With each passing day, a pessimist like me finds two more reasons to call the des 'dirty!' N I don't lay those claims on account of any firang-fantasy I developed... but the des is gettin dirty daily, ain't it? No, I'm not talking about the rape of tourists and even politics!
I mean, more and more cities have given up their slogans of Clean and Green... and happily uproot the trees planted and roads laid by the previous govt. in the name of development.
But that isn't what I'm talking about. I just came out of a train journey, that amazed me and that is what this is all about.
When Laluji went about saying that he turned around the railways, the NDA and me crossed tracks cautiously, thinking the trains are running backwards these days. And I entered a 3rd AC compartment yesterday, after almost 3 years, Tatkal-ing my ticket the previous day. The rightful owner of the seat I was allotted booted me out showing proof and I went squealing to the TTE. He gave me a new address, and behold!! I thought Miracles happened only in Holy Bible and Baba Ramdev's shivirs. But no, the railways simply upgraded me to 2nd AC since they cudn't put me in 3rd AC. So with the extra cost on the house, in this case on the metal roof of a train compartment, I travelled one class up.
If that wasn't enough, I entered the cabin and was pleasantly greeted by an electric plug point that said 'For Laptops and Mobile charging".... What!! I sms-ed all my friends with this new discovery and wondered if I entered a time machine instead of a train!
I'm not finished yet. I went into the loo, stylishly christened 'Lavatory' since the days of British Raj, and instead of the standard railway feature of a metallic public toilet smell (for which we actually pay the fare, the seat being a freebie), I could smell an air freshener... I almost fell off discovering an air freshener dispenser bolted to the inside wall, but the floor was dirty as before, so I checked the fall! And I turned my attention to the wash basin. For the first time in my life, I saw a liquid soap dispenser fixed above it, with liquid inside. Soap Liquid, that too! My head started reeling, and I reminded myself to go over my Detox days as soon as possible. Wonder what illusions I'm seeing due to a lack of the regular dose!
But wait, I'm still not through. The biggest shock followed these minor tremors. Apart from the mandatory steel mug chained to the water tap, for you-know-what purpose, I almost fainted discovering toilet paper in the train! Yes, my friends, an actual roll of a toilet paper!! With prints of star-fish, dolphins and sea horses on it!! Though it was a little damp and a lot unusable, it was present, alive and kicking!
Auto upgrades? Plug points?! Air fresheners!! Soap!!! Toilet Paper?? What next? Rail Hostesses!? Where is my Des Ki Dirty, I demand to know! How dare Laluji and his firang-wadi brigade destroy our national monuments in the name of development!! Yes friends, let us condemn this outrage in one voice. I know you are with me!!