Posted by : RioZee Sunday, September 2, 2012

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 31; the thirty-first edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. The theme for the month is 'Strangers in the Night'


Friends, I am a T.T. always on the move. My work is a peculiar one, always interacting with versatile strangers, and if I start writing incidents that I encountered, it would fill volumes. 

Sometimes I used to get  frustrated beyond any perceivable limits and I would shut myself up in A.C. First class compartment for sometime, but that was a temporary solace. How much could I avoid the duty, after all I had to maintain harmony in the train I was entrusted to see up to the destination.

This day I am referring here had passed in sleep in the retiring room allotted for us at Howrah station. My body clock woke me at 7 p.m. I got up hurriedly and freshened myself up in full haste. Picking up the duty chart I progressed towards Doon express. My eyes caught glimpse of Ram Lal, fellow T.T., I always loathed. I never understood what revenge he was taking from me. My head started spinning, not again. Due to this rascal known man, I loved the nastiest stranger. None could be more horrific than this Monster.

I stealthily took refuge in pantry car of train, drank aspirin, and rested my head on the window sill.
Train started it's movement with whistling sound. A staff of railway, pounding on me heavily, blurted, " Thank God, Ramlal told me I  would find you here, six people are sitting at your seat no.7, give them seats. Before I could retort, he alighted the moving train.

I moved towards my seat, murmuring nosiest expletives for Ramlal
Train was full packed, very tough to accommodate R.A.C. passengers and Ramlal had nastily diverted complete nuisance on my neck. I gauzed these six nasty little strangers in the night from afar.

"How should I throw the bloody blooming nuts out".

I thought. Then Ramlal flashed in my mind. I could picturize him being fried in hell in hot boiling oils.
These strangers were nothing infront of him.
As I neared them, I heard their quarrel distinctly. One was hollering at top of his lungs at his companion.
" One small work I entrust you with and you can't do that even. If I just phone Di just now, the head of train would be rubbing nose on my these very shoes." what would Di say, when she comes to know I travelled on one seat with six people.

I was unaware what I was slowly getting into. Giving fresh curses to Ramlal, I tried to wade past my seat into the other side of compartment to check on the valid passengers. A loud voice made me turn back. 
"What took you so long to come in the compartment. All your salary is given by us. And you sit and enjoy. Passengers are dying of heat. Fan is not working."

I thought of Ramlal and tried to keep my head intact.

 "Sir, please, I am checking the compartment and coming to you." 

I had handled nastiest people, and I knew I had to bear him till Asansol only. Every minute passed and Asansol would be nearer.
My words "Please Sir" fell on him as ice. Beaming with pride, he retorted to his friends.
"See, he knows me also." murmuring in their ears
"now he will surely find some seats for us".

I knew beforehand the ruckus was for seat only, and I also knew I couldn't provide him anything. I couldn't throwaway valid ticketed passenger off the train for them. I started my checking.

A newlywed couple were seated comfortably. I understood immediately they must be heading to Mussoorie for their honeymoon. I sat down comfortably. I threw a feeler 

"heading to Mussorie dudes".

The girl replied in sweet tone,
" yes Uncle, we booked tickets three months ago, and I persuaded him, then only it was possible. Otherwise I would be stuck in this heat at Kolkata."

His husband, roughly thrust the tickets on my hands. I understood he didn't like my talking to his wife.
I asked, "name please"

Before he could say anything, his wife replied 

"He is Jayesh, my loving "Joo" I call him. Myself Meeta, and you know he calls me Meeta only. He says this is pretty name and he loves the name. Tell me Uncle, wouldn't Moo or something like that look more jazzy."

I just turned my head towards otherside window, to avoid the burning glare of Joo. Lo, There stood the hefty stranger I had evaded earlier.
Before he could say something unpleasant, I said 

" Please Sir, be patient. I am just coming up. Relax at my seat. It's all yours."

He returned grudgingly towards his seat.
Till then Joo had shown some hard eyes to Meeta, and it looked she was going to give it to him as soon as I left.

I moved on to other passengers, pleased with myself, and my heart more than happy at the jostling speed at which train was flying away. 
A shaggy man approached me, 

"Sir, I am a heart patient, my son is at Mussoorie on honeymoon. He had a fight with his wife and both are in hospital. I need a seat somehow. The tale of this stranger touched me. But I was completely helpless. I pitied my inability. How helpless I felt myself. I knew his heart was already stressed, and I placed his request foremost on my mind. I requested Joo to let him sit there for the time being and continued on my duty.

Train took a screeching halt. My heart sank. I dreaded some smallest mishap and I would be condemned to a night of misery with nutty strangers in the night.
I came to know some train had been looted and all the passengers had sat in front of train on tracks for justice in the leadership of a rising politician of Bardhaman. 
Till some goverment assurance comes train was destined to halt at the complete jungle. This wasn't new to me. 

BUT RAMLAL…,

The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. Introduced By: The Fool, Participation Count: 2



{ 33 comments... read them below or Comment }

  1. Nice one. The poor TTs have to deal with strangers every night. We never give a second thought to them.

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    1. Thanks Fool, was waiting for your feedback.

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  2. I know..I have travelled from Bombay to Pune many times on their seats. They are angels when we need them and demons when we don't.

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    1. Very true Diwakar, it's a tedious task

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  3. I travel a lot and could relate to the story. TT's are those class of government employees who are invisible for the most part, but serve an important function in keeping the wheels on our rickety democracy. Nice read and all the best!

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  4. Great post PL. The plight of the poor TT was expressed exceptionally well. :)
    ATB for BAT.

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  5. Thanks Harshal, encouraged by your words. Same to you for BAT.

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  6. Ah! exactly poor T.T's ..we never think from their perspective..you have articulated it so well...
    All the best for BAT

    Many thanks for your encouraging words on my post ..keep visiting..

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    1. Thanks odyzz, best wishes to you too for BAT.

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  7. Ahh! A terrific perspective to understand strangers in the night. I wonder where you got the thought from. I have more respect for TTs having read your post. There's so much they deal with... and so much unpredictable. Really liked your post :)

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    1. Thanks Kshitij, you never know how inspired I am by your words. Hope to see you here more often.
      Thanks again

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  8. I could never imagine that Strangers in the night would be associated with TTs. I feel bad about the hardships they face when really all they are doing is their job. And then there are some shameless arrogant men who act as if these people are their servants. Moo and Joo brought a smile to my face :) Nice narrative!

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    1. I liked firstly the sensitivity to call meeta as moo wanted yo be called as.
      Thanks tonns for encouraging sincere words and hope to see you here more often.
      Thanks Again.

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  9. Poor TT has to travel with so many strangers.. Loved your post Pramod! Keep writing.. Good luck for BAT! And thanks for your encouraging comment on my post!

    Someone is Special

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    1. Thanks immensely @Someone, best wishes to you too for BAT.

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  10. poor TT's have to come across and deal with some nasty morons and still we blame them
    ATB for BAT :)
    i could not participate...but u can see my post here
    Karan - Strangers in the Night

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  11. Thanks karan, hope to see you here more often.

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  12. Pramod..Many thanks to Blogaton, it got me here :)And I am so pleased :D
    Enjoyed the story telling, the talkative Moo with her joo's amusing account was awesome..LOL:))
    Personally, I can't imagine talking to new set of strangers every day! Must be so boring and monotonous for these TTs....but, c'est la vie!:))
    Very well penned, Pramod!! All the best~

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    1. Panchali ji, really I am thankful of blogaton, that it boasts of an avid reader and writer like you.
      Thanks tonns and best wishes to you too for BAT.

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  13. well all is already said...so...i just loved it :)

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    1. Thanks tonns Dreamer, seeing the great response I am thinking of a sequel to But Ramlal.
      Thanks again.

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    2. Thanks tonns dreamer for the encouraging words.

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  14. Hi Pramod

    Reading that made me nostalgic .. Got pushed into memories of my train journeys . Well written . Good luck :)

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    1. Thanks jaish_vats, was waiting for your feedback on earnest.
      Thanks again.

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  15. Never thought about a concept like this could be developed on this topic. Very well expressed, We often ignore the plight of tts. Nice work. ATB :-)

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  16. The misery of the TT is somewhat funny in some convoluted way. Nice post :)

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  17. I think I especially enjoyed the title of it :)

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  18. Your post brought the whole scene clearly before my eyes & i could visualize how TTS had behaved in ditto manner whenever we traveled by train....it was an excellent theme-ATB.

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  19. Thanks Indu ji, The plight is extraordinary with pressures to meet the revenue target.

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