The 54 Hour Journey - Part 2

Monday, January 11, 2010 Dr. Vishaal Bhat 0 Comments

The next afternoon was when we had booked our return tickets. as it happened, though we started from Rajendra nagar with ample time, we had problems with the transport and had to hurry a bit in the end to make it by 3:30 pm. We were a bit worried, but, managed to board the train with minutes to spare. We were very much relieved but when the train refused even after the scheduled departure time we started wondering whether we had boarded the right train. At 4:00 pm the train had not yet started and we started wondering what the problem was.

Announcements were being made that a goods train had derailed near Palwal (A halt on the outskirts of Delhi) and was the reason for the delay in our departure. At 4:30 we finally began moving,but, in the opposite direction. There were no announcements or explanations as to what was happening. trust the Indian Railways not to explain anything to its passengers.

After a slow chug we reached New Delhi railway station at around 5:15 pm and again the train came to a halt. We were still thinking that we would be parked here for the time being so that the congestion at Hazrat Nizamuddin could be eased. We believed that in an hour or so we would be leaving. We had snacks on the platform and decided that the Pantry on the Goa express was better . We spent almost an hour and a half and almost gave up on the train leaving Delhi the same day. (Unknown to us the Sampark Kranti Karnataka Express had left at 5:30 pm, its normal time.)

We should have been in Agra by 6:30 pm but on that day it was not to be. Finally at 7:00 pm we started moving,but, again int the opposite direction. there was still no information about the delay and the direction our journey was taking us. As we traveled further North by North-East we passed the vast slums that form the boundary separating Delhi form Ghaziabad. and then we came across Delhi's largest sewer - The Yamuna. One look at it made me wonder why it is still called a river.

It was almost 8 pm by the time we crossed into U.P. and i was tired. So after dinner i bunked down and fell into a deep slumber. The night was uneventful.