Saturday, April 21, 2007

Back home

It’s a quarter to four on a Saturday afternoon and here I am in my house in Calcutta with nothing to do. Err, technically speaking, of course I can keep myself occupied with a dozen things if I wanted to, but then, I’m me and I opt for the lazier way out and say that ‘I have nothing to do’.

Travelling in the train from Mumbai to Calcutta was unbearable…for the first few hours anyway. You see, according to me, one of the greatest pleasures in life is being aboard an AC coach in service of the Indian railways and to be armed at the same instant with a good book. The former without the latter is a deadly combination, as you’re then left with no other option but to:

a) listen to aunties discussing the ‘kundli’, the guest-list and the wedding card of Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai

b) get irritated to hell by the snoring of an obese Bengali dude who just about manages to fit into the side berth and believes that sleeping away to glory (snoring in tow, of course) for 25 out of the 30 hour train journey is a brilliant strategy

c) stare out of the window praying for a station to arrive where a decent book-stall would be visible

(c) mentioned above was how I spent the first night in the train as (a) and (b) above were quite unquestioningly thrust upon me. I did everything I could to fight the fit of depression. I called up the Whale and Dolphin and tried to explain how the poor me had scouted the entire length of the Kurla Junction in a desperate bid to find a book stall owner, but to no avail.

Relief only came next morning at Nagpur station where I literally jumped out of the train and ran to the nearest book-stall. Talk about a weary traveller from the desert finding an oasis! I lapped up the books just as the aforementioned traveller would have attacked water. I decided to give in to temptation and bought two books; ‘Five Point Someone’ by Chetan Bhagat and ‘The Afghan’ by Frederick Forsyth.

The Heavens, it seemed, had decided to give me a fair return journey home after all, as Sam, Dada and Anubhav Misra came over to meet me up at Raipur station. Felt really nice meeting up with them. The five-minute stop at Raipur seemed to end too soon and I almost felt guilty for having asked them to come down to the station and meet up with me. But then, what the heck, they were ‘vella’ in any case and hey, given the situation, I would’ve myself hopped on to a bike to go and meet my friends at the station.

On returning to Calcutta, I spent the first day in Dad’s office. Met up with Ravi in the evening, and as is our norm, we headed over to a dhaba for a cup of chai for him and gilassi of milk for me.

Ah, the joys of being back home. :)


ani said...

'ome tweet 'ome!!! >---:D---<

Shekhar said...

ani: Yes...ain't it a nice feeling. :))))