Pink Twins

Pink Twins
Gangtok

Yellow Villa

Yellow Villa
Gangtok

Sparkling Rai Saag

Sparkling Rai Saag
Gangtok

Lovely Poppy Flowers

Lovely Poppy Flowers
Gangtok

A Different type of Seasonal Flower

A Different type of Seasonal Flower
Gangtok

Blue Flavour

Blue Flavour
Gangtok

Pink & White Combination

Pink & White Combination

Dark Pink Flavour

Dark Pink Flavour
Gangtok 6th March 16

Purple Charm

Purple Charm
CS Quarter Gangtok

Magnificent Yellow and Red Tulip

Magnificent Yellow and Red Tulip
Conservatory Near Selep Tank

Charm of Red Tulips

Charm of Red Tulips
Conservatory near Selep Tank

Lord Buddha

Lord Buddha
1-D Terminal New Delhi

Attraction of Red Panda

Attraction of Red Panda
Saramsa Garden

Lord Ganesh made of oranges

Lord Ganesh made of oranges
Saramsa Garden

Charm of Seasonal Flower

Charm of Seasonal Flower
Gaurds Ground Gangtok

Unmatched beauty

Unmatched beauty
Sikkim Organic Festival

Green is always soothing

Green is always soothing
Sikkim Organic Festival 2016

Yellow Orchid

Yellow Orchid
Somewhere in Gangtok

White Orchid

White Orchid
Manan Kendra

Purple Orchid

Purple Orchid
Manan Kendra, 31-10-2015

Gift of Nature

Gift of Nature
Near Cherry Building

Majestic View of Sea

Majestic View of Sea
Marina, Chennai, 19-10-15

Typical Sikkim Pillar Carving and painting

Typical Sikkim Pillar Carving and painting
Hotel Nork Hill

Mirror Reflection, Changed Angle

Mirror Reflection, Changed Angle
Nork Hill, 24-11-2015

Mirror Trick

Mirror Trick
Hotel Nork Hill, Gtok, 24-11-2015

Yes we have the power

Yes we have the power
Qtr at Devt Area, 25-11-2015

Majestic View of K.jenga from SLA

Majestic View of K.jenga from SLA
Gangtok dt 20-11-2015

MIRROR IMAGE OR COMPUTER TRICK

MIRROR IMAGE OR COMPUTER TRICK
NEW DELHI 22-10-15

BRILLIANT KATHAK PERFORMANCE

BRILLIANT KATHAK PERFORMANCE
MRS MALI SMU 13-10-2015

SAROD RECITAL

SAROD RECITAL
SMU CONVOCATION 13-10-15

SHOWCASING SIKKIM CULTURE

SHOWCASING SIKKIM CULTURE
ITM GANGTOK 14-10-15

RED BEAUTY

RED BEAUTY
GANGTOK

ARCHITECTURAL MARVEL

ARCHITECTURAL MARVEL
MAYFAIR GANGTOK

OM NAMAH SHIVAY

OM NAMAH SHIVAY
MAYFAIR GANGTOK 02-11-15

Smile and Joy

Smile and Joy
24th September Delhi

Catelia Orchid

Catelia Orchid
Gangtok

Beautiful Chinaware Lampshed

Beautiful Chinaware Lampshed
Gangtok

Catelia Orchid

Catelia Orchid
Gangtok on 7-10-15

Morning Glow

Morning Glow
Denzong Regency- Gangtok on 7-10-15

Pink Orchid

Pink Orchid
Pakyong Area

Green Orchid

Green Orchid
Bojeytar Pakyong 26 Feb 15

Tabla or Log Piece

Tabla or Log Piece
HMI Darjeeling Nov 2014

Hand can do anything

Hand can do anything
Birla Science Museum Kolkata

Legacy and Heritage

Legacy and Heritage
Indian Museum Kolkata

Queen Nephretus of Egypt

Queen Nephretus of Egypt
India Museum Kolkata 4th Mar 15

A Buddhist Stone Art Piece

A Buddhist Stone Art Piece
Tashi Delek June 2014

Foot Print of Bason

Foot Print of Bason
Satpura Forest

Foot Print of Tiger

Foot Print of Tiger
Satpura Forest (MP) March 14

Unique Piece of Pine Wood

Unique Piece of Pine Wood

Lovely Twins

Lovely Twins

Pink,Pink,Pink

Pink,Pink,Pink
Orchid,not only Spl ,It lasts longer Also

Clean Water has a Different Impact

Clean Water has a Different Impact
Rangeet at Jorethang ,24-11-14

What a Ravishing Beauty ?

What a Ravishing Beauty ?
Teesta near Kalijhora, 19-12-14

Pre Dawn Captivating Beauty

Pre Dawn Captivating Beauty
K.JUNGA, 6:20 AM 18 -12-14

Another Dawn View -Different Angle

Another Dawn View -Different Angle
K.JUNGA, 18-12-14

View at Dawn in Biting Cold

View at Dawn in Biting Cold
K.JUNGA 18-12

Dawn Scene-2

Dawn Scene-2
V Awas 18 -12-14

Dawn Scenario

Dawn Scenario
K.JUNGA

Morning Means End of Night

Morning Means End of Night
K. JUNGA,

View at Dawn

View at Dawn
K.JUNGA 2 ,18-12-14

Early Morning Freshness

Early Morning Freshness
K.JUNGA, 18-12-14

What an eye opener early in the day?

What an eye opener early in the day?
View of 17-12-2014 from Terrace of V. Awas

Another view of full snow around Mt Kanchendzonga

Another view of full snow around  Mt Kanchendzonga
17-12-2014

Magnificent view after bone chilling night

Magnificent view after bone chilling night
17-12-2014

Beauty of Kachendzonga after a cold night

Beauty of Kachendzonga after a cold night
Vidhayak Awas Gangtok

Amazing charm of Green Orchid

Amazing charm of Green Orchid
HMI Darjeeling

Green Orchid

Green Orchid
HMI DARJEELING (13-11-14)

Bell Flower in full bloom

Bell Flower in full bloom

Yellow Orchid

Yellow Orchid
Dec 14 Circuit House

View of Kanchendzonga always inspires

View of Kanchendzonga always inspires
Vidhayak Aawas Gangtok

Cherry Blossom

Cherry Blossom
November 14 Ganesh Tok Gangtok

What a view after getting up ?

What a view after getting up ?
B-1 Vidhayak Aawas Gangtok

Chanda Mama looking at Kanchendzonga

Chanda Mama looking at Kanchendzonga
11-11-2014 VIP COLONY

Red Rose

Red Rose
Gangtok

Cranes having Gala Time

Cranes having Gala Time
Tigaon, Faridabad (2nd Oct 14)

Yes I am from Faridabad

Yes I am from Faridabad
Tiny, Beautiful Bird at NTPC, Ballabgarh (29.9.14)

Water Vital for Life

Water Vital for Life
Awesome view of Teesta near Kalijhora

Yes I had a Bath

Yes I had a Bath
Gladiola at 6200 ft.

Soothing Morning View

Soothing Morning View
Mt. Khangchendzonga from C.House (April, 14)

Natural Yellow Fascinates

Natural Yellow Fascinates
Gangtok (April, 2014)

Flowery Bell ?

Flowery Bell ?
Circuit House (May 14)

Riot of Colour in Monsoon

Riot of Colour in Monsoon
Circuit House, Gangtok(May 14)

Blushing orange

Blushing orange
Circuit House Gangtok (May 14)

Magnificent Taj

Magnificent Taj
Sept 2013

I can lift Taj Mahal

I can lift Taj Mahal
Taj Mahal,Sept end 2013

Natural fan to beat the heat

Natural fan to beat the heat
India Gate (24.08.14)

Engineering Marvel

Engineering Marvel
Coronation Bridge (22.08.2014)

Cascading water, soothing to eyes

Cascading water, soothing to eyes
Scene near Teesta Baazar (22.8.14)

Teesta attracts at every bend

Teesta attracts at every bend
16.7.2014

Monkey jump

Monkey jump
Teesta River, Birik(22.8.14)

Onset of Night

Onset of Night
Qutub,Sept.13

Qutub,Dusk Scene

Qutub,Dusk Scene
Sept.13

Together we take a Plunge

Together we take a Plunge
Clean Calicut Beach, Feb-2013

Setting Sun, always soothing

Setting Sun, always soothing
Dusk at a Gaya village(15.5.13)

Green Paradise in Concrete Jungle

Green Paradise in Concrete Jungle
Lake surrounding Purana Quila(20.10.13)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

LIFE IN A SLOW MOTION

It is often said -“slow and steady wins the race”. Being alert and active also pays. It can be a decisive key to success, but, maybe, in the short run. Any action aimed to achieve long run targets should, have a correct balance of effort and commitment or else life becomes worthless, if not meaningless.

Many times down the history, it has been observed that taking a break or diverting from the main line proves productive. Even a thought along these lines has the propensity to provide necessary solace. With such a resolve, an attempt is being made to remember a recent anecdote concerning a popular means of transport that not only binds but also unites India.

I begin with the premise that too much of air travel followed by occasional journeys by fast moving trains in the artificial and air-conditioned settings had got into my nerves. An opportunity to avail of movement in a slow motion, therefore, turned out to be not only educative but it also had definite shades of a potential eye-opener. At the end of the day, one gained, recovered, felt satisfied as also rejuvenated.

When I got into the historic Darjeeling Mail in the evening of 7th July at the NJP station, the train was very much on time. Subsequently, it became ‘behind schedule’ by forty five minutes. One felt rather happy as the train was originally to reach my intended destination of Burdwan at the odd time of 4.00 hours. Rather isolated yet congenial atmosphere inside the A.C. compartment led to a deep slumber of roughly four and a half hours.

While I was in the process of attending a call of nature at the unearthly hour of 3.15, the silence of the fast moving train was suddenly broken by the desperate utterances of a middle aged Sardar Upjit Singh, who seemed to have over slept and missed, in the process, getting down at Malda between 2 to 2.30 hours. I could do nothing except to sympathise with him. Apparently, his business fatigue during the course of the previous day had taken its toll. He had, perhaps unknowingly begun cherishing life in a slow motion, some thing, I too had aspired for long.

We extend a helping hand to each other while getting down at Burdwan at dawn. My immediate hunch was to look for a connecting train for Dhanbad/Gomoh/Kodarma. Upjit’s immediate priority, however, was to move as fast as possible in the reverse direction. On getting the desired information I began pulling my bag towards the ticket counter on the rear side of the Platform no. 1. The ‘Maldavian’ Sardarji, however, appeared lost in the partial darkness of now crowded Platform No. 6, perhaps, not to surface again.

An irritating standing posture of twenty minutes in a que under somewhat unhygienic conditions, ensured me a ticket for Gomoh on payment of Rs. 28 only as compared to Rs. 400, I had paid for the preceding journey. Once again I dragged and lifted my bags to Platform No.3 and began my imminent wait in a slow and certain manner for the Shuttle scheduled to depart for Asansole at fifteen past five hours. In view of the fact that I had brushed my teeth inside the clean bathroom of Darjeeling Mail, I richly deserved a steaming hot Rs. 3 a cup of boiled C.T.C. tea. Some cookies packed generously by Dawney gave me the much needed company. I did doze off a couple of times while glancing through the morning Kolkata edition of the Times of India. I also learnt a bit about the glitterati of the ‘den’ of the Bhadra-Lok and the Babu Moshais.

Compared to the railway stations one had seen in the recent past, this one looked spic and span. The ramp connecting the platforms was a welcome development. It once again strengthened my resolve in the dictum “slow and steady wins the race”

Passengers in general showed exemplary behaviour when the daily Shuttle arrived at the scheduled time. Hardly any one ran helter skelter. Adequate time was available to refill drinking water bottles and procure pouches of Uncle Chipps, Kurkure or Lays to take care of the immediate needs of the tiny tots and the elderly alike. It was after a long gap that I was bestowed with an opportunity to avail of a short distance daily train having robust wooden seats. The non-A.C. compartment, in addition, had sufficient space on the racks above.

In no time, the train began moving. The view of green paddy fields having Palm, Mango and Pipal trees here and there, looked very soothing even to my sleepy eyes. My drowsy appearance received a lift on suddenly spotting the glory of the rising sun at the end of the horizon. It was akin to dark pink sight of the colour of a Flamingo which got transformed into a light pink, irresistible colour in a matter of seconds. The scenario was so pleasing that I desired to have a correct mix of the feeling it from within as also to capture the wonderful spectacle into my tiny Firang camera. A couple of memorable shots were possible primarily due to slow movement of train. I may confess honestly that I received unavoidable set back between the stations of Talit and Khana when the all pervading and unassailable monarch of the day (an ultimate source of all energies) played hide and seek in view of occasional emergence of the houses, trees and electric poles.

My photographic forays bore a distinct comparison with a similar encounter with the Sun God when I saw him emerging at Taki (North 24 Parganas) from the Bangladesh side of Ichhamati river in the last week of April 2009. Needless to say, I am lost, invariably immersed and flabbergasted when exposed to such super natural settings.

I give myself a break to swallow a tablet and a capsule prescribed to regulate my ‘jumping’ heart and fluctuating B.P.. At Galsi Station (5.45 hours) an old couple make a quiet entry. Their innocent looks appeal to me. As a matter of courtesy I shift my bag so as to make them comfortable. My inquiry reveals that the old man by the name of Bamkin Chandra Chattopadhyay was to get down at Paraj Station (a 20 minute journey) while Konkana Sen Mukhopadyay, his decently dressed life partner was to continue upto Mankar. Latter was visiting her daughter who had recently become a proud mother of a chubby male child.

It further transpired that the public transport system in the area was available at cheaper rates but a journey by a train was considered more comfortable, relatively cheaper and was devoid of the Goondas and the Dadas who regularly throng the dirty and congested bus stands. Further, possibility of a theft and harassment was also less in the Shuttle, remarked a bubbly and youthful Aparna Sen before detraining in a 'filmy' style at Managarh.

On completion of an hour of a slow and congenial journey, the train touched the crowded platform of Rajbandh. A sizeable number of passengers pushed themselves into the compartment even though it was full to capacity by conventional standards. Nevertheless, the whole experience was becoming lively as I managed to pick up a tale or two concerning the establishment of Durgapur Steel Plant, located close by. Such ‘temples’ of modern and resurgent India set up in the Fifties of the Twentieth Century were the brainchild of a sanguine and dynamic Pandit Nehru.

A group of young and cheerful college students who supplement the account of Durgapur, nonetheless, reflect rather low and reasonable ambitions about their future. It was, perhaps, in direct contradiction to the tall and ambitious claims about the successful implementation of the land reforms and building of basic infrastructure in these green central portions of an intellectually inclined province of West Bengal. The story pertaining to their sweet and sour experiences, desires and expectations, however, comes to an abrupt end when half of the group gets down at Waria station, while the rest leave at Andal, close to 7.00 hours.

In the meanwhile, I divert my attention to catch a view of the moving train from outside when I notice a bend in the alignment. We are getting closer to Kali Pahari. I now notice that Sun has moved further up. It was no longer pink and soothing, rather it was hot and blazing. The gradual reduction in the number of passengers inside the bogie too gave an impression that our imminent destination of Asansole was to be reached in a matter of seconds. Sharp at 7.15 hours we manage to touch the Platform Number 3 of Asansole. Like at Burdwan, there was no hue and cry. Decent and polite behaviour on the part of poor looking passengers amply reflected the richness and magnanimity of their hearts. A few of them lend hand willingly when I attempt to lift my bags.

In retrospect, the whole journey was slow but rewarding. It refreshed and enriched as well. While carefully putting a piece of crisp Son Papdi into my hungry mouth, I begin preparing for the next part of journey by another slow motion, yet, lively Burdwan-Hatia Passenger. It is raining cats and dog when I make myself comfortable on an empty bench of the platform.Instead of exclaiming 'Oh it is raining!', I am prompted to utter- 'Aah, it is raining!'. This, perhaps, sums up my spirit.

2 comments:

ankur said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ankur said...

Respected Uncle,
I read your story...which was quite entertaining as well as interesting!But I don't really think or actually believe that 'slow and steady wins the race' in today's fast moving world.A person needs to take decisions fast,think practically and make good judgment taking into account all the pros and cons.Considering the competition we all are exposed to there's no room for error or delay.I would like to conclude by pointing that the sardarji 'Upjit Singh' in your story had to afterall move in the reverse direction to compensate for oversleeping!In today's cut throat competitive world only one thing is true...'Jo sovat hai vo khovat hai'('the person who is sleeping is the one who is losing)!