1st March 2022 Mr Nandakumar
Hello everyone, I have the great pleasure to introduce Mr Nandakumar. He has contributed a few of his paintings here. But today, he has written a story about his train ride😊.
“I landed at the train station at Palghat (now)Palakkad in January of 1982 at an unearthly hour. On arrival, I checked into a hotel on the first day at work. While at the check-in counter, the receptionist informed me that that day was bandh day. Now many may not be familiar with this strange phenomenon. It just means there is no work. All offices, shops and transport services come to a standstill. I was devasted to my core that this should happen on the first day of my work☹.
After a while, I enquired about any possibility of getting to work. Someone said that an early morning train would depart the station in an hour. I managed to get that with some biscuits and tea to give me sustenance for my journey. Most passengers were asleep on the train. So, I asked a co-passenger about getting to this place called Kuttipuram. He said I could hitch a ride in a jeep. It was a roller coaster ride that remained fresh in my mind. I still remember with great clarity that the driver had only one hand on the steering wheel with half his body out of the car seat. Not sure why people would drive like that? My heart was in my mouth☹.
I prayed to God to save him and my first working day😊. Suddenly the jeep stopped in front of a hospital. He gave me an annoying look, asked me to disembark, and drove off. I felt energised that I visited every doctor at the hospital. Some of them wished me a bright future. After I finished my work for the day, I returned to the station, grabbed some hot snacks and managed to secure a window seat.
It was then I noticed the vast stretches of paddy fields bordered by hills lush with green trees. In those days, there were no camera phones. I captured every scene and colour with my eyes and stored those memories in my brain😊. I never knew that one day I would paint those landscapes using digital art😊😊.
When I reached the hotel, my Superior (Boss) was waiting for me as he knew that I had left for work very early in the morning. I briefed him about what happened during the day. It was then my Boss said, “if you have achieved all this on a bandh day, you are here to stay…and stay I did for the next 38 years.”
A journey that began with a train ride to Palghat where despite all odds, I felt incredible. It was a beautiful moment that I would always cherish. Never let any obstacle stand in your way.”