The Dehli train station is huge. There are people moving around everywhere yelling to each other and rushing to make their trains. We took the sleeper car and as we boarded the train I was confused to see people sitting on benches. What I didn’t know was that around 9 pm the beds are folded out from the walls to hang in threes. In our little alcove of seats (similar in layout to the small compartments on the hogwarts express) the man sitting next to me lived in Varanasi and was eager to talk to me about America. His son had studied at Oklahoma State and was now working in IT back in India and his daughter is currently working in pharmaceuticals in St. Louis. He gave me the names of the best sweets shops in Varanasi and made me promise to call the number he wrote in the back of my book if I ever ran into trouble. This practice of total strangers giving us their phone numbers or addresses in case of emergencies is quite common and is an indicator of how welcoming the culture is. I didn’t sleep much on the train due to the constant rocking side to side and the regular calls from the chip and chai hustlers but when we woke we were all captivated by the farm scenes illuminated in the weak morning light out the train window.
I like trains, Rachel Nahirny