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Saturday, May 9, 2009

the queue to hell and back....

A few days back ,i found myself a part of a huge line,snaking along to the end of the world.....at the anterior end of this line..was the road to escape..to the destination of our lives...at the posterior end..the burning coals and ravaged souls of HELL..
ok,teekh hain....hyperbole aside....

i was standing in a ticket line at my station...now,let me tell you,this station has been renovated recently..so you will find fans that work,clean spaces and crack-less glass panes behind which sit the railway employees in their spot less, clean, white shirts...punching out tickets for us,line to hell ,poor souls....

as usually people feel in the beginning of a day,i too felt all fresh and ready to face the day....and the best thing was i was on time,to be honest a little before time...

however when i reached the station,i had to take a few deep breaths to pacify myself..and pull my eyes which had gone to 4 times its size due to shock on seeing the line..back to size...

well,accepting my dues and cursing anything and everything i could think of,i settled into the line awaiting my chance to be redeemed...and my soul to be rescued...


my mind when into flashback mode,now,i have being using Mumbai's local trains for almost 5 years now,howmuch ever i crib about them,i am utterly in love with them and cannot think of a better mode of transport(another article will be dedicated to my adventures while travelling in the train).
generally,i am a railway pass holder,but i have stood in lines before in the same station for tickets..never had it ever taken so much time to punch out tickets...maybe,back at that time.the place was not clean or eye candy material,but at least there was some efficiency...
now,after renovation and many more ticket counters added to help more people(i don't know,where so many people come from...i believe in the concept of population explosion when i enter crowded stations)..efficiency instead of increasing has gone to the dogs.yea..there are many healthy ,rowdy dogs for company at stations...if you feel bored of standing in the line,you can howl in frustration they will amplify your voice...no need for any electrical circuits here....automatic amplifiers provided...

since i had nothing to do,apart from waiting(my headphones expired a few months back..sigh..sob),i ended up reading all laws,rules,regulations of railways printed around...after reading and analysing them,[i cannot help it,i am a scientist(or so..that is what my qualification says),i observe,i analyse,i try to either solve a problem ,or most of the time compound it...that is a scientist's birth right...]


well,back to analysis,i feel the most stupid rule the railway authorities could think of is passing out coupons,tickets and pass at the same counter,no..actually that is ok,what compounds it is the fact,for coupons and first class passes,people need not stand in line...

now imagine a person standing it this hell hole for a long time only to find people butting into the line in between,and his line,thus not moving anywhere...to top it,this humid ,hot climate is enough for frayed tempers to run into murderous rages and people getting into fist fights...especially since,the local Trains are used by many office going people...imagine,being late to office because you spent an hour in the ticket queue!!i mean,there are better ways to be late to office...

i wonder,when will someone realise to make separate counters for everything...especially when we have a separate counter for extension,which is hardly used...

funny,no counter for regularly used services,but railways can afford an employee for some almost deserted counter...

(now,for non-Mumbaites,let me tell you,the local trains in Mumbai is an adventure in itself...some other day,i will elaborate on this..now,just a rundown,on terms..
am sure you are well versed to tickets and pass..
coupons are a recent addition,where you just have to punch the required amount of coupons..as per the amount of your ticket...
extension is when you have a pass and need to extend your journey a few stations more than what your pass permits...)
by the time i reached the counter...45 minutes later..i was ready to break the glass pane with my heel and sucker punch the ticket vendor...

the whole fiasco,left me with a thought..how come we are so dysfunctional ,but still manage to function....

i had no time to analyse the thought..as i had to run a marathon over the over bridge...reach my required platform and also run along with my train before i could catch it..

well,that is life ..on a fast lane..or maybe..on a fast train....



12 comments:

arshat.chaudhary said...

poorane din yaad aa gaye yaar.. Stations suck re.. I hate travelling because of them. Imagine all this confusion inspite of cvm coupons and smart cards!!

iceprincess said...

@arshat.
:)
yea...stations are a pain.....esp d ticket counters..we r all heading for some doomsday..when ppl are gonna riot against tickets and stuff..
:)..but kuch bhi bol..apna train service ekdum jhakaas hain....

DPhatsez said...

oh bloody hell! Train ticket queues in mumbai!Nightmare.

Endhoru aashwaasam! Sydney-il yaathoru prashnavumilla Fully automatic :)

iceprincess said...

@DPhat
:)
yea..lucky u...
but,me love it all...atleast when it gives me something to write about...

BrownPhantom said...

I seriosuly can't figure it out, the ubiquitous truth : How come those who stay in Mumbai, love it noenetheless; cramped rooms, crowd, humid weather.
There are friends who have mograted to Bangalore which has excellend weather of course and spacious house (traffic is a bitch, but better than mumbai); but they still swear by Mumbai.

Have heard a few very interesting tales about the local trains in Mumbai; waiting for your stories :).

iceprincess said...

@brownphantom,
trust me...it is like this...
u dont have a choice abt the family ur born into...u love them unconditionally....it is something u dont learn..but know nonetheless...
pretty much the same abt our city....
there is sure something abt this place and its people.....
as 4 other cities..am sure..ppl there feel the same...
thanks for visiting....

Chronicwriter said...

one i was standing behind a guy in a queue... an old man tried to break in... i dint wanna allow him.. so i stood very close to the guy standing in front of me...

the guy who stood in front of me gave me a dirty stare... took me for a gay guy!!!

:(
chriz

iceprincess said...

@chriz..
LOL!
thank ur lucky stars..that the guy gave u only a dirty stare..and dint respond back..think if he were also gay!!!!
:)

varsha said...

hey i simply loved this blog!!!...not that i didn't like the earlier ones...but this connects more with ppl who have travelled in the trains, have withstood testing times at the ticket counters, been annoyed at the boorish looks of the counter guy..nonetheless u always feel nostalgic abt those testing moments when u read such articles...thanx for bringing back the memories of standing in long queues, cursing all sorts of ppl on the earth for the line nt moving ahead...n all other sweet nothings that was endured!!!

Kido said...

Ticket counters??? AAAAaaaagggghhh!!!

iceprincess said...

@kido
i know that sound...
:(

iceprincess said...

@varsha
yea..i know..somehow..brings back memories of innocent days...
:)