Geeta was travelling to Ernakulam, Kerala, to visit her frail, old mother for the Good Friday weekend. In tow were her three-year-old daughter Ammu, and one-year-old cherub, Appu. Since it was a late night train, her husband, who wasn’t accompanying them on this trip, dropped them off at the station and settled them in their seats. Geeta would have to fend for herself and her children through the journey. Their co-passenger was a reticent lady, who kept to herself.As the train left the platform and the goodbyes faded into a distance, Geeta heard a commotion brewing within the compartment. She strained her ears to hear the conversation. All she heard was, “No, no, this is not going there”. Her anxiety levels shot up when she realised the train was not headed to Ernakulam. She had boarded the wrong train!It was a nightmare for Geeta. Concerned co-passengers suggested she alights at the next station and takes another train to her hometown. Geeta knew changing trains was her only option but she wasn’t confident of doing it alone, with the kids and all her luggage. A devout Christian, she kept mumbling, “Why must I suffer through this? This is indeed turning out to be a Good Friday for us.” However, it wasn’t time for muttering and fumbling. She had to do what was needed to, to reach her destination.Reminding herself that Easter Sunday always follows Good Friday, Geeta mustered courage, woke up a sleeping Ammu, who had to walk, so she could carry Appu, and got off at the next station. It was a rather small, dimly-lit, deserted station, with no sign of a porter at that hour. The train left the station and she walked around helplessly, looking for signs of life, at that unearthly hour.Suddenly, she saw a woman at a distance, walking towards the platform exit gate, where she stood. The lady walked right up to Geeta and, lo and behold! It was her co-passenger, who hadn’t uttered a word when they were together on the train! She offered to look after Ammu and the luggage, while Geeta tried to find a porter to ferry their luggage across the overbridge.Though it was well past midnight, a porter, who was on leave for Good Friday, emerged from the darkness and offered to carry her luggage. Her reticent co-passenger accompanied them all the way to Ernakulam, which happened to be her destination, too. The ordeal was over for Geeta and her children. They could now look forward to a bright Easter Sunday.


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