Conversations I Wish I Had

Train Diary 1

Shoba Narayan

Train diary No.1: We’re all in it together Trains, along with cricket, Bollywood and food, are cultural touchstones. They are part of our collective subconscious and define us as Indians

Shoba Narayan


I am on the Mysore-Mayiladuthurai Express, a long and rather wonderful royal-blue train that cuts through interior Karnataka and Tamilnadu.  Mysore, where it originates, is like the humanities department of a great university, churning out stalwarts in multiple areas: R.K. Narayan the writer; R.K. Laxman the cartoonist; T.S. Satyan the photographer; Thirumalai Krishnamacharya, Pattabhi Jois, and B.K.S. Iyengar the yoga masters; the Mysore school of musicians including Mysore Vasudevachar and Veena Doraiswamy Iyenger among others.  What is it about that gentle city that churns out such creativity? Is it the pace of life or some additive in the water?

The final destination is Mayiladu-thurai, which means the “place/port in which peacocks dance.”  I am getting off in Kumbakonam…

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This entry was posted on September 17, 2014 by .
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