Friday, 3 June 2016

Train Journey In India

Travelling in India via train is one of the most exciting experiences I had during my college days. We faced lots of difficulties while travelling, especially during our initial journeys. However I must be Thankful to the Indian railways for their great services to all the Bhutanese students like me. I have had both good and bad times while travelling. Among several train journeys, I marked one terrible journey which I wish to share here:

It was the during 2015 winter vacation while I was returning to my college. On 16th January 2015, at around 1 PM, we reached Alipurdaur train station and were glad to know that there was no delay by the train. We were soon inside the northeast express heading to the Anand Vihar terminal. The train proved to be a real express without any delay and we were placed with high hopes that we shall reach our destination on time.

But it proved to be the opposite one as we entered west of Uttar Pradesh as the train moved inch by inch. It was my first time travelling in a sleeper class and I hardly knew the unavailability of blankets and mobile chargers. It bore a habit of halting on the track for hours and our phones were totally out of battery and got switched off very soon. We couldn’t contact our friends and family anymore. But we survived with a hope that we may reach there soon within 5/6 hours. It was scheduled to reach at our destination by 17 January evening but to our surprise that scheduled evening passed right there at the west of Uttar Pradesh. It was damn irritating seeing our train halt at a place for hours. It was a winter month and due to the cold our suffering was increased with chilling cold. After several hours we reached a station and I found myself very much hungry in search of something to eat. I rushed to the station to get something but the train moved within a minute and I came back empty handed. I regretted for not taking my dinner. (I didn’t take it because I thought the journey will end soon and I can eat something better at my hostel) My hell kicked off with an empty stomach in a cold winter night. It was an extremely terrible night with our train halting on the track and the movement was as if it was completely ceased.

Several hours later, I thought I should get some sleep because the train was not going to move at all. I got into my berth and prepared myself to sleep but I knew I would not be able to sleep as it was very cold. Still I tried my best to get the sleep. Another reason that didn’t allow me to sleep was an old fat man, with whom I was sharing the same boogie. He was from Bihar and his snoring was loud enough to disturb the sleep of whole boogie. His snoring sound was damn irritating and most of the people complained a lot but that was of no use as he didn’t do it on purpose. The night seemed like a month where I constantly woke up in a hope that the train would be moving. I woke up several times just to see if the train was moving. After what seemed like a decade in hell, the night broke out and the train started to move and that was a happy thing for me. At 11 am, next day we reached our station and we were so much tired and hungry when we got out of the train. It was extremely horrible journey for me.

At times, we have to run on the platform to search for our berth and sometimes it happened that our train got delayed for more than 10 hours. Another peculiarity of the Indian railways is the presence of beggars and shemales (male in female costumes) especially in West Bengal and Bihar. Inside the train, lots of stuffs are brought for sale but at higher rates. Robbery is very common if we don’t be careful of our belongings. Lots of thieves execute their plan during night while the passengers sleep.

Travelling in train with friends is always fun and exciting. Thought it takes so many hours, we get plenty of time to talk and play so many games with our friends.  

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