Life’s ‘cool’ on a metro, but ‘the thrill is gone baby’
Metro rides are super chill...
Life’s ‘cool’ when you start from home at Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh, cross Delhi and land in Haryana to work in Gurugram. Real ‘cool’ when it’s a 48-degree centigrade summer and the distance? Just 70 kilometres, one way. Nothing cynical about being ‘cool’. It does feel cool inside an AC car and an AC metro. That is, till the metro hits a snag.
Still, on most days life isn’t that bad. AC does work well in office. The moment you step out, you know how a chicken, dead or otherwise, feels inside an oven. Brace the nature’s heat guns in an auto and reach the metro station, stand at the tail of the serpentine queue, face the security guy and the metal detector that almost threatens your masculinity, squeeze through the wicked ticket gate, scramble up the stairs as you don’t know when the crammed elevator that looks like a conveyor belt in a bottling plant may stop, and screech to a halt near the yellow line that separates life and death on the platform. Here comes the metro train, slamming its breaks at breakneck speed. God knows why they come so fast. The trains on the good old Indian Railways wade in like overweight sumo wrestlers, slow, but sure.
Boarding a metro is cool. You don’t have to. Exceptionally friendly commuters push you in. Jostling for space is just routine. It’s ‘cool’ again as you follow the majoritarian dictum of lowering the neck at 45 degrees south and start fiddling with the phone, both ears plugged. Sometimes the ears catch the rare conversations on 966 at office and new definitions for HR. Expletives are usually reserved for the immediate bosses in the workplace.
Repeat the process, head back home. Thoughts of a cool sundowner soothe the nerves when the public-address system crackles to life. ‘This journey may be delayed. Inconvenience regretted’. Thank God it’s just a ‘delay’. But the announcement keeps on coming, forcing one to switch over to cope out realism. “Oh! It happens”. As the swear words come thick and fast from handsome things in haute couture, thoughts of the sundowner slowly evaporate.
Alighting the metro is as cool as boarding it. Fellow commuters help you out. In a big way, as those who are boarding see you as their born enemy. Minus the security check, the journey ends. But you can’t help noticing that the stubborn elevator refuses to go up. The stairs have a worn-out look. The roof leaks as a blessing in the summer heat. Auto drivers greet commuters with open arms, only to turn away on hearing the destination.
Entered the car and switched on the radio. ‘The Thrill is Gone’ by B.B. King, the King of the Blues is on air.
The thrill is gone
It's gone away for good
The thrill is gone baby
It's gone away for good…
What a timing! How the hell did the RJ read my thoughts on metro ride?