Sunday, January 25, 2015

Train Journey - Vacation 2014 - Chennai to Bangalore

The Breakfast

The train rolled out of the Chennai central station fast. That was a electric train. So it started to run fast. After a while, I felt hungry and waited for the food vendor to show up. A vendor entered  my compartment shouting,"Idli, Vada." I waved my hand at him and bought a packet. The Idli was cold. Sambar was watery. The coconut chutney was sour. Probably I bought the food that was made for the previous late night travellers. I shoved inside whatever I could and drank the only pleasant fluid that I had. The water that I bought from the ZeroB outlet.

The elderly people started to talk among themselves. The little girls felt fresh after a short nap at the lap of their mother who was sitting next to me. The younger one stuck to her mother's chest always. The elder one squeezed herself between her mom and me. I guess they didn't buy ticket for them, since they were too young. So they didn't have their own place to sit. The three elderly persons, one man and two women, who were sitting opposite to me, didn't even bother to offer space for the elder kid.  They were all travelling together and the mother of two little girls addressed them as sisters and uncle. She looked different from others. She was dark, short and thin. The women and man looked fair, and healthier than her. The little girls looked exactly like their mother. I some how felt that this lady with the kids were not getting her fair share of respect and care from the other elders there. She was the only one that was tending to both the kids. None of the elders offered any help to her, when either of the kids wanted to use the rest room. When the elder whispered to her mom that she was hungry, the mom looked helplessly at the elders. But I could see no response from them. The kid said that she is hungry, this time a little louder that others could hear. There was no response again.

Water Bottle Making Rounds

I felt very pity for the mother and her two little daughters. While I was pondering about the ways that I could lend my help to them, she called an elder and asked,"Sister, where is Idli package?" One among them pointed to another person who was sitting two rows back. This lady left the elder kid with me and carried the little one to get the Idlis. She came back with the silver bucket of Idlis. And I saw another woman accompanying her with another silver bucket of Coconut Chutney. I felt happy to see the little girls relishing their breakfast. The mom was happy too. The elder kid asked for water and all the elders answered at once,"We forgot to keep the water bottles in the bag." I offered my bottle of water immediately. The other elders started to have their breakfast once these two little ones finished. My water bottle was making rounds, jumping from one row to another. I was only praying the almighty that I shouldn't feel thirsty until I reach my friend's home in Bangalore. I have a very sensitive stomach. So, I don't have food and water from outside shops unless the situation demand.

The train stopped on the way somewhere. The man got down, bought a bottle of water and gave it to me thanking me for offering my water bottle to them. The elders were all praise for me, for lending the water bottle to them and letting them to finish it. I politely said thanks and buried my face into Jeff's Kane and Abel.  I didn't touch the water bottle and left it hanging in the bottle pouch and told them to use it since they were going to travel till the Bangalore main station. I got down at KR Puram railway station and waited for my friend, at whose place I was going to stay, to pick me up. I was feeling very very thirsty as well as hungry. I was waiting for the moment to calm down my growling stomach and wet my dry throat.

Luv u all
Uma
Freelancer

photo credit: ranjit via photopin cc