…And so it happened one day that my five month old baby Nirvaan, his dad and I were to come back to Kolkata,our home from the peaceful hamlet of Mccluskiegunj. We had booked our tickets for the Shaktipunj Express which halts at Mccluskiegunj station believing that it will be easier for us to board the train without having to go to Ranchi the nearest prominent station with the baby.
Little did we know what awaited us!
Mccluskiegunj has a quaintly rustic station. It is like one of those stations we pass through but never recollect the name. Nestled amidst trees, villagers, mostly tribals sat on the tawdry benches and dozed and waited for their train to arrive. We were a spectacle for these kind and gentle people. Mr. Deepak Rana, our host had accompanied us to the station to help us board the station. Twenty five years a Sarpanch and a very popular man, his presence attracted the locals to come and interact with us. We met Mr Wajid who would eventually help us a lot. I’ll write about him a little later. There was this tribal woman who came to cuddle the baby and talked to us in her tongue of which we deciphered very less except for the part where she enquired why the baby of two Mota Hathis( fat elephants) was so skinny!!! Neel cried at the strange sound of the whistle. The men and women made a space for me to calm him and breastfeed him.
Finally after we waited for the train for half an hour, it arrived. However, our coach was at a place much beyond the little elevation they call the platform. So, the daddy carried some of the luggage, a few villagers lend their hand to carry the pram, and everyone else helped us to put all of these up in the train. The halt was for 3 minutes, much of which was spent in walking. The kind soul Mr. Wajid took baby Neel in his arms. We were helped to board the train by Mr. Rana. Finally, baby Nirvaan was lifted like Simba and put to the daddy’s arms very carefully. Just at that moment, our train squeaked and started once again.
New parents often shy away from traveling with infants. However, once you set out the roads will bring you to strange circumstances and wonderful people and somehow we will always take back memories of a lifetime worthy of ten thousands of blog posts and accepting life as it comes.
Keep traveling. See you someday!