Train journeys

Train journey brings back lots of old memories. Those summer vacations when we travelled 60 hours from varanasi to palakkad via chennai. Trip that would start with excitement of having frooti or limca, filled with fun playing cards, roaming around the train compartment, jumping from one berth to another, lying down and reading comics to magazines to novels. We would get tired by the end of second day due to terrible heat, again to be filled with joy of reaching our hometown as we cross the walayar border. I was always amazed how the breeze could change so abruptly as we enter kerala.

Then there are innumerable trips from trivandrum to trichur or palakkad during college days.  Those were times of getting concession forms from college, rushing to railway reservation counter the day ticket booking opens especially onam and Christmas. And there were occasions when there would be flash strikes or hartals that would give unexpected long weekends. Finishing classes, sometimes bunking them, rushing to the station and wriggling in the crowd to get into the unreserved coaches.

There were evenings spent looking at reservation charts trying to find f21 to f25 near our seats. Walking on the platform searching for batch mates. Few of the trips were spent talking almost past midnight disturbing fellow travellers.

Then came a time of travelling alone spending most of the time on the upper berth sleeping, barely interacting with anybody else.

Most recent ones are similar to the very first ones. Not so long. Neither so much fun. But understanding the role my dad used to play in those. Booking tickets, packing, ensuring that we don't miss the train, carrying the most luggage, making sure they are safe at night etc.

Today I am traveling alone. Feeling nostalgic. Everybody around enjoying in all those ways as I mentioned earlier. I watch them with envy yet smile deep within remembering all those good days.

Bon voyage


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