” Life is like a train ride. We get on. We ride. We get off. We get back on and ride some more. There are accidents and there are delays. At certain stops, there are surprises. Some of these will translate into great moments of joy; some will result in profound sorrow.”- Author unknown. There are so many life is like a train ride quotes. Many authors and poets use the metaphor of train journey for life. But for about 8 million people in Mumbai, train is a part of their life. Rightly described as the lifeline of Mumbai, it plays a very crucial role in our lives. We are greatly dependent on the local train network, few delays and cancellations, our life gets disturbed. I am one of them. I spend 4 hours everyday travelling. Everyday I meet many new people and the same people and my train friends(a category of friends which only Mumbaikars have ;)).
From the past few days, I am travelling alone, which is usually not the case. Everyday I observe people, interact with many and overhear many conversations. I have overheard many ladies complaining and cribbing about how their lives are just about travelling-office-travelling. By the time they reach home, they are too tired to spend time with family, or just there is nothing much to say other than the train-rides and office politics ! Avoiding both the topics, they prefer to sleep. During monsoon, many people spend even 6 hours travelling in Mumbai local. This made me wonder, is this what we Mumbaikars call life ? Do our lives have no other meaning than just travelling and returning !? Train is life for Mumbaikars ?
Its all perspective. Its like the glass is half full, or half empty !! Both are true, but it depends on the attitude, how we take it. Some things we have to accept and move on with it. There is no point cribbing. Yes, we travel , we spend 4 to 6 hours daily in train, so what ? You are not alone, there are 8 million people doing the same.
There are people who enjoy travelling, have a train group, countless train friends, are merry, discuss everything and don’t crib at all. In fact, motivate other travellers and give them tips too 😉
I would say that people who travel by Mumbai local are one of the most hardworking, perseverant , social people in the world. They experience life in its true form, every single day.
Below are some qualities which Mumbai local travellers develop and even master:
Being Social: They are the most social people in the world. They can start a conersation with anyone, and on any topic !! Moreover, they feel connected to many people too. Train friends soon become the closest friends.
Time Management: Their system gets tuned to keep track of every minute. Moreover, they will value each and every minute of their life. Even 2 minutes means a lot !( Had written a whole post on it – prakritisingh.wordpress.com/2013/09/26/managing-time-the-train-way/)
Multitasking: Listening music, reading, chatting, eating,playing games,these are some things which are done simultaneously. For bloggers, even writing 😉
Never lose hope: Even if one single minute is left for the train, they will hope they get it. Many times the postive attitude works a lot 🙂
Running: Its dangerous, but all the local travellers atleast for once, must have ran madly to catch a train. Well there are those who do this everyday too, in kareena kapoor and Shah rukh khan style 😉
Flexibility: Sounds funny, but their bodies remain flexible. Due to the crowd, they can stand in weird positions, on their toes, all the body weight balancing on one leg , their bags on their head and what not ! Also they get free body massage many times 😉
Planning: Every day begins with a plan, which train to take, what time to leave from home to reach office/college on time, and so on. These little things make them strong in memory , assumptions and ultimately planning becomes a part of every task.
Introspect:Many people prefer utilizing the time with oneself, to introspect, to ask answers to oneself, and some even meditate (only possible in harbour line)
The list can be never ending.. These are just some of them. So, if we see it positively, each day is a new learning, new hope for Mumbai local travellers. Are they really wasting time ? I believe nothing in life goes waste, everything teaches us something.
Ultimately, life is what our thoughts make it…
Straight from my Heart,