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Blog Entry# 1365636  
Posted: Feb 10 2015 (15:54)

56 Responses
Last Response: Sep 11 2015 (12:17)
★★★  Rail Fanning
Feb 10 2015 (15:54)   RCF/Kapurthala Rail Coach Factory (1 PFs)

PixelTrailzDotCom*^~   1748 blog posts   53 correct pred (79% accurate)
Entry# 1365636            Tags   Past Edits
I know it is late, but it is time, I pen down my experiences. I will post this on my site , but being an IRI initiated adventure, the preview starts here
It was a moonlit night in old Mexico. I walked alone between some old Adobe haciendas. Suddenly, I heard the plaintive cry of a young Mexican girl. That's how Pat Boone starts off his Speedy Gonzales and has nothing to do with this recollection of mine.

It was indeed a moonlit night and a good night's rest was in the beckoning. I took my little monkeys to bed to quickly get them to sleep so that I can indulge in a little bit of "me" time before I wind up for the day. Just as my heavy eyelids was desperately trying to outbulge my eyes to send me to paradise, I heard that distinctive beep of someone pinging me on Facebook. It is a cardinal sin not to check and go to sleep, lest the demons unleash the lousiest dreams on the planet. I have a message waiting for my droopy eyes. "Let me offer you a deal. A visit to RCF, Kapurthala. Does it excite you ? Received permission to visit the factory on 17th October 2013. So if you are interested, I will add your name on". Before I rant on, let me emphasize, why this is a BIG thing. First, I am a rail enthusiast and a visit to manufacturing facility where the passenger coaches are manufactured is a dream. Second, getting permission to visit a Central Governnment owned research and development manufacturing unit is not something you get everyday in India. You need to pull a lot of strings to get this done. Needless to say, I am super excited and still not sure if the actual journey, factory visit, a personal trip after a while or something else which is making my adrenaline hit the roof.
The First Night - 14-Oct-2013
I have never travelled in "The Rajdhani Express" (To be referred as the RAJ henceforth) and excitement of travelling in one of the better Rajdhani Expresses in its LHB avatar was making the day crawl ever so slowly. Packing for a single travelling male is just a 10 minute exercise and inspite of an extended one hour relaxed packing schedule, time seems to have come to a complete standstill. As the clock slowly crawls past 5PM, I bid my goodbyes and embark on an exciting trip ahead. Bangalore roads were empty due to holiday season and the short trip to the railway station was much quicker than anticipated. I boarded the BWT passenger at WFD and had PK joining me at KJM and reached SBC close to an hour and half before departure. With a full 90 minutes to kill before departure, I decided to indulge in a short pre dinner roadside junk , which on hindsight, would turn out to be one of the better decisions we made. Back inside SBC, we meet Mrs & Mr PKV waiting for us. PKV was dressed for a hiking trip :) and sporting a young early 40's look !!! As the rake enters the platform, the non-descript and dull platform suddenly barges to life. For some reason, which I am still yet to comprehend, I just fail to understand the urgency with which the passengers board the train. It is not as if it will pull out ahead of schedule when everyone boards. Anyway we gave way for all those busy bees who wanted to reach the Capital a bit earlier than us, settled our luggage inside and got ready for a small photo shoot. The loco HAS to be shot and framed. So off we go, shoot the LOCO and a few otherwise useless shots and before we knew it, we were all set for departure. Boarded the train, got our tickets checked and settled for the Great Rajdhani Dining experience.
Dinner in RAJ is a sight to behold. Just as we settle down, our designated pantry attendant stacks the dinner right next to the doorways and vestibules. My assumption on this bizarre maneuver was that he was trying to be efficient, however as the dinner progressed, it was clear that he did not want the passengers any way to escape this exclusive gourmet. Water bottles were nearly thrown at you, soupsticks slided on a not so sparkling plastic red plate, A red piping hot liquid, which we later came to know as tomato soup was slided efficiently across. Now that the starter was served, it was finished ever so quickly as we did not intend to savour the taste for a longer time. Sarcasm apart, we finished it quickly because thats all it takes to gulp two tablespoons of soup. Now comes the main course. 3 Chapathis each the size of a standard Indian Idli, A Paneer curry which sent us on a leather hunt for the paneer and 4 tablespoons of rice, which was, well let's just leave it at that. A request was yoghurt / code was promptly served with a red blazing stare and followed by a small cup of white liquid 30 minutes later. The dessert was a surprise. We were served Baskin Robbins smallest cup of Vanilla ice-cream. It was honestly as vanilla as it could be, but I could already hear a few passengers complaining that they did not want a milkshake for dessert. Now that the Liliputtans were served dinner, the passengers decided to settle down gradually for what is going to be a good 30 hours of the RAJ experience, albeit with a grumbling stomach.
Continued here : /blog/post/1365636

31 posts - Feb 2015

8 posts - Mar 2015

5 posts - Apr 2015

2 posts - Jul 2015

3 posts - Aug 2015

2 posts - Thu Sep 10, 2015

Sep 10 2015 (16:47)
maheshsunda*^~   4338 blog posts   31422 correct pred (71% accurate)
Re# 1365636-53            Tags   Past Edits
Hmm...a lot philosophical this time, MSN. Nevertheless, we got the same adrenaline rush during that racy report to NGP, BPQ, and SC(R), and the biriyani bonanza.

Sep 10 2015 (20:28)
ಅಶೋಕ್ अशोक Ashok*^~   18335 blog posts   38072 correct pred (65% accurate)
Re# 1365636-54            Tags   Past Edits
In a way your delay in compiling the Kapurthala trip report has helped me to recollect the memories of meeting you (along with two more of your travel mates) and other rf's from hyderabad area at Secunderabad railway station....It was indeed a nice moment and glad that you recollected :)

Sep 10 2015 (22:42)
sbc15~   586 blog posts   224 correct pred (65% accurate)
Re# 1365636-55            Tags   Past Edits
Absolutely brilliant. . !
I m abt to sleep.. n d last part just made my day :)
Thanks for d lovely travelogue!

Sep 11 2015 (12:16)
PixelTrailzDotCom*^~   1748 blog posts   53 correct pred (79% accurate)
Re# 1365636-56            Tags   Past Edits
LOL :) After all this you realize all that you need is just food, family, shelter and good health.

Sep 11 2015 (12:17)
PixelTrailzDotCom*^~   1748 blog posts   53 correct pred (79% accurate)
Re# 1365636-57            Tags   Past Edits
Yes. I met a lot of folks for the first time :)

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