Thursday, January 10, 2013

13 hours journey tasted our nurves

It took 13 hours to reach Dhaka from Jessore. The journey was delayed and cursed. I experienced 2 longer journeys earlier, 16 hours and 17 hours due to getting stuck at 'chor'. But this one was really irritating.

'Morning shows the day', the proverb is well accepted by all. But unfortunately I don't believe it, rather my trust is in 'Afternoon proves the day'; I learned it from numerous real life acts.

I chose 29th December, Saturday for my return, living only 4 days at home, shortest period of my life, in order to attend my new & last job on 1st January. I had to prepare documents as they asked for it, thus left home 2 days ago, though I never needed any document for any previous job, because IT sector is somewhat different from other fields, we focus on works rather than certificates.

Thursday was disgusting; ferry jam was common due to mid-level cold strike, all time bittering cold wind made life devastating. Jessore's situation was much worse than any other side, adjacent Chuadanga saw 6.4 degree Celsius one day ago. Ferry stopped trafficking at night due to heavy mist for 8-10 hours, all buses used to delay. However, I went for ticket on Friday morning, though didn't see sunlight till then.

Saturday, 10:30am, my bus should've left by this time. The day surprised me with glazy sunlight; it was bright, no sign of mist. All other buses arrived & left in schedule time, except my bus; you know my bus is always later than me! Bus counter was full, other series went by, but this crowd didn't move, realized that they are  same my bus riders. Counter-men told that the bus arrived at nearest terminal in time, but delayed to change glass as they're broken. The ugly bus arrived after 1 hour and left at 11:45am; on landing we realized it's old like ancient mariner cursed with fragile pattern and stupid seats.

After 1 hour we realized that the bus is moving like cow-wagon. The driver was horrible, even local buses crossed our bus. I'm not fan of fast rides, but needed quick shift towards ferry before evening. Trucks are preferred for ferry after evening & buses wait for the day. However, our bus reached 'ghat' after 3 hours, though usual time is around 2+ hours. I feared a big line, but it exceeded my thoughts; 2 parallel lines of trucks were already there, buses made 3rd row. The road got stuck, it’s impossible for any vehicle to cross this line, ferries arrived at this side, but bus can't make way. Driver made another stupid move, slided right by the melting line to cross front bus, but too narrow space pushed it to shake violently. Passengers began to shout as it was about to dive into pond.

Girls' panic began immediately. A teenage girl began to scold her somebody in loud voice, charged why he purchased ticket for this bus! When crisis strikes, women tend to loose common sense. Else, she should realize that its not driver's fault for the traffic jam, if she rides on a Pajero then the same case she had to face.

I decided to walk down the road, a fresh graduate from Chittagong varsity sat beside me, accompanied me. We walked for about 20 minutes, viewed harsh reality & concluded that its impossible for the bus to reach ferry in next 2 hours. There's just 1 road for vehicles of both ferry & lunch. And that's stuck.

It was sunny day though morning was misty. Marvel clouds in deep blue sky, big river, the annoyed crowd added some eternal flavor. I enjoyed the moments.

Finally we crossed Padma 15 minutes before evening. I was happy not to face another night waiting at ghat. But frustration embraced every passenger, even him who's highly affirmative when our bus crossed ferry & immediately stopped at a corner. Driver informed that 1 tire is gone, needs to be repaired, will cost only 1 hour. To my count, 3-4 babies were in bus, they simply began to cry as passed massive 7 hours already. I chose not to step out due to shivering cold, but had to get down after 45 minutes, watched tire operation. Another bad news kicked our hopes, one more tire is punctured, would take another 1 hour. I didn't know whom to blame.

After 2.5 hours, bus began to roll at about 8pm. But heavy fog prevented its speed, can't see anything after 10 feet. I knew it, village area sees thick fog, while Dhaka may not see at all. We traveled in slow motion, but I'm happy that it was a safe journey. Aminbazar jam is a must for all, it delayed us another 30 minutes.

After 13 hours I reached my home at 11:45pm. What a memorable journey!

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