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Old 11th October 2010, 02:07   #76
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All train journeys are memorable for me. I am fascinated with trains. And I love specially the ones which i did alone on long routes. Did quite a few of them even since I was 15. It used to be mostly sleeper class and AC/first class when with family courtesy LTC. Can't thank dad enough to take us at so many places. Did longest of indian rail routes during those days. To cut it short, I once faked an interview to happen in an institute in thiruvananthpuram just to be able to travel alone for an about 3 days journey in Kerla express.

Incidently my worst one was a short but scary one. I had recently settled in delhi and there was a new train that got launched between nizamuddin and bhopal. Time from nizamuddin at about 10 in the night reaching jhansi at about 4 in the morning. This was a very new train and almost never booked to capacity. You can just buy a ticket, go to the tte and get a birth alloted to you on board. I had to travel one day, unplanned, something urgent came up and i came to know when i reached my flat in the evening. I did not have much money with me as it was into last 2 days of the month. Ah, those days .

ATM's (I had some in my account) between my place and station were far and few (still early days in 2000 for atm's) and I in any case did not need much money. about a 100 Rs. for ticket and another 60 odd for reservation. At 4 in the morning i will be home. So i did not bother nor did my flat mate who came to drop me off. Since there was still some time for the train, we had a couple of "thou-that-shall-not-be-named" and food and yours truly paid despite of not so favorable circumstrances. In the end i was left with 200 buks when I went to buy the ticket.

Ticket bought and i boarded the train. Within half an hour the tte came and i got myself a birth and slept off. A day of hard work, thou-that-shall-not-be-named and very sumptuous food at that new restaurant that opened up (cumsum i guess) at station were the culprit.

I woke up to find the train gaining speed, i looked out of the window and gosh.. it's jhansi station it was leaving. I rushed to the gate, but by the time i reached the gate it gained enough speed for me to decide aginst jumping.

I asked a fellow passenger which was the next stop and i was told its Bina. I quickly did a back of the envelope calculation and found out that i have about Rs. 45 left with me and ticket should cost somewhere between 45 to 55 from bina to jhansi. But my bigger worry was, what if some tte come and asks me for a ticket between jhansi and bina. I spent a couple of very nervous hours it takes to reach bina.

it halted.. stayed there for its scheduled duration.. and than chugged along.. it was then when i got off the train and walked very casually to show as if i wasnt on the train. Next mission, ticket back to jhansi. And my fears came true when i was told its 53 actually. I was short by 8 rupees

To add to it, i did not have a cell phone then and no way with already short on money i could have called up from a pay phone to tell my parents what had happened as obviously they would be very worried by now.

The next train was after about 30 minutes and i thought i have only three options. Get on the train without ticket and face whatever comes, two sell some of whatever i had to someone willing to buy it or "beg" someone and arrange those 8 invaluable bucks. lol..

i was undecided till they announced the arrival of the train. And when i could see train moving in from far. I got up, reached the station master and told him what happened and asked him for advise. That old fellow looked at me.. a number of times.. as if trying to assess what i was upto (when i first watched that shahid kareena flick where kareena missed her train on some station and met the station master i was in splits.. the whole thing went through my mind again and everybody else there except my wife in that theatre who knew what i was upto thought what a jerk i am .. what was in the scene to laugh out so loud).

Any ways, he asked me for my 45 bucks added another 8 and sent one of his boys to buy me a ticket and offered me a cup of tea which I gladly accepted. What followed after then and till his guy came back with ticket was the reason i was luaghing watching this flick, "jab we met". This gentleman cursed the whole internet banking in those 10 minutes and told me why younger generation like me will not realise the value or money and "currency" in particualar. I only nodded and kept myself looking as obidient as i possibly could be.

Train came along, I hoped in and reached home at about 11 to a parents who were almost calling the police station.

PS - The best/worst part was, my parents called up my flat mate (we are child hood friends by the way) in the morning and he thought I might have lied to him and may be i was off to visit my then girl friend (now wife), so to save me he said "is it, I dont know where has he gone I came home very late yesterday and i thought he may have stayed back at some friends place" . Love my friends
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Old 11th October 2010, 07:06   #77
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That was one hell of a story! My friend while travelling from Jhansi to Agra used to hop on to any train any superfast and get down at Agra.

He did the same once only to realize later that the train was TN and would not stop at Agra! I was good he realized before Gwalior and got off there to catch another one!

Later we were imagining he standing at the door waiting for the train to stop at the Agra platform and instead the train gaining speed !


PS: Since you mentioned Bina, I have spent "hours" at Bina waiting for GT express. Those were the days!

Last edited by ampere : 11th October 2010 at 07:07.
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Old 11th October 2010, 09:56   #78
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New Novice, you have reminded me of a train journey I did in 2008.

I was in Bhopal on work in June 2008 for a week. I had finished my work by the end of the week and was free on saturday. I thought why not spend the day by going to Sanchi. I was alone and I enquired about how to go to Sanchi (around 60 kms from Bhopal). I was told that train as the best option.

According to my plan, I would take the Amritsar Express from Bhopal Jn which would come at 3.15 pm and reach Sanchi at 3.45 pm. I woukd roam around Sanchi for the next hour or two and would take another evening train back to Bhopal (I don't remember the time and train)

That afternoon, in the Bhopal railway station I noticed that I had only Rs. 500 in my pocket. I was too lazy to go to the ATM and thought I could make do with the 500. I bought a 2S ticket to Sanchi which cost around Rs. 35-40 (IIRC). There was a huge crowd at the station. The train arrived a little late and as soon as it stopped, there was a mad rush for the seats.

In the rush, I got on to a sleeper compartment, which was almost empty, along with most others in the station. The train started and soon picked up good pace. I was enjoying the sights and sounds in a train in Central India and this was the first time for me in this region. When the train was around 5-10 kms from Sanchi, the Ticket collector appeared in the compartment and started checking tickets. I was not bothered because I thought I had a valid ticket.

The TC, then explained to me that I carried a 2S and that I had to pay a fine for getting on to the wrong compartment. Shocked, I asked him how much the fine was and he replied coolly, "Aap Rs. 350 dena padega".

I paid him the fine and was left with only Rs. 100 in the pocket. And the irony is that I would have missed the TC if he had come 5 mins late. Just as soon as the TC gave me the receipt, the train pulled into Sanchi Station and I got down.

With only Rs. 100 in the pocket I contemplated getting back on the next train and go back to Bhopal. There wasn't even an ATM in Sanchi. I sat sown near a tea shop and was thinking what to do. I had come so far and would have to return without seeing the famous stupas in Sanchi. Then, I enquired with an tea shop owner on how much it would cost to get back to Bhopal in a bus. He said it could be around Rs. 30 or so. Again I asked him, how much would an autowallah ask to take me to the Stupas. He said Rs. 70. Then I talked to an auto driver and bargained a little and got it down to Rs.50.

Now the trip was back on. I would take the auto-tour of Sanchi and get back to Bhopal by bus or by the next train which was at around 7.30 pm (IIRC).
So, I happily went to the stupas and got on to a mini bus which slowly reached Bhopal at around 7.30 pm and with 10 Rs still in my pocket (I had spent another 10 bucks in the tea shop)

Last edited by addyhemmige : 11th October 2010 at 09:58.
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Old 11th October 2010, 10:31   #79
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Originally Posted by New.Novice View Post
All train journeys are memorable for me. I am fascinated with trains. And I love specially the ones which i did alone on long routes. Did quite a few of them even since I was 15. It used to be mostly sleeper class and AC/first class when with family courtesy LTC. Can't thank dad enough to take us at so many places. Did longest of indian rail routes during those days. To cut it short, I once faked an interview to happen in an institute in thiruvananthpuram just to be able to travel alone for an about 3 days journey in Kerla express.
Ha..Ha.. :-)

Was the train Habibganj (Bhopal Exp) by any chance? My wife is from Jhansi and before marriage, when I used to go to meet her, I too overslept once on this train and got down at Bina :-)

Nitin

Last edited by Technocrat : 10th March 2012 at 02:50. Reason: Edited long quoted post to short, thanks
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Old 11th October 2010, 11:44   #80
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Lot many "Bina" connections. I used to take the passenger from Kota to come down to Bina and then take GT for South. Waiting in that station from 3PM to 2AM was nothing sort of an ordeal.

But in that process I used spot all the "famed" superstar (superfast) trains.
KK/AP/Kerala. TN used to come later than GT.

Addy I used to spot the Sanchi stupas many a time when on train, but never went there.
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Old 11th October 2010, 12:14   #81
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Ha..Ha.. :-)

Was the train Habibganj (Bhopal Exp) by any chance? My wife is from Jhansi and before marriage, when I used to go to meet her, I too overslept once on this train and got down at Bina :-)

Nitin
Yes Nitin, it was indeed habibganj express. You know, almost the whole coach used to get empty at Jhansi and I thought as always, either someone will wake me up while getting down or I will wake others if I am up. But irony had something else in store for me that day. But ever since, I tuck away at least a 1000 rupees somewhere in my luggage whenever I travel now.

Wow, Jhansi connection. Good to know that pal. You've been there yet?
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Old 11th October 2010, 12:34   #82
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One of my most memorable train journey happened in 1990. I was on my first official tour and had to return to Chennai from Mumbai with some samples and my journey date would depend on the samples getting ready. The mandate from office was , some how reach Chennai by any available mode of transport. It was before advent of private airlines and IA ruled the skies with just 2 or 3 daily flights to Chennai and all were full for the next few days.

Railway PRS systems had just started and only major stations had computerised booking. A friend suggested that I can try at Thane which was still under manual quota system. I filled out the form and the counter clerk confirmed the availability and handed over the ticket (card type) with coach & berth no by the Chennai exp which leaves Dadar at 7.50 pm (present day 2164). Since the quota is from Thane, the ticket was from Kalyan to Chennai. I went the Dadar station and the entire coach was quota coach. The chart simply showed berth 1 to 25 as Thane quota and rest as Kalyan quota with no names. Bought a ticket for Dadar - Kalyan leg and took my seat. The TTE came and being the only occupant of coach chatted for a few minutes , wrote down the ticket no & name against the berth and left. All was well till Kalyan when the entire coach got filled and there was this gentleman asking me to vacate since it was his seat. The TTE came looked at both tickets and started cursing the Thane clerk for issuing the same berth for two persons. The drama went on for a few minutes when the TTE discovered that the date of my journey was correct but not the month. I had been booked for the same date but for the next month. The train was full and the TTE asked me to get down at the next station (Karjat).

After much pleading, he asked me to get a ticket from the counter when the train stops at Karjat, since I was technically without a ticket.The train has a 10 min halt at Karjat for banker attachement and while I got the tickets, the TTE enquired with other TTEs for a vacant berth but all classes were full.

The TTE allowed me travel in the coach and told me that I could use a berth reserved for police from Pune after getting the consent of the police constable boarding at Pune. After taking care of the constable, I was allowed to sleep in his berth from Pune but my comfort was short lived. I was rudely woken up at Sholapur since an higher offical was boarding at there and I was asked not only vacate the berth but also the reserved coach. I travelled from Sholapur to Wadi in an unreseved coach standing near the toilet. As I got down at Wadi to stretch my limbs, I saw a family of 5 getting down from the 2 AC coach and no one boarded. Quickly rushed to TTE who alloted a berth in 2 AC after collecting the excess fare.

Slept all the way to Chennai.
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Old 11th October 2010, 12:43   #83
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Yes Nitin, it was indeed habibganj express. You know, almost the whole coach used to get empty at Jhansi and I thought as always, either someone will wake me up while getting down or I will wake others if I am up. But irony had something else in store for me that day. But ever since, I tuck away at least a 1000 rupees somewhere in my luggage whenever I travel now.

Wow, Jhansi connection. Good to know that pal. You've been there yet?
Nowadays, it's not the same. Habibganj always runs full and it's well nigh impossible to get a reservation. BTW, do you know, it is the fastest non-shatabdi, non-rajdhani train :-)

I was in Jhansi in June, and will be there for a week in Feb (bro-in-law's wedding). Let's meet if you are there at that time. (in-laws live in Veernagana Nagar - opposite Bundelkhand University, and adjacent to Medical College).

Cheers

Nitin
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Old 9th March 2012, 17:19   #84
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Bumping an old thread.

Going through each post brings back lots of wonderful memories.

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Delh-South was always fun, because you crossed so many rivers and tunnels. The one at Hoshangabad, where trains crosses a tunnel and lands on to the bridge still gives me goosebumps, when ever I think about it. So is the big one at Vijayawada on Krishna (For a long I could not see this as the trains mostly them at night TN/GT). I got my first view when I travelled on Kerala.
The one on Godavari near Rajahmundry also gives the goosebumps! Have very fond memories of traveling in the Coromandel Express, for close to 9 years, from Vizag to Chennai and back when i was a kid.

Whether it was a marriage/function/summer vacation at my native in TN, we used to take the Coromandel which used to reach Vizag at 4:00 AM from Howrah. Each journey used to be a different experience. You start bonding with your co-passengers even though it was just a 16-17 hour journey. Such a thing can happen only on our Railways!

Miss the Chennai Central Railway Station, Higginbothams and the Waiting lounge in the 1st floor

Apart from the Coromandel, i loved the journey on the train from Vizag to Araku/Borra Caves. Got a chance to go on this train when we were in our 10th Standard and our school decided to take us on a 2 day trip to Araku Valley. The entire compartment was filled with us (around 50 kids and teachers) and whenever the train used to traverse through the tunnels enroute, we kept screaming like crazy!
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Old 9th March 2012, 17:33   #85
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The one on Godavari near Rajahmundry also gives the goosebumps! Have very fond memories of traveling in the Coromandel Express, for close to 9 years, from Vizag to Chennai and back when i was a kid.
Coromandel is a classy train. I traveled once from Vijaywada to Howrah and back (first class!, thanks my dad's LTC).

The other thing I also noted was that this train ran non-stop from Vijaywada to Chennai
(6 hours approx). Very few trains of that era match such timings (leaving apart Rajdhani).
TN and I think Satavahana express have similar timings.

In fact TN in that mode was very very fast and puntual. (I thnk it still is)
Delhi-Jhansi-Bhopal-Nagpur-Ballarshah-Vijaywada-Chennai.

They later added more stops: Gwalior, Itarsi, Warangal etc.
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Old 9th March 2012, 17:38   #86
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My worst Train journey has always been & will always be travelling from Malad to Churchgate (or any other station) in Local Trains of Mumbai. This becomes even more troublesome when I have to change over at Dadar. I have never quite understood why there is steady flow (or force) of people emerging at Dadar station.

My most memorable Train Journey would be from Munich (Germany) to Salzburg (Austria) in 2 hours flat. This was in January 2011. I was pretty surprised by the fact that we crossed a country border & there was no check for security or passport. Also as it was winter season, the view outside was simply spectacular.

In India my best train journey would be Mumbai - Kolkatta by Duranto Train. It had only four technical stops between distance of 2000 kms. Also I have always enjoyed travelling in Mumbai - Delhi Rajdhani Express, which I feel is better way of reaching New Delhi from Mumbai as compared to late night / early morning flights.

My worst Tain journey would be 32 hours travel from Coimbatore to Mumbai, where one is presented with constant attack of Salesmen, beggers, dirty toilets, etc.

Thanks,
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Old 9th March 2012, 18:50   #87
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Well, this was in the 90s when I was studying in Ranchi and my parents were in Mumbai. I have had several memorable train journeys between Ranchi and Mumbai of which I will talk about 3 of them in particular. In those days, there were no direct trains - you could either get to Jamshedpur or Rourkela and have one of three train options between Kolkata and Mumbai (if I remember right, Geetanjali Exp, Howrah Mail, and Howrah-Kurla Express in decreasing order of importance accorded to them by the Indian Railways) as they passed through both cities.

We had another option - there was a train between Bokaro and Allepey passing through Ranchi which used to have two bogies for Mumbai, which would be disconnected in Rourkela and attached to the Howrah-Kurla Express. Both the Bokaro-Allepey and Howrah-Kurla express were legendary in their tardiness, unpredictability, and dilapidated condition of the bogies.

Journey 1. It Rains Inside

I used to love the upper berths but stopped using them after this wonderful experience I had once during the monsoon. Had settled down on my bunk to sleep, and realized that I was cold and wet and got up with a rude shock. When I got out of my daze, realized that copious quantities of water was trickling through the roof of the coach, and everyone had vacated the top berths due to the same. You could not put your feet on the ground as well, since the entire floor was a pool of water. A most interesting 30 hours were spent trying not to be a fish.

Journey 2. Forest Adventure

The section between Rourkela and Ranchi used to be a 4 hour, single track journey through some of the most beautiful parts of the Chottanagpur Plateau and forests, and it was always a pleasure to cross this section, dotted by innumerable small stations, where one would stop if another train was coming the other way. These stations would have fruit vendors. Once, when we were on the return leg to Ranchi, we were told that some fishplates have been stolen from the tracks in front of us, and they were waiting for a relief train to come and repair the same. This was the beginning of a 8 hour wait at a wayside station, and what a time it was. The entire village came to sell produce to the people in the train. A number of enterprising people also went to the nearby village well to have a bath as this was already close to a 48 hour journey. All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable experience.

Journey 3. Unrecognizable!!!

These used to the times of unrest and uncertainty too. I remember once getting an AC IInd class ticket from my father as a treat to travel between Jamshedpur and Mumbai in Geetanjali express. For those of us who have frequented the eastern part of our country, the Geetanjali was better than the Rajdhani, a train on which stories are written and poems are recited. It used to have only one stop in every state, and was a wonderful train. Alas, my sojourn in AC comfort was not to be. Geetanjali was cancelled on that date, and so was Howrah Mail. Got into the only option, Howrah Kurla express in the general compartment and did not sit down till Nagpur, sigh!!! At Nagpur, we were told that the direct route to Mumbai was closed, and the train will take a longer and deviating route. To cut a long story short, I reached home 48 hours later than when I was supposed to reach (had already informed parents that I will try and come as how destiny permits). It was afternoon and the flats in which my parents lived did not switch on the landing lights at the main door, and it was dark there. I pressed the doorbell, and my mom opened and saw a creature that was dusty with soot from top to bottom carrying two bags, and it took her a few seconds to realize that it was not a salesman or a rag-picker. We all had a good laugh thereafter.

There are many more such memorable journeys on this sector.

Last edited by root : 9th March 2012 at 18:52. Reason: Editing tags
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Old 9th March 2012, 19:49   #88
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Well, this was in the 90s when I was studying in Ranchi and my parents were in Mumbai.
Good to find someone who has studied in Ranchi, which school did you study in, and where did you live ? I studied in Khunti.

Quote:
We had another option - there was a train between Bokaro and Allepey passing through Ranchi which used to have two bogies for Mumbai, which would be disconnected in Rourkela and attached to the Howrah-Kurla Express.
This train still exists, IIRC the origin has been changed these days.

Quote:
Both the Bokaro-Allepey and Howrah-Kurla express were legendary in their tardiness, unpredictability, and dilapidated condition of the bogies.
Yeah, in fact there was a joke making rounds that Bokaro-Alleppey would stop if a passenger / bystander frantically waved his hand towards it.

Quote:
The section between Rourkela and Ranchi used to be a 4 hour, single track journey through some of the most beautiful parts of the Chottanagpur Plateau and forests, and it was always a pleasure to cross this section, dotted by innumerable small stations, where one would stop if another train was coming the other way. These stations would have fruit vendors.
Man, you have really brought back memories, do you remember this small station where all kinds of fruits were sold, I forgot.

Spike
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Old 9th March 2012, 21:51   #89
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Good to find someone who has studied in Ranchi, which school did you study in, and where did you live ? I studied in Khunti.

Man, you have really brought back memories, do you remember this small station where all kinds of fruits were sold, I forgot.

Spike
Spike - in reverse order - the small station was Bano. I did my schooling from Guru Nanak, but this period was when I was doing engineering at NIFFT. :-)
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Old 30th March 2012, 21:51   #90
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Few facts of the train journey in Hong kong and Singapore. In the MRT services of both the countries you are not allowed to eat or chew or drink. The trains are clean. Every body was busy with their mobiles. Peak hours the trains are crowded like ours. Systematic entry and exit. Enjoy a picture of a compartment during peak hour and also a couple of pictures of the MRT of Hong kong.
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Your best and worst train journey experiences?-img_1386.jpg  

Your best and worst train journey experiences?-img_1379.jpg  

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