When dinner was being served last evening I asked if the train would reach Ernakulam on time. The attendant pointed out to the fact that we were ahead of time in Calicut and that there was enough ‘slack in the timings of the train to even ‘make up’ 2 hours. Such confidence cannot be browbeaten with any argument. I set the alarm for a half past the midnight hour and settled in for the short sleep.
I woke up as the alarm was set to go and made out that we were nearing Trichur. The train was late, after all; maybe, something will go wrong when you are dead sure! Thereafter, the train crawled like an Express train should not, particularly the Rajdhani. It only proved that Kerala does not respect even a hierarchy of trains, forget anything else. In hind sight, a brisk early morning walk may have got me faster in to Ernakulam!
I feared a haggle in the morning with the auto drivers. However, the pre-paid counter outside the station mitigated such a situation. The driver was well behaved and I gave him the extra he requested for the distance from the main road to the premises of the flat. The Himachal sojourn had ended and the strands of a new adventure had started its work on the loom of an exciting dream.