Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Musings on Rails - 3

I woke up quite early. For a few moments I tried to fathom which direction I was going in. I am not among the directionally challenged but still at times I get the feeling that the train is going in the opposite direction when I do not have the reference of an open window. In a short while the attendant came around with tea and breakfast. Around the same time the train pulled into a station. I looked out curiously. The railway station in the morning displays a different facet altogether. There were quite a few families sleeping on newspapers next to their luggage. The waiting room was overcrowded and woefully inadequate. Predictably, there was a huge line of people outside the loo. While some chose to endure the agonizing wait, others with more urgent needs sought out greener pastures! (literally!) Food stalls were already crowded with patrons. The station was waking up.
Soon the train departed and gradually neared my destination. As we neared the city the track-sides began to get filthier. I have observed this plagues that even the most developed of cities. The approach to the city is always through filth, garbage and tiny children playing dangerously close to the trains. I often wonder why this is the case. Maybe due to the undeveloped railway land around the tracks. But whatever the reason, it is not a pleasant welcome to the city. More like putting ones worst foot forward.
After the mandatory stop at the outer signal, I reached my destination. As I walked away, a part of me was sad at leaving this world behind. But soon others would experience this world from the place I vacated. And I promised myself to get back again as soon as I could. It’s a promise I haven’t fulfilled to date…


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