Tales from the train.

Picture Credit: Stephen Bailey

So I am in this train, surrounded by chirpy, over excited bongs yapping all around me in all three languages—irritating the hell out of me. Next to me is the bong father-son duo who has been staying in Pune for the past 17 years and has already bagged the two window seats, very conveniently. Just opposite to me is a pot bellied Bengali girl of my age who is crying at the drop of her hat, because her transfer plea to Kolkata has been approved. All these three characters are talking to each other and socializing, while I am just observing and feeling like throwing them off the train skillfully, one by one.

I know their life story by heart now, even though I have not exchanged a single word till now. My stone-faced, irritable looks are a clear enough signal that I’m not interested. They have darted a few smiles and looks every now and then to me, hoping that I would say ‘Hi’ and start sharing the story of my life too. But I have kept reading the book that I am currently reading—Chitra Banerjee Devakaruni’s ‘The Palace of Illusions’.

I have also plugged in the earphones of my MP3 player and have listened to music for a while. It was funny because I could see the animated conversation of the bongs in front of me, while Metallica screamed into my ears. It was the perfect example of how movies can be disasters, if music does not match appropriate visuals.

I have kept on texting continuously too, bugging the father to call back, because I am bored. But the Reliance signal inside the train is too weak, so he has just screamed, “Hello? WHAT? Shunte pachhinah.”, while I have banged down the phone, disgusted. So, now I have finally taken out my MacBook (which has made them all stop talking and look at me instead, with mouth wide open, as if I have taken out a hidden AK 47 instead), and started typing this post.

This is the third packet of chocolate this girl is munching at the moment, FYI. She is already one Kit Kat and one Dairy Milk packet down. Now I know the reason behind her amazingly huge double tires, which her tight pink top is failing to hide. The Dad is watching a movie now (with no earphones, compelling everyone else to listen to the booming dialogues of whatever movie he is watching—Gladiator, I’m guessing), while the son has put huge 90s headphones and listening to music, while tapping his fingers and nodding his head, dramatically.

I am going home. Calcutta. Excited.

I love observing people. Gives so much insight about consumer behaviour. I guess this is what an ideal journalist should do anyway. Speak less and just keep observing. Yawwwn! I’m bored. Maybe I will just watch a movie now.

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