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"Random musings"

Dally and Railway musings…

Dally metro is good… but I still like the wind in my hair when I hang out of the Virar local clutching on for dear life;) The metro is just too aseptic and characterless for my Mumbai sensibilities… the alternate explanation of course is a mighty case of sour grapes.

The Delhi Gwalior train ride has to be the best experience I have had with the Indian railways so far.
317kms - three hours flat, comfiest chair car ever…. Breakfast, coffee, and newspapers (too bad we stuffed ourselves silly on ‘aloo ke parathe’ outside New Delhi station, but food on the table was dealt with in a just manner;) )

The German built coaches of the Delhi-Bhopal Shatabdi(fastest train in the country if you go by some accounts) had just pulled out of New Delhi railway station. Me and a friend were lounging back into the most lounge-able seats that Lalooji’s ministry can provide. Semi synthetic female voice droned on about the sights to see in Agra (our next stop) taking care to omit little details like the dirty stained marble of the Taj and the ambient temperature outside the train. Loudishpikar suddenly crackled, soothing voice modulated female was replaced by a harsh “Yatri kripaya dhyan de, coach kramank C4 mein ek yatri ki tabiyat achanak bigad gayi hai. Agar train par sawar koi daactar sahab ho to we jald hi coach C4 mein aane ki kripa karen”

My post-prandial nap thus rudely disturbed, I nudge friend. Friend raises eyebrows “what to do?” I was like “We go!” friend shrugs and both rise. After a bit of fumbling with precision made German doors we finally reach C4.

We rush to obese man looking uneasy but bravely smiling. I was about to ask man what was wrong, when people next to me go “Lagta hai train pe koi Doctor nahin”. They just seemed to look right through us. The guard and the ticket examiner also didn’t seem to have the foggiest…

Realization strikes…!(us not themL ) See, Delhi was supposed to be a fun trip. Hence by the time we got on to the train we had hungover eyes and three day old stubbles. Besides we had also slept the previous night in the same faded dirty jeans and T-shirts.
All in all, we looked nothing like what the ‘lay’ junta expect a pair of well-qualified respectable physicians (this is MY blog so I’ll say what I want) to look like.
Well, to cut to the chase, while we were thus immersed in pondering over how our appearance had failed us and how they would probably ask to see credentials, a suitably middle aged man wearing a tie and with a leather case came tumbling along and told the ‘patient’ to relax sip some water and wait for the motion sickness to tide over. We of course, slunk back to our seats, soberer.

It was decided then and there that something shall be done about our appearance. We were going to visit a friends place for the first time and we didn’t want her extended family to think that they had a couple of junkies staying over. After some thought it was decided that a shave each is what we need.

Now me dearies, those of you who have experienced the extremely comfortable suspension on Indian trains know that this idea could only be the product of sick minds ‘dying’ to slit their own throats. We were desperate here and besides, this was a new super cool coach, so we expected the suspension to be better. After a brief reconnaissance mission it was gathered that the loos were okay and even had sockets for electric shavers.(but the Railway babus in all their wisdom had provided 110volt sockets, are only tourists allowed to use electric shavers?)
The plan was to get up quietly, gather shaving kits from respective rucksacks and commandeer a bathroom each. But as we both got up and walked to the bathrooms I could feel eyes boring into us. Why?

Realization strikes ...(part two… us again)! Two suspicious looking characters carrying something in small bags to the bathrooms in a co-ordinated move… first guess? “Bomb threat?” “Can they highjack the train?”

Almost burst out laughing this time, thankfully no one pulled the chain or jumped us. It would suffice to say that we emerged valiantly (without a single nick, the suspension WAS good) clean-shaven and went back to our seats with only a stare from the railway police guard on the train.

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  • Blogger thotaster says so:
    Thursday, June 08, 2006 11:01:00 PM  

    Once you doctor then you must especially while travelling,

    1)have mirror-glass face or well-mown beard

    2)tie in pocket for quick retrieval

    3)glasses...good accessory for act of pondering diagnosis

    4)black bag ala hindi movies

    5)ability to treat all conditions with single pill and diagnose with pulse only

    6)maybe also stick red cross on balck bag top

  • Anonymous Riggs says so:
    Tuesday, June 13, 2006 5:44:00 AM  

    Very cool. Haven't been on a good train journey in forever. Must do, one of these days, to check what Laloo-jee's done! top

  • Anonymous Riggs says so:
    Tuesday, June 13, 2006 5:44:00 AM  

    Very cool. Haven't been on a good train journey in forever. Must do, one of these days, to check what Laloo-jee's done! top