My memorable train journey
“My name is Ranjit Bhatia. I have represented India in Olympics and I also run Marathon”. This is how remember that first solo train journey of mine. I was 16 years old then.
As a kid all of my train journey’s were with parents or relatives. First time, during my 10th grade while studying in MBDAV school I was supposed to travel alone in my maiden journey from Anand (Gujarat) to New Delhi station.
At the Anand Railway station my uncle Narendra came to drop me. He requested the passengers sitting nearby to take care of me during the journey and also that my father will pick me up from the New Delhi railway station. I had fellow passengers & one of them was a school teacher from DPS R.K.Puram with her son and other their acquaintance who seem to be a thin middle aged gentleman.
For me it was a silent witness journey as the fellow passengers were talking to each other and in between asking me few questions about my schooling. The train was a slow passenger/ express train. I hardly remember the name of the train.
As it grew dark in the evening, we all were sitting and hearing each other speak. Sometime after dinner, the conversation kept on going. I was a bit bored and started looking out of the window. For quite a while I was looking out in the dark and seeing the scenic journey. After some time I saw some kind of fire reflection just below the cabin we were sitting in. I wasn’t sure if there can be fire here. Or is it some-kind of trains regular feature. But I was a bit scared, what if it is actually fire?
“There is fire down below”. I spoke to fellow passengers. Let me see, the thin gentlemen got up and saw below the coach. Let me inform the TTE. He went and informed the Traveling Ticket Examiner TTE.
After a while train moved slowly for some distance and was halted at a station. “Good that you noticed it. Else we all might have faced something. My name is Ranjit Bhatia and I represented India in Olympics, I also run Marathon.” Mr. Bhatia introduced himself. Later the train coach was replaced and we could reach our destination with late arrival.
I am counting my blessings and just wonder about the coincidence of 1988.
Today when I just recalled the incident, I googled for “Ranjit Bhatia Olympics”. Answer was “Ranjit Bhatia was an Indian athlete and journalist who participated in the 1960 Rome Olympics”
I do not have more words at this stage to achieve my target of 1000 words a day. So ending at 433.