The Journey Worth Million Dollars

One Friday afternoon, I started for home by train. Not all train journeys have given me the same experience, though the route has been the same – Kannur to Coimbatore; Coimbatore to Kannur! While I have enjoyed some journeys that I feel interrupted when I reach my destination, some have been so annoying that I wish if I was teleported, so that I could just evaporate. At times, I make friends with people who share my seat; a few times, I sleep off like I was drugged! Otherwise I get absorbed in the view through the window or deeply in some reading material. 

This time, my pick was a book. I was so involved in it that I hated any sort of distraction. In such a state of mind, passenger train is perhaps the worst option. But a hostel-living, college-going student’s luxuries were very limited. While I usually enjoy “Pardesi Pardesi jaana nahi” by Indian Railways-sponsored Lata Mangeshkars and Kumar Sanus; this time I almost closed my ears. I gave the singing-duo some money, signaling them to evacuate the place.

A family consisting of a thick-bearded father, loose-tongued mother, pranky son, restless daughter and an ever-crying infant got seated in the same aisle as mine. I cursed my stars for picking the wrong spot, not foreseeing irritating neighbors for the next few hours! To not top up the disaster, I decided that I will be all to myself and at any cost, will not draw the attention of kids. I could feel the little ones turn monkeys, hopping from one end of the compartment to the other. I could smell samosas and chai, could hear biscuit packets being crushed and kur-kure chewed. I was also listening to their endless silly doubts on almost everything under and over the sun.

Appa… Why are the trees running backwards when we are moving forward?”
“If I pull the chain, will they arrest me or Appa?”
“Will I see original God in Kerala?”  (…even I did not undertand!)
I sat numb to all the activities around me, not taking my eyes off the pages of the book.

That is when I heard the lady repeat the question, “Where are you going to?” I knew answering the first question will lead to 100s of them following. So, I kept quiet, not even looking at her. The lady seemed to be capable of making me puke even my ancestral history! She continued, “Where are you going? Palakkad?” Wow… stars started pouring down my mind and brain when I heard ‘Palakkad’. Hopefully that is where they are going to get down!opeH

She told her son, “Share your biscuits with that akka(‘that’ akka is me!)
Son, “No… I will not” (how sweet and obedient!)
Lady to me, “Please don’t mind huh… At times, these kids are out of their mind!”
I still did not react… (Wonder how I managed to do that!!!)

Lady to her husband, “From then I have been observing, I think this girl is deaf!”
Husband, “May be…”
“The biscuit question was only to test her; I was sure Pappu would only say NO! Now I have confirmed”

Wow... What a hilarious woman. I cannot tell you how hard it was to hold back my expressions and laughter!

Rolling her eyes and pointing her finger at her son who continued to be an irritating brat, she said, “If you don’t sit quietly, you will also become deaf like that akka. She lost her ears because she was also unruly when she was a kid.”
“Unruly???!!!” I froze! Look… how I am being used as an example!
Anyways, the mom’s trick worked. He sat next to her wordlessly, scrutinizing me.

The girl opened her question bag again, Amma… deaf people are also dumb right?” 
“There is a nerve which connects your ear and the tip of your tongue. For such people, that nerve is not long enough to complete the connection! …and so, she is dumb and also deaf”. Then she looked at me with a sad face. 

Her explanation reminded me of Raghupathy (the boy in my hostel mess), who asked me once, “Is it after they started making computer mouse using dead rats, that plague started spreading in India?"

My mobile started vibrating from my pocket. I was sad about breaking the fun when it is at its peak. They turned statues when I answered the call, “Ah… Amma, I boarded the train; I shall give you a call when I am about to reach home. …okay bye!”

Girl, "Amma, her nerve is very well connected!"

The expression which bloomed on the lady’s face followed by her husband’s smile and chillingly question-marked kids were worth 10 million dollars!!

(The lady did not open her mouth till they got down at Palakkad and I continued to smile at myself till I reached Kannur. The journey was definitely more entertaining the book!)


tinu said...

that was a real gud post....

sajinrp said...

omg, i always wonder such things only happen wen u r around !
truly hilarious !

Abhilash said...

ha ha ha ha...

Jabardast post boss!!!

That was nice, reading your journey.

You are a really good brat however the one with the nerve connected. :)

I always had such questions for my mother. Creative children can only ask such questions :)

Once we were travelling in a train and I insisted my father to purchase an ice cream for me. I had a practice of asking my mother for everything eventhough I did the output in my way.

I took the icecream and asked her what I should do with it and she replied in a manner, a bit kidding to throw it outside the window. Being a obedient child I did the same.

It gave me a good lesson to stop asking silly questions and concentrate on more better eating exercises.

Children always ask questions that appear silly but are really worth saying "silly".

sony said...

hahhahahah this was cool.....me n varsha enjoy our train journey till thiruvalla....u get to se such weird characters on the way its nt funny....

Anonymous said...

Hilarious, truly hilarious! :-)
What I loved the most is "Amma, her nerve is very well connected!"

You are such a happening person...


lostworld said...

LOL..I never expected a tale like this :-)) Hilarious. I must try it out!


shameel said...

i wonder hw u managed to control urself to not answerin the phone in 'sign language'.. nee athum athinte appuravum cheyyumm.. heee.. my buddy is really coool..

$$ said...

@ Tinu - Thanks a lot :)

@ Sajin - Danks...! Exciting things happen with everybody, just that you need to realize what is exciting in it!
Forget it... I was just trying to be a Gyan-Master! ;)

@ Abhilash - Thanks! :) Yeah.. I am also glad that my nerve is well connected!
You too, are such an obedient mamma's boy! :)

@ Sony - Sony-Varsha combo can end up doing anything! I know! :)

@ Preeth - Thank you. Please refer my reply to Sajin ;) ;)

@ Lost world - try it out and blog your experience. We are waiting...

@ Shameel - Now I think I should have tried that out to hear them say, "Apart from being dumb and deaf, this girl is lil crazy too!"

I think I have adopted the pranky side of me from my friends. So, u r also one of the culprits :)

Aishwarya V said...

ha ha. Hilarious indeed :) I shall use your BKMs in my next journey!

lostworld said...

yello..u have been tagged & awarded @ my blog! :)

$$ said...

@ Aishwarya - ...n please lemme know the results! :)

@ Lost World - Thanks a ta-ta-ta ton! This is in fact the first one which I am receiving! :)Hence I deserve to be excited! :)

Anil P said...

Entertaining post. Talk of innovative use of deafness, well you've got it bang on.

I wonder what thoughts circled in the lady's head afterward :-)

Meethi said...

Lol.. da soo typical Shalu

Nacha said...

lol Shalini, did all of this really happen? One is allowed to add sugar and spice to the original fare but I just cannot believe the original fare was, by itself, such a spread!! ;)

$$ said...

@ Anil P - Thank you! :) At least from then on, I wish the lady thinks twice before drawing conclusions!

@ Meethi - How I wish you were also there with me; the experience would have been more hilarious! :)

@ Nacha - Yeah... this time, no masala was addded, except a pinch of salt - to taste! :)

Anonymous said...

Hello, are you serious....Can't believe these kinda people still exists.......you shouldn't have attended that call :)
between it was hilarious

The Layman said...

Oh you cruel cruel woman :D
Your experience and the lesson learnt by that woman are both worth million dollars :D

Sorcerer said...

This is truly wonderful..
practical joke eh!
loved every bit of it

$$ said...

@ Anish - Thanks! Yes; you have to believe these kinda people - my kind & her kind, both do exist! ;) ;)

@ The Layman - Yeah.. My experience was definitely worth million dollars! :)

@ Sorcerer - Thanks a ton! :)

Shiva said...

"What a hilarious woman. I cannot tell you how hard it was to hold back my expressions and laughter!" - Such guts from the family!! :) :)

"Exciting things happen with everybody, just that you need to realize what is exciting in it! " - I hope am not sounding cliched, but certain things define you I suppose like this comment as a reply :)

Parikshith Kumar said...

That was really funny! It sometimes pays to be deaf.


$$ said...

@ Siva - Thanks Buddy! :) You are so motivating....

@ Parikshith Kumar - Thank You! :)

Anonymous said...


The scarlettpimpernnel

zero-state said...


$$ said...

Scarlettpimpernnel & Zero-state - Thank You! :) :)

Anonymous said...

hahahhah..dat was truly a good post :)I too travel in trains n get to see 'specimens' but unlike your case , I dont get such funny companions ;)

Shimmer said...

expressionlessness!! gimme hi5! :D
very nice post:D and funnyly wise kids :P

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