When the chicken shit hits the fan

19 10 2007

KK had been driving the Maalgadi for many years now. He was still savouring the taste of delicious but heavy biryani that he had gobbled down late in the afternoon, as he wanted to reach Nagpur, his destination by dinner time. KK was a man whose life was governed by food. People say that he knew all the dhabas in India where one gets good food and always knew, not only what to order but more often than not, the cook of the dhaba. His lean frame did not reveal his only true love…food. His appetite was legendary and he had won many bets with his truly amazing ability to have food enough to ‘feed a Baraat’.


Goods Train


KK knew Bhikshapore had a canteen where Balwinder Singh ‘Lovlee’ made lovely aloo parathas served with tikkis of fresh butter. He was ruing the fact, that there was no time to stop, as the signal went green and he moved to the designated 30 kmph allowed for a goods train at this particular stretch. As he was describing the aloo parathas in mouth watering detail to Rama Rao, the assistant driver, he saw XL running towards the train and then he saw Rathore on the other side of the track. Curious, he looked at the track to understand what the commotion was all about and with a look of horror slammed the brake.

XL grabbed the lever and pulled……..*Click*….nothing happened as the engine was already on the coupling. Even Chacha Choudhary’s Saboo would not have been able to move the coupling, as the Diesel WDM 3A….weighing 18.8 tons was already on it. The speed was around 4 times of what is recommended for taking a turn, at the time of shunting.

There was an eerie silence when time stood still and then it happened. The engine, due to its momentum, jumped and mangled the track and as the brakes locked up, it skidded for some fifty feet before coming to a halt. The bogies tottered on the track and for a fleeting moment, seemed to stabilize, just before they fell to one side with a loud crashing sound. A plume of smoke and dust went up in the air. KK was in a daze as he had hit his head on the control panel while braking suddenly. Rama Rao was thrown off his seat and was lying on the floor of the engine, clutching his leg, hoping like hell that it was not broken.

As Rathore and the others, watched the disaster in horror, the cacophony surrounding the accident site revealed the contents of the goods train …it was carrying live poultry and to make matters worse, the now broken eggs….talk about literally raising a stink.

Witnessing such an event can send a person in a state of shock but Rathore was a person of unusual calm and ability to hold one’s nerve even in extreme conditions, especially with chicken flying all over the place. He was the first person to reach KK and Rao. He called out to Alfa to get back to the office and call an ambulance. A crowd had started to gather and confusion prevailed. Luckily there was no major fire as the train was not carrying any inflammable material.

Chai was busy flapping his long arms, trying to get rid of a stubborn chicken sitting on his head, as if enjoying the attention and refusing to fly away. He finally got the chicken off and was disgusted to find chicken droppings in his hair as the bird was ‘shit scared’.

Alfa came back with an ambulance and after seeing it off, Rathore asked Chai to take charge while he informed his seniors about the accident. The crowd that had gathered began to recede, as the news of the accident became stale.

Alfa saw a chicken stuck at the door of a bogie. He was tempted to grab it and had begun to salivate at the thought of butter chicken cooked with juicy tomatoes. As he took a step towards the bogie, out of the corner of his eye he saw Rani looking at him. Rani, a sweeper at the station was best described as a tomboy with a razor sharp tongue. Alfa stopped as he saw a look of disdain sweeping over Rani’s face. His huge male ego was hurt; he knew picking a trapped chicken was not really macho. He decided to catch one of the live ones running around, just to prove a point.

Alfa sneaked up close to one chicken and was just an arm’s length away when it ran for its life. Alfa, all of Six feet and almost a couple of inches over that, moved swiftly behind it. The chicken darted around with Alfa close behind. The chicken then went back towards the overturned bogie and slid under a twisted sheet of metal, to go over to the other side with Alfa screaming profanities at the top of his lungs. Rani burst into giggles and Alfa menacingly gave her the finger before she chuckled and walked off.

Rathore was briskly walking back to his office muttering to himself, thinking of how he would explain all this to BC.




One response

11 01 2009

rani – lol… drool!

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