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Monday, 24 November 2008

Train Journey by Janshatabdi

The General Compartment

I generally dislike train journey by general class, meaning the class other than the air conditioned class. No, I am not a snob. But I just cannot take the smell of sweat and toilet cocktailed in the same compartment. It’s absolutely nauseating. This time, i.e. yesterday, I had to, yes “had to” board the general class chair car of Janshatabdi for a 4-hour journey to a nearby town. Janshatabdi has a very good reputation all over India for being one of the most efficient and good train services in India. Ok, I took the decision to check it out, hoping, may be, it’s general class chair car will be a little improved and better than other trains.

It was scantily occupied and the 3 : 2 seating arrangement was looking good. It was cleaner than I expected. Most of the window seats were occupied and I got one too. Great.

A river Bridge on the way

The journey started. I was happy to get a window seat. It's late autumn and people would either not sweat or would sweat less. Even if some smelly cats do manage to board the train later, I had my windy window seat to give me fresh air from outside. The large window of the seat I occupied was to be shared by two rows of seats. A middle aged man was sitting on the window seat in front of me. Soon after the train started, the man seated in front of me, started sneezing once…twice...thrice…five times ... without covering his mouth. Then he spat through the window! How disgusting was that!!! And guess what? He didn’t even say ‘excuse me’ or even ‘sorry’. Argh…utterly disgusting! I tried to protect myself from all the bacteria that was let loose in the atmosphere by covering my face. I cursed myself for not listening to my 6th sense. It was shouting its heart out asking me to give in to the second thought I had before boarding the general compartment.
The Paddy Field and Flower beds

Well, after making me suffer like hell, he fell asleep. I thanked God for small mercies. Once the train started, I tried to enjoy the outside view and clicked a few landscapes that appealed to me.

Another passenger, a boy almost my age seemed to be a music lover. Well, by now, everyone in the compartment knew it. Some shrieking Hindi movie songs were playing in his all-in-one mobile phone and we had no choice but to hear it and bear it. Well, may be he was yet to be introduced to a thing called the ‘head-phone’; especially when travelling by a public mode of transport!

The train was scheduled at 6.20 in the morning. I was surprised at the "have seen all, done all," couple sitting behind. They were some early risers and early eaters I guessed! The man was burping non-stop and yes, sitting on the front seat I could hear his amplified burps that must have given him a repeat taste of whatever he had gorged in the morning. Eew!!!!!!!

I thought and told myself, "am I over-reacting or is it meant to be always like this in this part of the train!?" Well, then I realised, it’s not the general compartment that was to be blamed. It’s the people. Why is it like this, that some people do not know the basic manners? I kept questioning myself…the whys and whats and hows…all kept coming to my mind but without any answer.

But yes, one thing is certain for me now, I will never travel general class again, no matter how short that journey is!

1 comment:

  1. hi...

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