trains and pains

Posted on Zaadz Jan 31st, 2008
The train is always fun. Especially in my country. Twice a week I take a local train to capital city and back, a trip of 35 minutes. Often I use this time to read, sometimes to meditate. People seldom talk to me, they go to work. Work is a serious matter.
Then where is the fun?Well,
monday 7 jan 2008,
the first real working day of the year,
they, whoever THEY are, adapted the schedules countrywide.
Our line did not change at all, except, to our surprise, they adapted the amount of carriages. (exceptionally .. ?? – at least that first day)Now, imagine a morning train of 8 o’clock to capital city, usually 8 carriages, about 500 people.

The 7th jan we got 2 carriages, yes 2, just enough for squeezing about 150 people … but all 500 went on this iron bus. sardines in a tin can … that’s how we felt.

3 days later

They cancelled my train. I decided not to wait for the next, not knowing why they cancelled, it could well have been an accident. Moreover, I had not yet forgotten feeling like fish, and my imagination saw 800 people for 400 places, …
That day I disappeared into traffic jam, parked the car at the edge of capital city and continued my trip on the metro. Metro carries different people. They look happier than the train-people. I feel more like a metro person.

But today was really fun.

An evening train this time. 5 o’clock, capital city, central station.
200 people embark here. 250 in the next station.

The last day of the month, and the same situation as the first day of the month: 2 carriages.

Running for the last door,
shouting at the conductor:
“can we drive first class?”
“Sit wherever you find a place”

Bewilderment: this is not a normal train. This is a mail carriage: wooden floor, iron bars 60cm high at all sites … I run … pass into the next wagon … first class ok, seat found … looking back into the animal carriage. Some poor travellers (100+) find a space on the floor and on the iron bars.

Next station: look at the faces of the people waiting for the train. They see at once it is too short. For them there is no more space. This is the train in Schindler’s List.

Moments later I ask whether nobody wants to take my place, but all look like lambs, they don’t dare to enter first class. They don’t dare to ask.
Somehow this is very sad.
2 stops later I convince 2 people to take empty seats in first class, and reassure them it is ok, that I asked the conductor. Another 2 stops and I’m home. This was not a dream. It’s a pity i forgot my camera.

The train, is everyday a new surprise … everyday a new experience, everyday, new expressions on our faces.

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