Tuesday, August 16, 2005

freedom


The sleeping countryside rolled past through the window of the train. I was returning home after a conference.
I love conferences. Excellent presentations and discussions... meeting old professors, seniors and friends... good food... wine... laughter... shopping... and finally goodbyes till we meet few months later.
The lush greenery of ‘gods own country’ was soothing after the heat, dust and bustle of Chennai.
The monsoon had carpeted the earth luxuriantly with green. The clear still waters reflected rows and rows of coconut palms. Lilac water lilies bloomed in clusters…
Fat contended cows grazed on wide open fields. Eagles swooped across clear blue sky... fluffy whilte clouds floated lazily. Bright yellow butterflies flitted from one flower to the next.
Trees swayed in gay abandon. The exuberant grass and rushes waved merrily. The banyan leaves danced wildly...
I longed to drift out of the window and blend with all the harmony and rapture.
The train was slowing down. More tracks appeared. Huge poles... cables... lights... plastic bottles, bags and cups were littered all around. Garbage accumulated here and there.
We were approaching kollam station.
I watched the people on the platform.
Men and women rushed. Bodies bent with heavy shoulder bags... clenched frowning faces… some waddled along balancing huge suitcases in both hands. Women carrying sleeping babies tried hard to keep up with rest of the family.
A family slouched on a bench looking tired and bored... probably waiting for some connecting train.. Luggage was littered all around them. Their two kids rolled on the ground trying to amuse themselves
A railway official was talking grimly into his wakie talkie. His body drooped with fatigue. The white uniform was crumpled and dusty...
Today is supposed to be a holiday..! ... We are celebrating our 57years of independence!!!
The train started to move... I felt relieved...
We were leaving the clenched frowning faces celebrating their independence...
We were again entering the enchanting world of swaying palms... lazy clouds... contended cows... dancing leaves and flirting butterflies…

9 comments:

silverine said...

Railway Stations are depressing places. It is also a happy place when you see friends or relations get down that train.

Jithu said...

nice description of gods own country.. was almost seeing it in my mind.. railway stations... hmm... lets hope ppl will change some day!

Geo said...

u know how to carry ur readers with u... great

Matter of Choice said...

hey..the greenery of kerala is best appreciated after a sojourn in the dusty chennai...i did that two weeks back..unfortunately i missed the rains :(, parents promised me it was raining cats n dogs but in my 4 days it never rained :((

beautiful post!

cheers
anish

Parna said...

i love train travels. and watching the countryside pass by, wishing i could just get down and play in the cornfield or maybe knock on a farmer's door and live there for a day. railway stations are another story. they speak of everyday life, sometimes grim and sometimes not. but a reality all the same

Parna said...

i love train travels. and watching the countryside pass by, wishing i could just get down and play in the cornfield or maybe knock on a farmer's door and live there for a day. railway stations are another story. they speak of everyday life, sometimes grim and sometimes not. but a reality all the same

hope and love said...

true silverine..
jithu txs..
geo .. is it so ..? thats a nice compliment..!!MOC.. very true we take the beauty for granted..
do u live in chennai..?
yes parna.. we dont see such enchanting places during our road travels..

injinuity said...

the indian railways... I had been on a train once... and I swore to god that i will never again get on one ever again... so I find it interesting that you have an affinity to it.

clash said...

once someone told, if its darkness all around what will you write about??
the answer is obviously darkness!