Me – The Passenger

College days are not only about attending and bunking classes, writing and skipping exams, learning and not learning, spending and sharing …and finally passing out! The journey starts from when you bid good bye to your old friends and bump into new friends in a newer place.

I was lucky enough to spend five years after school in two totally different places. The course I opted for was different, the climate was different, the food was different, friends were different …and I was deeply in love with all the differences! Coimbatore was then a brand new chapter in my life! I was in a class where I had just ten classmates. There was no last bench; hence in the middle of boring lectures, I had no option to sleep or hide myself behind the tallest boy and play cross-knots. In two years I was taught varied subjects. For the first time I realized, if forcefully it’s a pain even to watch movies. I even attended classes in canteen. I met film stars and celebrities every other month. Sometimes, juniors became our teachers. I never skipped to answer even a single question in any of the semester exams; I could write pages even on things I never ever heard of! I had fun, loads of fun!

Memories of my Coimbatore days are also linked to train journeys. Long journeys in passenger trains used to be a blissful experience. Air-conditioned coach was never even an alternative. The screaming porters in baggy trousers, the sweaty chaiwallahs, the countless vendors and rushing fellow travelers were all part of the pleasant journey back home. Like a child I used to stick my face against the open window to see the rest of the train winding its way through tunnels and paddy fields. When it rains, I let myself get wet, until the irritated person sitting next to me asks to put the shutter down!

Every time I reach home, I had diverse kinds of stories to share with my mom and friends. My decisions to travel were usually taken in just few seconds. Likewise, one Saturday morning, while I was brushing my teeth, I decided to take the next train and go home. Quickly I got inside a pair of unwashed jeans and a crumbled T-shirt, left a note for my roommate who was fast asleep and bribed another friend (promising a sumptuous breakfast from Aryas) for a drop till the railway station.

When I reached there, I jumped off the bike, waved good bye to my friend, rushed to the ticket counter, grabbed a 40-rupees ticket to Kannur and rushed to the platform. I appreciated myself for reaching the station 15 minutes in advance. Stanchly I got inside the train, listening to the railway “akka” who was repeatedly announcing that ‘my’ train was waiting on Platform no 2. While I was eagerly waiting for a cup of coffee
, I met one of my college mates also in the same coach. While exchanging hi-hello notes, he said he was going to Thirunnelveli. Mouth wide open, I said, “Oh My God… Get off the train quickly!! This doesn’t go to Thirunnelveli, this goes to Kannur”. He slapped back, “Oh My God... Get off the train quickly!! This doesn’t go to Kannur, this goes to Thirunnelveli”. It took few minutes for me to realize that I was on ‘Coimbatore-Nagarcoil’ train! With the help of the same sweet guy, I boarded the right train, which had almost started moving by then!

After that, during every train journey I remind myself how I missed an exciting trip to Nagarcoil!


Shiva said...

That was some experience :) I am reminded of one such experience we had as a family!

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