Saturday, August 30, 2014

Kerala diary 1 - Confusing numbers and ticketless travel

Train journey is always more lively than one by flight. And a day travel is better than one by night. The view from the window, of hills, barren land, rivers, bushes and trees, is an ample and welcome relief from the clutter of vehicles and concrete buildings of the city. The journey itself is a sort of perfect getaway.

Where is my coach?

While boarding the Inter City to Ernakulam this morning, I found the numbering of coaches confusing. Though coach D followed coach C, the numbers went in the descending order rather than ascending. That is, after C1 came D11 then D10, D9 etc.

This is confusing. A person looking for coach C would end up in the wrong end of the train if he followed the numbers. Since alphabetically C comes before D, he would look for C coach before D1. But actually the C coach was before D11. That's absolutely strange.

If alphabets followed a particular order, it would make sense for the numbers too to follow the same order.

Now you don't need a ticket to travel

As the ticket examiner did the rounds, I saw that many people had the printed paper ticket, though while booking online IRCTC clearly discourages you from printing out the ticket. A few of us showed our mobile phone. But he did not look at the SMS confirmation. He only checked our identity card -- PAN card in my case. He asked me which was my seat number and he verified what I said on the list he carried. He wanted to see the identity card of passegers who brought printed tickets too.

The advent of internet and mobile phone has done away with the physical, printed ticket that was once upon a time mandatory to travel. Now you just need to know your seat number and have your identity card.

It's too cold

The chair car is too cold and I can't find a  regulator. There isn't one, it looks like. There should have been one for the blast of cold air streaming out of the two vents overhead. The train has reached Dharmapuri. The sun is up and the warm rays are finding their way in. Hopefully it will help matters.

1 comment:

  1. Strange that after C1 came D11. The passengers would have got thoroughly confused. There should be a systematic order in numbering the seats to avoid a problem. Hope you enjoyed the journey.