I was away in Goa on vacation. And, it was a wonderful trip filled with fun. The next blog post will be about that :). We took the train on the way back and forth. We did online ticket booking, and our tickets were waitlisted. But, luckily on the day of the journey, we checked the PNR status and found that our seats were confirmed. Our excitement increased. There is something really wonderful about train journeys if you meet interesting people along the way and have a great scenery to view. The Western Ghats stretch offered great views, and this bunch of retired Brits vacationing in India offered the interesting company. There must be a dozen people in the group who were doing the normal tourist route of Agra, Delhi, Jaipur, Mumbai, Goa, Bangalore, Mysore, Ooty, and Kerala.
There was this lady from a village near Cambridge (nothing village-like about her) who was telling us about her trips to Africa, South America, Mongolia, Silk Route in China and now India. She and her husband are traveling around the globe and especially visiting exotic countries or places with a culture and lifestyle very different from their own. Their zest for life and wanderlust made me want to wish to be just like them when I am their age. Polite to a fault; they seemed like such simple and wonderful folk. Another couple was from York and had a good sense of humor too.  We had a nice conversation about how privatization of trains in Britain did not work to the benefit of the larger population due to exorbitant costs. I guess, we have to learn lessons from such countries before we wish for privatization of our own Railways. Some of them had RAC tickets and had to spend their night sitting, and we all felt very bad about that. Another one who had a berth complained that he did not catch any sleep. That happens I guess with train journeys. I hope they have fun in the rest of their trip and that they take back good memories of their trip here.
Then, we met this elderly couple from Goa who were en route to their daughter’s place in Bangalore. The man was telling us tales of scams and corruption in Railway contracts and ticketing, and how despite computerization crooks find their way around the system and still end up making a quick buck.
For once, I slept well during the night. The journey to Goa was good too. We had gone to Goa with a friend’s family and in all the chatting time seemed to fly. Most times, I do enjoy reading but not this time :). One does long for such journeys if they end up being so pleasant!

Comments

comments

23 Thoughts on “Interesting Train Journey

  1. I knew you must have gone on a holiday. I am glad you enjoyed your trip. I can understand how good it is to travel in groups or with friends, especially in train.
    You are right people from the west really love to see places and most of them start seeing places only when are around 70 or so. But at least they come to places like India and Africa and really enjoy themselves.
    Only Indians living abroad hardly plan anything like this, their entire vacation is spent only with their families, and they end up cribbing about the heat , the disease and all kinds of nonsense.
    Finally they don’t even get to see places of interest in that country too.
    Looking forward to more travel updates with pictures from you.
    Take care, Rama

  2. @rama Yes, I had a nice vacation. These were in their 60’s. But you rightly said that they take things in their stride and hardly seem to complain about the difference in climate or the hot food. What I didn’t mention is that some of them had RAC tickets and had to spend the night sitting. Yet, their zeal to explore is so wonderful And, Indians though used to this climate and being brought up here are the first ones to crib and crib.

  3. Train journeys are enjoyble if fellow passengers are like minded.

    how despite computerization crooks find their way around the system and still end up making a quick buck…..its really sad but true.

  4. Thts kind of interesting account..hope u had a great weateher in Goa…waiting for more

  5. I love train joourneys and see to it that in our annual vacation, we have at least one train journey especially M’lore to Goa. Its so scenic. Just the sights are rejunevating

  6. i remmeber on my visit to goa. we met a couple who were very well dressed. they have been going around in India for the last few months.. but when we inquired their profession she was kinda domestic servant there!

  7. @Renu Yes, one needs to be with like-minded people, you are right.

    @Jon Yes Jon. The weather was great, pleasant and not too hot.

    @bbsearchingself. I can imagine that Mangalore to Goa must be so scenic. One could really enjoy on a train journey if the kids are kept busy :).

    @Jon Oh yes, they have a level of sophistication and education that is a mark of true development all around the country. This lady actually worked in a Tech company. The other couple had held regular jobs too.

  8. There is a famous quote “It is better to travel than to arrive” – I am not sure that is true, but those chance meetings are often very interesting. And meeting you and your family would make enrich their journey too believe me!

  9. @Jane I agree, I would want the journeys to end, after all the destinations hold their charms too :). I am sure they must have enjoyed interacting with all the people they meet, that largely enhances the experience of travel. Thank you for your sweet words about me and my family!

  10. hmm you had fun time in goa then , I always find train journey exciting as we meet so many people with different views ..

    @Rama:- sorry but i dont agree with that , true a lot of indians do such things have a big nose when they come to india when they have gone from the same place and I hate them too.
    But nowadays its not so I have come for holidays to india a few times and not jsut to meet family.

  11. Vacation? Goa? Lucky you! I’m immersed upto my neck in work :(( I went to Goa last year in Feb – just before their Carnival. Although it was an official trip it was really relaxing. I’ve done a post on it too. I’ll look forward to reading yours.

  12. Rachna I have travelled to Goa via Hubli. It is awesome..! you go through some of the best tunnels with waterfalls outside – almost lie a fairy tale. The thickly forested western ghats are a treat to the eye! Train jouneys in India are a different ball game- you pick up conversations and suddenly realize that the destination was here..! Nice post!

  13. I love tarin journeys inspite of the yakky atmosphere within (even though a 1 st class is supposed to be 1 st grade ..u know how it looks).Anyways ,the interesting point is the variety of people you see,friends you make ,fascinating conversation you have ,loads of fun and masti and a sense of tranquility seeing the nature .Where on earth can you get such beautiful experience?good post.

  14. as always the best part of a journey is a chance to meet someone new, I always cherish those wonderful journeys I’ve had.
    Anyways interesting account.
    about Goa- we’re waiting!

    http://vj-menon.blogspot.com/

  15. @Bikram I have met some lousy people too on the train journeys but more often, it is interesting companions that enliven the journey.

    @Deepa Oh, poor you! We could take off from work and as the kids exams got over, we decided to take a break. Must have been fun for you guys.

    @Meera So aptly put. some journeys just finish off in a jiffy, and yes, we did see a lot of tunnels and lush forests too!

    @Raji So true! Where else would one come across so many interesting people of different age groups?

    @Vijay Good to hear that.

  16. For sure, train journeys, if planned well can be fun with friends in a group.

  17. Nice….THe article also reminded me about one of my journey and I wrote two articles on that. Thanks for the inspiration…

  18. @BKChowla With friends, they are a lot of fun, but the element of meeting interesting strangers also can make the journey fulfilling.

    @Vidyadhar Welcome to my blog. I am happy that my post was of inspiration to you. Will surely read your posts :).

  19. hehe I;ve never been on a train, we do not have them here, your journey sure sounded really exciting. I am glad you enjoyed your vacation and welcoe back, i missed your blogs.

  20. I miss train journey. No trains here. I used to love traveling on train. Some pictures pls.

  21. @Emmy Thank you. You are so sweet :).

    @A Sure, in the next post.

  22. train journey ar the most memorable

  23. Train travels hold a charm of its own more than any other mode of public sector transport. It is indeed nice to read such heartening posts.

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