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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Talk about a slow train journey.

Talk about a slow train journey.

There is only train plying from X to Y, I had no other choice. The line is a narrow gauge. It passed through farming country and it mainly carried farm produce, although passengers were often using it too. At every station on the way to be loaded and unloaded involving much shunting which took a lot of time. It took nearly four hours for a distance of 60 km.

I traveled once by that train. At first I could not believe that a train (in this age) could go so slowly. I had to put up with it. The train moved at a snail’s pace and one could almost get down and get back on it. I did not try it because it was not safe for such foolhardy experiments.

The train stopped to pick up baskets of eggs, hens, vegetables and other farm produce. Naturally, those who traveled by this wonderful train were farm workers moving either form one estate to another or going to town for a change. The train was not clean. The familiar sights of newspaper and magazines were not found at the stations. The stations on the way were manned by a skeleton staff, the station master and the pointsman doing all the duties. There are only two trains for the whole day and life to them is boring.

The journey was interesting for me and I got down whenever the train stopped to load or unload. There was no milling crowd of color I could see. There was not even a soft beverage to drink I could see. How they shunted the wagons. It was interesting to see the people who came to take their goods. There were all sorts of baskets, hampers and baggages. One of the loading was done, the train would start again and go on.

Since the train ran through farming country. I could see farms all the way, with their gardens, poultry, cattlesheds and granary. I couldn’t see any tall building. I could see a calf looking with fear at the streaming train: a half of naked boy goggling at the passing train and people engaged in the farming activities.

After a while, it all got boring. Anyway, it was good to relax from a hectic city life.

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