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Train-ed Romance

Central Station, Chennai
Train Number: 2601
Train Name: Mangalore Mail
Date & Time: 9 Feb, 8:15 p.m.
Destination: Kannur, Kerala

8.30 p.m.
I have just installed my Reliance data card, and believe me…it lives up to its Kar Lo Duniya Muthi Main line. I am traveling in the train from Chennai to Kannur and on the way responding to Ouchmytoe readers who have left their comments. If this isn`t awesome, what else could be?

8.31 p.m.
Ohhh…wait! There is a there is a pretty lady in seat number 13. I am in seat number 16 – the side upper berth and have a good view of her.

8.40 p.m.
Unfortunately, Rekha keeps calling me and asking questions like: ‘Do you miss me?” for which my replies have to be really measured. I don`t want the pretty lady to know that I am already married. Why should she be deprived of happiness just because Rekha got to me first? Why do men have to marry only once? Women…I can understand. But why men? Which brings us to the question of – what if men married many times and expected women to marry only once…we would need at least 2-3 times more women in this world than there are now. Perhaps, that`s why we are going by the 1:1 ratio.

8.50 p.m.
I notice the pretty lady is a Keralaite. She is talking in Malayalam. The language has never sounded sweeter. What is it with Tamilians and Malayalis? Why do they always fall in love?

9.00 p.m.
Oops! Who is that two-year-old kid sitting next to the pretty lady? Definitely not her son…..because I can see that the kid is wearing a frock, earrings and a bindi. Could she be her daughter? Perhaps. Let me wait till the kid opens her mouth – how will she address the pretty lady? Amma? Mummy? Amme? How long do I have to wait till the kid opens its mouth? Hope I don`t have to wait for five years. I did take that long to speak out for the first time. Some in my family thought I had Down`s syndrome while a few others put warm goat blood on my tongue so that I could talk sooner. I didn`t talk…but shouted because my uncle was standing on my toes. “Ouch my toe,” I remember saying.

9.20 p.m.
The pretty lady picks up water to drink. Hope that`s clean. One can never trust the Railway guys….they can be quite adulterous. I remember this married-with-two-kids station master neighbor of mine who had an affair going on with his colleague. He was quite adulterous.

9.21 p.m.
While tilting her head back to pour water into her gentle throat, she steals a glance at me. Our eyes meet, but I act out a there-is-a-speck-of-dust-in-my-eye thing and start banging on my keyboard. She perhaps thinks I am master software professional. She doesn`t know that I am using MS Word – the most basic of all softwares. While typing, I sometimes pause and look at the dirty fan…sometimes at the chain (the one used to stop the train)…sometimes at the windows…all this to make her feel that I am a great software professional who is coming up with something which would make Yahoo & Google look like also-rans.

9.30 p.m.
I see that she has got up and is correcting her clothes. Wonder why. Hope she isn`t eyeing the TTE. I can see the TTE checking our co-passenger`s tickets.

9.34 p.m.
The TTE leaves. The pretty lady walks towards the washbasin. We are sitting in 3rd AC…and the washrooms are only slightly better than what one would find in 2nd class compartments. But can I warn her? Would I be well within my rights? I hope she doesn`t go into the washrooms. She walks back and is looking at me this very moment. I smile. I can see that she doubts her ability to control herself in front of a handsome man. She just looks down and keeps walking.

9.37 p.m.
I have decided…once her parents sleep, I will get her phone number. Better still Yahoo ID.

9.40 p.m.
Found out that she is also going to Kannur….I had to get down and look at the reservation chart.

9.45 p.m.
They are switching off the lights. Why can`t people sleep with the lights on? I am staring into the dark. Can`t see anything. Wonder if she is also staring into the dark? Something that`s going against me is the fact that I remove my glasses while sleeping.

10 Feb, 10.24 a.m.
Couldn`t her phone number or Yahoo ID. In love with her though. We are reaching Kannur in five minutes.

10 Feb, 10.32 a.m.
We have reached Kannur. Her husband has come to pick her up. Glad I held myself last night – he is huge. Must be 6 feet 4 inches. At least a foot taller than I am.

10 Feb, 10.34 a.m.
Spotted Mr Chandrashekaran Nair – my father in law. He reminds me of my pregnant wife. Will be meeting Rekha in half an hour. Thinking of romantic sentences to say…lies don`t come that easily anymore.

Other Equally Good Reads

# Buffet dinner with ex-colleagues…
# Mirror, mirror on the wall
# Women – somebody TELL ME what they want
# Accepting gifts from relatives
# Inviting friends over

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