Showing posts from June, 2008

A visit to Krishnarajapuram....

A railfanning trip with other IRFCAns in Bangalore was on the cards since a very very long time. It never materialized since every one pulled out at the last moment. Finally, it happened - a meet organized at a really short notice! We were to meet at Krishnarajapuram station at 1100. I and Jacob (Another IRFCAn, staying close to my home) were to meet up at the bus stop at 1000. But a Saturday morning fever struck me, and I left my home well past 1020! We met up at the bus stop and took a bus to Jayadeva Hospital. We headed off to the Jayanagar 9th block bus stop. We missed a bus just as we were nearing the stop. WE stood there for a long time, but no buses turned up!

We then toon another bus to Silk Board, and then changed on to a bus on Route #500D. The journey took 30 minutes, and the bus driver was driving way too slow! He was really competing with pedestrians, and even rickshaws could overtake the bus! We reached Krishnarajapuram station well past 1200! We were now joined by Abrar …

The Railway Jargon...demystified...

One small comment that appeared for the post "Yet another railfanning at Bangalore City!" is the nucleus on this post. The comment said:
Never saw someone deal with those letters like WDGPOIM etc with such felicity... great! But could you also explain in our posts what these letters mean... Your blog has a great potential to demystify Railways for the millions of common people.Here I go! The locos on the Indian Railway system are mainly of two types: the Electrics and the Diesels! (I call the former as a Female and the latter as a male - I wouldn't go into the details, else I'd end up stirring a hornets' nest!). India has a variety of gauges for this railway system namely: Broad (1676mm - the most common Gauge in India - a majority of the routes in India are on this Gauge), Metre (1000mm - the erstwhile standard on many routes in India. Being converted to Broad as a part of Project Unigauge) and Narrow (762mm & 610mm).

I'd keep my discussions limited mainly…

Yet another railfanning at Bangalore City!

I had some work in the city today, and desperately wanted to spend time. I headed off from my home at around 1300. The journey started off with a few hiccups (I had to return home after walked quite a distance to pick up some thing very important - an umbrella!). I then took a rickshaw to the nearest bus stop, and got into a bus towards Kempegowda Bus station (Majestic). I got down at State Bank of Mysore, and then walked around to finish off my work (I had to jobs - managed to do one, but the other is yet to be done!).

After the hectic work, I headed off towards the Railway Station. I managed to reach the station at around 1545 (I was planning to be there atleast by 1400, but could reach only an hour and 45 minutes later!). I initially thought that the 1014 Express had left, but the platform indicators was still displaying that the train is yet to arrive! I had a cup of coffee (I had skipped lunch - and settled for a couple of guavas!) and walked around Platform 1 when I heard a WDP4 …

Back in Bangalore...

After a 10-day long relaxation visit to Kerala, I am back in Bangalore once again. This would be a short visit here in Bangalore, and I would be heading back to Kerala soon. The journey was filled with enough suspense and drama! I had reserved a ticket for the Bangalore Intercity for Friday (20 June). I was heading back home in a bus when I heard about a Harthal in the district the next day i.e., on my date of journey!

To add fuel to the fire, my ticket was waitlisted too! I decided to move to my aunt's home the previous night itself. The journey to my aunt's home in Ernakulam was more dramatical! I left my home at around 8pm. No buses stopped at the bus stop near my home, and after long suspense filled minutes, a rickshaw stopped. I reached Kodungallur at around 2030. A bus turned up at 2100. I reached my aunt's home at around 2230.

My uncle dropped me at Alwaye (Aluva) station the next morning. My ticket was still waitlisted, and I had to book another ticket in the same tr…

Short Railfanning at Thrissur

I had a small railfanning at Thrissur Station today. I was at the station to reserve a ticket for me to return to Bangalore urgently. I am now "reporting" from a cyber cafe here in Thrissur itself!

I reached the station some time after 1230. Just as I reached there, I spotted the Hyderabad-Trivandrum Sabari Express waiting to depart from PF 1 towards TVC. I couldn't check the loco, by the time i entered the PF with a PF ticket, the train was already moving - all i could see was that it was a WAP4.

Just as Sabari left, the Mangala Exp towards NZM pulled in on PF 2. Ernakulam WDM3A #16295R was in charge. The train was at the station for about 10 minutes. The station was devoid of RPF guys much to my excitement! There was one RPF guy who was roaming around the station for some time. I forgot to take an umbrella, and decided not to leave the station due to the fear of getting drenched in a downpour! Luckily nothing like that happened!

I checked the arrival status of 2432 Rajdh…

Traveling.... ticketless....

... its not deliberate! I've been traveling (or rather shuttling) between my home and the nearest town for various reasons over the past week. All the journey have been by bus. My home is on the Thrissur-Kodungallur State highway. The nearest town (Kodungallur) is just 3 kilometres away, and the bus fare is Rs. 3.

Bus services in this area is operated mostly by Private operators, while the state transport corporation (KSRTC) has a name sake presence in the sector. The major bus routes in the area (around my home) are: Kodungallur-Thrissur, Kodungallur-Irinjalakuda, Kodungallur-Mala, and Kodungallur-Chalakudy. These are the route that operate towards my home from the town, and are almost 100% operated by private operators! These services are perfectly legal, and are controlled by the state's transport regulations. Permits are given to private operators, and they are supposed to adhere to timetables fixed by the local traffic authorities.

(A private bus at the Municipal Bus statio…

In kerala - the life here

Its raining here! Monsoons reached on time in the state, but didn't get enough strength that it usually has at this time of the year. The weather is humid enough to keep people sweating through the day!
The electricity department ensures their importance daily through power cuts each evening! Am now typing this sitting near a candle! My home is situated near a major road, and vehicles running through keep making noise through the day! I was busy for the past two days owing to unpacking works at my home. This is perhaps for the first time that i'd be staying at a place close to a bus stop - the bus stop is hardly 150 metres from my home!

Off to Kerala - Update 2

Finally reached here! The train reached Thrissur at 15.53. It rained pretty heavily on the way. More coming up soon

Off to Kerala - Update 1

Good morning! I am on the 02677 bound to ERNAKULAM from bangalore. The loco in charge of my train is WDM3A 14076 of ernakulam. We left hosur at 7.42 - about twenty minutes late! More coming as the journey progresses.....

Heading off to Kerala again...

I am heading off to Kerala once again! I am taking the 02677 Ernakulam Intercity today morning to Thrisur. I'll be in Kerala for a long time now, uncertainty looms over whether I'd even return to Bangalore now!

The updates to this blog would be erratic for the next couple of weeks may be. I'll try to update it, but no guarantees would be made!

The new way to ride in the city: BMTC's Volvo!

Volvo buses revolutionized inter-city travel when they were introduced for the first time in India some time in the middle of 2002. The model that was introduced was the B7R which has a 290-hp rear mount engine. The City bus version of this bus - the "B7R LE" was introduced in India sometime in early 2006. BMTC - Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation - was the first city transport corporation to introduce them on Indian roads! Currently, three corporations operate them - BMTC, Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Limited (PMPML) and Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC), Chennai. Mumbai's BEST is expected to receive a few of these Volvos very soon.

As of now, BMTC operates about 110-odd Volvo B7R LE buses (About 74 normal buses, and about 40 buses modified to run on Airport routes). The normal B7R LE buses are called "Vajra" while the Airport ones are called "Vayu Vajra" buses. A Vajra bus can seat around 37 passengers, while Vayu Vajra buses …

First railfanning at Bangalore!

Its been over a month since I moved over to Bangalore from Mumbai. Had it been in Mumbai, I'd have done atleast 4-5 railfanning trips by now! The only 'bit' of railfanning that I could do was the trip to Mumbai in the third week of May. Unlike Mumbai, traveling within the city is a pain in the neck here in Bangalore. Reaching the City Railway station takes me a whole 45 minutes (but I have an option of either sweating it out is a normal city bus or take one of those advanced Volvo City buses!) of traveling alone! My home is in the outskirts of the city and is about 15 kms from the City Railway station. I decided to make a trip, and Monday was chosen just for spotting the Nagercoil Holiday special from Mysore.

I headed off from home at around 1400 with my brother. He left me at the bus stop, and I stood there waiting for a bus for a pretty long time. I just managed to get one at 1430. The journey to the Railway station too exactly 45 minutes, and I was there at 1515. But som…