky?” I started feeling very insecure and found the same expression on my friends face…..the train was smelling so bad that we couldn’t even sit there for 10 mins… .. We looked at the watch and we had 30 mins to go….

There was Seema with her usual last min idea, “Shall we try with the other train that leaves by 11:45??” (that’s the train we usually board) sounded a better suggestion” OK, whatever floats your boat." said I. We then grabbed our things and started walking towards platform#5, with some hope…the train had come in unusually early so we managed to speak to the TC and convince him for the seats (had to exaggerate a little too much , but did get our job done somehow) he said he will help, BUT.. he also said that I cannot travel with my confirmed ticket as it wasn’t valid here……

It was already 11:20 and the train leaves at 11:45…so leaving Seema with the TC for a seat, I walked towards the reservation counter to cancel my ticket and to get an open ticket…Half way through I realized I didn’t carry my ticket with me…it was in the bag that was with Seema…I had to run here and there and finally changed the tickets and realised there was just 5 mins for the train to leave…

I rushed to the train and found Seema in the TC’s seat. I was so damn tired and hungry; I was starving since that morning…We wolfed down the fruits as the train moved slowly out of the station… We had to sit there for nearly two hours before we got a berth for ourselves… it was nearly 2:30 in the morning when we actually went to sleep…

By 6 in the morning, I heard people talking around and had to wake up…Seema was still sleeping then… but not for long…A lady in the lower berth gave her a ‘PAT’ and said “Wake up!!, I need to sit”…hahahah!!!!! Should have seen how irritated she was … had it been someone she had known, am sure that person would have been dead meat…

Anyways we managed to be patient and reach home with a story for the weekend… My dear friend didn’t have tickets to come back either, that’s a different story altogether!

Contributing Story Teller :
Padma has shared her personal experience [email protected]

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