Now allow me to put before you two of my strange experiences, as I promised that I would, in the previous post.
While I was returning from the festival, I took a tram (no.5). Now, this tram usually goes to the city Mannheim, where I was staying. But that day, I noticed that the tram was displaying the destination as Edingen. I saw it but then just brushed aside the little speck of doubt that I had in mind thinking that it would be just passing by Edingen and that’s not the final destination. So instead of getting down at the train station of Heidelberg and taking the train, which was my original plan, I simply continued in the tram.
Now, as it was supposed to – the tram reached Edingen and then just stopped. There was just one more passenger left by then in the tram and he also got down. And so I too had to do so. The tram then went into the yard. And there I was in front of a field of yellow flowers (Rapeseed/Canola). And no-one on the tram station. I spotted a woman (and she was the only other person there apart from the one man who had disembarked from the tram with me). She looked Asian and was dressed in a salwar-kameez. I went to her to ask the location of the train station so that I could take a train to Mannheim. She tried to guess which languages could I speak – Deutsch, English. Upon seeing the look on my face, she added Urdu and I said that she can continue in Urdu. (I come from a North Indian city where both Hindi and Urdu are spoken). She then asked me if I was from Bangladesh and I mentioned India. (All this before I could get to the question of the train station!). She told me she was from Pakistan.
Then we got to my question and I explained to her my dilemma. She said that she also had to go to Mannheim and there would be another tram (no.5) in some time along with telling me that she was waiting for a friend. (I could sense that she was quite talkative – so I decided to humor her). So there we were – an Indian and a Pakistani sitting side by side at a lone country side in Germany. Quite ironical that there is so much talk of spreading a feeling of unity between the two countries – and when in fact the common people of the two countries meet – then all they feel is a sense of being part of the same subcontinent instead of the animosity spread by the politicians.
And so we started talking and I saw that she had some difficulty in keeping the cherries that she had probably plucked there and had wrapped them in a tissue. She asked me if I had some plastic cover which she could borrow but I didn’t have any. So I offered her some tissues that I had. We continued to talk. Then a little while later, our much awaited tram appeared bringing with it the friend of hers and we boarded it and went towards our destinations, never to meet again.
Now you would wonder, what was strange about this incident that I was making a fuss about. Let me walk you through the happenings of the day once again, starting from the time I left the hotel. I was about to leave the hotel, whence, upon reaching the reception area, I realized that I had left the packet of tissues in the room and even thought of continuing. But then thought the better of it and went back to pick it up. After that I proceeded towards Heidelberg. Then spent the day with Constanze and Peter at the festival. After I took their leave, I went to catch the tram and even though rationale said to get down at the train station and take the train, something else said to me to continue with the tram, subduing the rationale. The tram reached Edingen and stopped there, forcing me to get down there. Now, there I was standing at a place where I had no intention of, nor the knowledge, that I would reach. There I found the lady from Pakistan and I think you would have guessed by now what is the strangeness. The tissues – which I had forgotten to pickup, went back to take, did not have any use for them the whole day – were coming to use at a place for a lady – both of whose existence was not known to me till that day and time!
Don’t things like this make you wonder who is the puppeteer making you do all this? Strange are the ways.
The second incident was not that strange but nonetheless, I would put it before you and leave you to decide for yourself.
In the same tram, I saw two small girls playing with a balloon and they tied it to one of the chairs. Now when their stop came, they alighted with their parents. They were already standing sometime before their stop and I felt like untying their balloon and giving it to them but then decided not to bother, in case the parents felt like I was intruding. However, the whole scene of what would happen next was already playing
in my mind. I could see that once they stepped out and go a little further, they would think about their balloon and then cry. Then their father would have to come and check in the tram, if the tram was still there and the tram would start. And that’s exactly what happened. The tram was still standing at the stop, I am not sure why. The harried father came in and looked for something, and instinctively I showed him where the balloon was, he thanked me and before he could get down, the tram started off! (He then called his wife on the mobile to tell her that he would get down at the next stop and return. It is times like these that I am glad that there are these mobile phones, rest of the times it is more of a bother than a useful thing.)
Nonetheless, what I saw in my mind a few minutes back, manifested itself within the next minutes!
So now tell me what do you think of these two incidents?
15.05.2016 – I remembered this post of mine when today I encountered by chance, The Daily Post’s discover challenge – you guessed it right – called Chance Encounter!