India, Travelin' the train vol.1
A train get speeding up. I stand on the platform and just watch the passing
train. Well, this is the end.
"This is a first class carriage, you know? If you don't wanna pay
the first class fare, five times more, move to the second class told on
your ticket immediately" A conductor suggested me. So I got off at
this station for taking the second class carriage. However what I saw at
the door of the second class in the front of the train was a bunch of passengers
was trying to climbing up on the deck. Some of them were even hanging on
the door. If I should give it up? But it's possible the situation's same
for the next train.
At the moment, I catch glimpse of the other second class like carriage
is passing by. Plus, it looks having enough to space to stand on. I run
on the platform with a big shoulder bag and chase it. A Indian passenger
who see me stretches the arm to me. "Hey! gimmi your bag!" I
take off the bag, actually it's 16pounds weight, from the shoulder and
pass it to the man. He hangs it and draws it back to the deck. Now this
is my turn. I grip the handle and jump on the step. Huh. If it took few
more seconds, I couldn't catch it up. I thank to the guy on the deck. There
are crowd on the deck. They shrug me when we meet eyes each other. "By
the way, Is this a second class car?" They nod. Finally I get to the
destination. How many times I have to repeat the messy stuff?
It may not be so complicated if you know about train service in India.
But I've never easily taken the train. The first tough experience was on
the overnight train from Delhi to Jaisalmer.
At Delhi station I was looking for my place "Sleeper (second) class
car #5" which was written on the ticket. As walking on the platform,
I found "S5" on the tiny electric signboard's hanging from the
roof. "That must be Sleeper class 5" I ensured. Found my bunk
and settled down there. Then I talked to the passenger face to and took
a snap photo. The sleep car was old but had authentic Indian atmosphere.
Gradually, passengers were coming into the car. The train was now moving
slowly. Shortly a conductor came for inspection. I showed my ticket. "Neup"
He said. "What you said?" "You got wrong car. This is the
sleeper class #1. The #5's all way back. You gotta move out in a minute"
Oh, what a hell is the one minute rule. As thinking like that, the train
would stopped in one minute. He meant I change the car at this station.
Other passenger pointed outside from the window as if saying "now's
the chance" "Oh! I gotta get out from the window?" I approached
the pointed window with hesitation. All passengers in the compartment stood
up and stopped me. "No, No, No, you get off from the deck door"
I laughed. Yeah, exactly. They never expected such a high technique, getting
off from the window, on me.
But actually there was no space in the aisle by the crowd. "Are you
getting off?" "Yes, I am" "Hey. Give the way, this
guy's getting off here!" Somebody shouted for me. Finally, I got to
the door way. And jumped off from the deck. Zac! ??? Rail stones. Not platform.
'If this is not station? Signal stop?' In the silence and night black of
India, thirty some car train lay beside me just like a sleeping monster.
" Sleeper Class " India 2012