A railway journey/derailment....

Goods trains are running off the tracks;
Pained by the neglect they receive?
Another story brought just a sigh;
Hope we had, in railways, so high!

Past midnight we went to sleep;
4-hour delay did not make us weep.
In the morning, we were up to see
Near a village, the train on halt.

A small house was found nearby;
A crowd soon formed in their land.
Coconuts and water was much in demand;
Pots of tea vanished in no time.

Someone went on a hunt for facts:
Someone said we were here from five;
Till 12 we wont leave this place.
All were soon on their way for good.

The train was moved to a 'better' place;
Little shops were soon in sight.
The shops and people rose to the need
Business sense too was up very soon.

The hotel which cooked barely once;
Did the rounds beyond six for us.
Simple rice, a curry and papad
Made a hearty meal for all.

Clean, simple and nice to taste;
Railway food was too pale in match.
The price was double their normal rate;
But half of what the railways took.

A "picnic" mood was in the air
Strangers? No, old-time friends.
Many a committees here and there
Holding debates on troubles of life!

Blaming the fate and railways too
Outlets, they gave, for the frustration.
The person next blamed his wife;
Coming alone, he had no trouble.

The railways did their best to help;
No one would know the stories true!
The fans were off, the taps all dry;
The Sun was too angry to care.

After a lot of hue and cry;
The train did finally make its move.
We reached our homes safe and sound;
Just a score of hours late!

Machines going down for a while;
Eyebrows many do rise in turn.
When a thousand people waste a day;
Even a sorry is a waste of time.

At the exit, I took out the ticket;
The man at the gate wanted to check.
At the top was a little wish for us,
"Happy Journey"! Sure, we had.

[April 1998 — I was in this train!!]

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