Thursday, February 18, 2010

Loquacious Companion

I am awake at 2.00AM in the morning, observing the peacefull city with very little clue about what to do and why i woke up. The city looks peaceful and with summer starting, nights are unusually hot.

Anyway thought of sharing few things that happened during a train journey that managed to catch my attention. Dont expect something spicy, in the train i travel things like that rarely happen.

Anyway that day i had to travel in a three tier AC coach. As per my experience my thought is that the chance for people to interact with people in AC coach is pretty less when compared to the sleeper coaches, since most of them have something to keep themselves occupied. I had my own plans of completing a novel, which i am trying to do for a long long time. But few things happened that managed to grab my attention.

As usual, the coupe i was in was testosterone rich and didn't have any trace of any girl. The same state prevailed in the near by coupes too. Is that my luck or is that the state of the train, i have no clue. In my coupe, there was a old gy, some one from northern part of india for sure, a middle aged man who never bothred us, another guy who seemed more like a fresher, and the character in focus, whom i will call American return, as i am not aware of his name.

It all started when, TTE started checking the tickets. Our guy had the ticket in iPhone, and zoomed the document and kept it ready, which the TTE as expected refused to see and he had to pay Rs. 50 as fine. Our guy tried arguing with the TTE who remained silent and continued to fill the receipt. The reason he quoted was he is trying to save paper by not printing the ticket. Though most of the other people didn't try listening to his grievences, except for the old guy.

So our american return started in full swing, he blamed the Indian government for not making it easy to use their services. His lavish comments had a strong american accent and looked more like it was intentional. He could speak normally too, which became evident, when he started talking later. Looks like he was not happy with how railways was functioning. Though it had made so much of profit, still there was no escalators in railway station as a result of which most of the old people struggle a lot. The old guy turned out to be a railway judge and he was able to give him some explanation. Few points he made,

* Though Indian railways makes a lot of profit, there are a lot of other basic amenities to be fulfilled other than escalator.
* Looks like the newly installed escalator in Chennai Egmore seems to be creating more problems, than helping people.
* Along with the escalator, a person was employed to maintain it and help people. Also, the guys employed to take care of it lack knowledge about it, and they do struggle.
* Though at times, if some accidents are caused because of the pure negligence of the people, Railways does pay them money just for the reason that they are illiterate.

The talk continued and American return, stuck to his point. Though it was just two people who talked for a long time, there were a lot of silent observers including me. One point that i will accept with that American return guy is that, we Indians lack don't push ourselves to perfection. This is very much true, we rarely take steps to make things perfect and this get reflected in all levels.

One quality that i did note in that american return guy is that, he started the conversation with an argument and finally ended it in a good note and went upto the level of exchanging contact details with the old guy. Also should thank him for making the train journey a bit interesting. This is just a gist of what happened, as usual described in a bit of crude way.

As for the novel, i still at the same page i started with during the start of my journey.

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