Sunday, January 24, 2010

17th January 2010

Time: 12 Noon Okay, so Here I am: in a purple walled room, in the Hotel Dhwani Palace, Drugstore Wali Gali, Paharganj, New Delhi. I couldn't write during the rest of the journey, because my pen (the only one I found in my bag) ran out of ink. I reached Delhi at 9:30am. My longest journey, on train, so far. At night, I had opened the train door, and seen the fog: it was dense, and right there, right beside me. It was thrilling! I had started the visible exhalation thing since Mughal Sarai. The sun came out at 12 noon, and disappeared by 3pm. Fog all day. Awesome dense fog. I can't see a thing outside my window, so I can't blame Mr. Driver for running the train so slowly. I was wrong about fog lasting for less than six hours. As I just said, it's fog-less, for less than three hours. I whiled the time away on the train, mostly by sleeping, and listening to the conversations of a mother and her 6-year-old son, travelling alone. The mother sounded very much like my own: both in positive and negative ways. The part I remember most clearly was: Son: Mummy, have you ever seen a human-ghost? Mum: Humans are ghosts, boy! Son: No, I mean human ghosts! Not normal ghosts! Mum: There are no ghosts at all, son. All ghosts are human beings, in reality. They make us believe that they are ghosts, to scare us, so that they can fulfill their own motives. I recalled an exactly similar conversation that I'd had with my Mum, years ago, on the from Durgapur to Kolkata, alone, with each other. Aaah, I missed my Mum, right then, but I was scared to call her up. My fears were nullified when Mum called me herself, today morning, and told me that Dad has informed her that I'm on the way to Delhi. She sounded abnormally calm. I asked her whether she was pretending to be calm, or was she actually unruffled by the news of my sudden departure! She replied that she was pretending, with a laugh! Anyway, I took some great pictures on the way, with my poor camera. Two of them were striking ones, in terms of "looks". :P One, while crossing the Pre-Allahabad Ganges. Amidst the fog, I could discern a miniature 2nd Hoogly Bridge, beside the bridge on which our train was stuck. My Corby lenses couldn't see them, though. The second was at a station called Maripat, today morning. An empty platform, with green grass son it, an old-fashioned black wooden over-bridge. And far across, amidst he dense white mist, tall evergreen trees. For a moment I thought we have left he plains! The whole fog thing is awesome. The cold factor is awesome. At Mughal Sarai, yesterday morning, I recalled the last time I'd experienced such low temperatures: way back in the winters of Classes 2 and 3, at Durgapur. Thanks to global warming, winters haven't been that cold and foggy since Class 4! When the train stopped at Aligarh, at 1-1:30am last night, the platform, right beside the door, right below the footstand, couldn't be seen. It was like a cold, watery smoke had blocked everything from view. And I realsied I have never experienced this! Never. When I breathed out, the air came out in such huge puffs, that I thought I must be smoking a cigarette! Smoking a cigarette was tough at a point! My mouth and wind-pie were too frozen to differentiate normal inhaled air, and tobacco-flavored inhaled air. And the "exhaled air" that I could see, didn't help too. I had my nerves to tell me that I have had tow puffs! Anyway, I've wasted a lot of time, watching the television in this wonderful hotel. Staying alone in a hotel, that's again, a first time, and more importantly, a ten-year-old dream come true. I should have named this post "Purple in Paharganj", but I don't want the significant colour to be significant at all. I can see a good sign already: in all my hourly naps on the train, I had dreams, but never one with the "disturbance"! Last night though, I had a strange dream: a Muslim guy was murdering me, because I had lied to him that I was a Muslim. I had good intentions, but he thought I meant trouble. I got murdered in my dream. I'll go out now. I'm starving.

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