My eyes scour the place for a seat. But let’s face it – it’s rush hour. Millions of people take up this journey in this city, with the hope of earning their bread. It doesn’t matter who hails from where. It doesn’t matter what the profession is. Here, all were alike. Pensive passengers lost in translation. There’s no difference once you board this train - the train of hopes and possibilities.
I finally spot a place to sit. Once I land on the seat, all the other eyes focus on me and scan me from head to toe. Just like how a new animal entering an old territory is examined. I ignore the gazes and adjust myself in my seat. Even though it’s a short journey, every passing minute seems precious.
The stranger eyes return to whatever it is that they were doing prior to my entry. I feel relaxed as the spotlight is now off me. But my gaze starts its search among the crowd looking for answers behind every face.
She holds close to herself and looks out of the train. She finds the passing scenery cool and relaxing and hence decides to snooze a little. The book on her lap lies open and dog-eared on a page. She seems to be a student studying hard to accomplish in her exam. Maybe these few moments of siesta will help her focus better. I wish her an ‘All the best’ in my heart and look on for another story.
She seems rock hard on the surface what with the stern face and carefree look. She opens her bag and takes out a paper. Once she is done reading it, she folds it half way through. The upside down words read out – ‘Time Table for Half Yearly Examinations’ and I quickly figure out her profession. She snorts a breath and packs the sheet. As the train approaches the next station, she grabs her bags and vacates the seat.
My eyes fall on a married woman next who seems petite and scared. She twitches the handkerchief between her fingers as she looks out of the window. The cool breeze and the rain drops from outside seem to keep her amused but her eyes recite a different story. She wells up and swallows a lump in her throat. But neither I nor the others in the train are capable of unraveling the mystery in her life or the tears in her eyes.
The last woman I notice is a lot older than the others. She rotates the rosary beads in her hands and I quickly glance at her face. Her poise and tranquility make me envious. How can a person seem so happy? And then my eyes fall on her lap which holds a brochure for an old age home. Happiness does rely on the perspective of the beholder. She happily alights from the train and walks to her destination – either to help others or to help herself from her entire family.
As for me, my station arrives and I am ready to leave this small mobile world where everyone has a different story to recite and a different day to live through.
**This is just a recount of my experience while traveling by train. The above is a streak of my imagination.**
**Linking to the Ultimate Blog Challenge for July 2014 and BlogHer - NaBloPoMo**