Travelling to college never gave me any serious trouble. Even for the HSC exams I reached the center as expected.
My examination center was at a college located at Charni Road. Apart from the exam anxiety, I would sometimes feel anxious of trains running late. But as the days passed I went through the setback smoothly. All was absolutely at its pace. The exams were good and so were the trains. I never had to hurry to get to my exam seat.
Now the vacations had begun, but unfortunately I had to appear for the engineering CET exam that was scheduled at the end of the vacation month. It was on Sunday at 10am sharp. This time my center was at the engineering college located at Byculla (Mumbai Central, WR). And I had to reach on time, of course! I prepared for the exam as seriously as I could, thinking I would reach the exam center well before time.
I remember the morning a day before the exam, when I was having my breakfast, I just tried to overlook the newspaper headlines…when something caught my eyes. There was a picture of a local train and besides it was a big red signal. I still never realized what was it! As I read the article, I had to check out the calendar, I could not believe my fortune! There was a mega block scheduled on the western railway line on Sunday. O my GOD! tomorrow is Sunday! I had thought right. Now this was huge.
Tomorrow was the exam I had been sacrificing the whole vacation preparing for it and now when the day was to arrive I was not sure of reaching the exam center. I called up one of my friends but he had already left for an overnight with his relatives staying close to our exam center. I was troubled! and soon called another and had the matter discuss. I learned that there would be some trains leaving for churchgate station, and felt a bit relieved. We decided to leave early in the morning…
The next day morning I never prayed for good or easy paper rather I begged to drop me to my exam center on time!! I hoped for nothing better!
It was decided that papa should accompany me. We then set off…reaching the railway station I was nervous to see no crowd on the platform. Today there were hardly any people on a usually crowded station. I met my friend who was with his mummy. I was little reassured to see him. It was 7, my exam was at 10, so we had 3 hours. We waited for the Virar local to arrive, seeing the Vasai local standing on platform no.1 I thought we could sit into it and reach on time…but as soon as I was about to decide a Virar local arrived on the platform we were standing on.
The train was running at an average speed making halts every now and then. We had reached Daisar, when I started getting anxious. Just then the train made a stop. Time passed, it was around half passed 7, then it was quarter to eight, quarter passed eight, still the train was at the same place. We thought of jumping out and take an auto to atleast reach Andheri or Bandra. It was almost 9! I told we had to do something, but my daddy kept cool and told me to wait for another 10 minutes. Just five minutes passed and the train started!!
From then on the train had an average speed and stopped only at the stations. Borivali at 9am, Andheri at 9:20, Bandra at 9:30, this was the time when the students were to enter the class and I was at Bandra!! Dadar at 9:40am, then came my destination the Mumbai Central! at around 9:50, walking out of the huge station took us another five minutes we caught a cab and hurried to the college. It was already 10 when I entered the college premise!! I looked behind and the main gates got shut and locked! I had made it! But then I still had to search the building and the specified classroom…At last we both entered the room and were pleased to see our colleagues.
Had I not been able to reach the college on time I might have had to take some other course and not engineering…I think I reached there just in time because my destiny was SET for CET exam!
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