“QUIRKY EXPERIENCES IN INDIAN TRAIN TRAVELS”
I was panting as I came running in to catch the train just in time, and within seconds the train left the platform. I believed luck was on my side that day as I had got reservation too, at the last minute. Since it was a night journey I made arrangements to sleep while I waited for the TTE. Things appeared fine while I settled down. The passenger seated near me was having a few sips of what looked like a cola drink. His eyes were red and looked quite unusually “sober” too. I knew he wasn’t in good “spirits” and so did not engage him in a conversation. But his attitude that night didn’t leave a good taste.
Still nothing unusual was noticed till the TTE completed his rounds. It was well into the cold wintry night, and so I tugged into my blanket and went off to sleep. But soon there was some commotion. The noise around was disturbing me much. Unable to sleep peacefully I kept shifting from side to side on my berth. Something told me that all wasn’t well in the compartment and instinctively I got up to take a look at what’s happening around me.
Also read: Unscheduled Halts Irksome #BlogchatterA2Z
My hunch about the guy having cola drink had come true. He was drunk. The smell from him was a giveaway and he was talking gibberish. By now the crowd had gathered trying to soften him up. But the more you engaged with him the more he flew off the handle. My luck of getting into the train in time was quickly unfolding into a hapless encounter.
Blabbering whatever he could mouth, he started singing loudly as if the compartment world was his stage. Taking off his shirt, he was quickly turning into a nuisance for women passengers, who were travelling together, but quite unfortunate to have been allotted seats near him that night.
When questioned about his drunken state, he started arguing with other passengers. In his inebriation, where he was barely able to stand, he was reaching out to pull the chain, when fellow passengers pinned him down. That’s when he turned even nasty by puking on the floor. Some passengers decided to take things into their hands, before sane sense prevailed.
We had to move fast to bring things under control. A lot of phone calls were flying out with people trying to reach authorities, so that this person takes the exit door at the nearest station and the compartment is made clean and neat for further travel. There was a lot of commotion till then. Some wanted him to be handed over to police while many others wanted him to be offloaded and fend for himself at an intermediate station.
Ultimately the TTE stepped in to bring a closure and he brought in the police. Also at the next station the team of cleaners swung into action, thereby sparing us all of the misery of having to travel that night in unbearable conditions.
Truth is, this drunkard isn’t the first nor will he be the last to board trains. The railways have no way to check out such passengers before boarding the train. Sad but true. So ya, the next time you board the train and see a guy or a group having cola, your senses would obviously tell you to watch out for some “show” that may unfold. I will cover the menace of the beggars in one of my upcoming posts.
Until then here’s signing off for the day. Please come back for more tomorrow.
The quirky experiences on an Indian train travel continues….