September 17, 2009

The new look of our very own Indian Railways

The hectic morning schedule on a weekday just got pleasant with the new Indian Railways experience. This is about my refreshing experience on my recent trip to Chennai on a Shatabdi Train, travelling Executive Class.
First of all, I cannot imagine the thought of an Executive class on a train and that too in India. The closest we would find something like this would be on a plane, which is common these days with even specially designed Embraer aircrafts designed to suit the business traveller.

Well, it felt like Singapore Airlines pushback - on time, coupled with the unpolished but warm voice over the PA system, announcing that we were on our way to Chennai with the normal welcome and details of the journey sans the altitude part!! The PA system was crisp and clearly audible to all. The next thing we knew was that we were cruising at over 100kmph with most of my fellow passengers immersed in their work, using their laptops, not to mention that it was constantly being charged through the charging facility on board. The leg room made me feel regretful of not being a Michael Jordan or a Bruce Reid - for once! and the snacks through out the 5 hour journey was tasty, filling and definitely appetising. The Train Superintendent's announcement as we neared our desination was surprising, but encouraging - "Ladies and Gentlemen, we are ahead of schedule by 15 minutes. I repeat, we are ahead of schedule by 15 minutes".

The icing on the cake was the signage at the entrance of the saloon that read "Dressing room outside this door". I ensured I used it to make sure I was ready for my meeting, the moment I landed - truly a new look to our very own Indian Railways! Long live our innovative railwaymen!!


The views and thoughts from each post expressed in this blog solely represent that of Willis Langford