Where there is a will there is a way.
The college is often the best place to make memories that go a long distance and have a significant impact on our lives. And the first year of college is the best time to do something transforming. And on this note, four boys plan on visiting Shimla, the Queen of Hill Stations after the end semester exams. The journey from Patiala to Shimla is about 170 km, with a total journey time of around 5 hours by bus. An adventure was already in the air, as it was the first time that they were going out on their own, without any help from their parents. The trip turned out to be a fantastic experience and they all found Shimla to be a very peaceful place. It was so rejuvenating that one of them announced that he will construct a house in Shimla and stay there after retirement.
Now comes the dull part, the trip ends and the four return back to the college. Furthermore, everyone has to vacate the hostel room, pack all belongings and return home for the Two months long summer break. This also means that the band of brothers would disintegrate for the period of summer break. Two of the four would head to Delhi, and the other two would also travel back to their respective homes. The bus journey from Patiala to Delhi takes about five hours, is mostly adventure less and the only thing to do is to sit and gaze from the window. But how about an adventure in boarding the buses from Patiala bus stand.
The young blood gushing down your veins makes you do stupid things. This was the most eminent thought going in the mind of both Rahul and Ravi, the Delhi boys because firstly, both the boys asked their parents to not come to Patiala, to pick them. Secondly, they decided to go on their own via bus, instead of going by cab. Thirdly they miscalculated the amount of luggage they had, and an hour before catching the bus, they realize that the total amount of luggage is around 40 kgs. Furthermore, these 40 kgs were disintegrated into 5-6 small bags which made it difficult for one person to hold the entire load.
All these problems were enough to make the travel via bus an uphill task, now comes the evil called time, to rub salt into the wounds of the boys. With exactly 15 minutes left to board the bus from the bus stand, the boys discover that there is no E-rickshaw available to transport the luggage from the hostel to the College gate. On any normal day, the hostel alley is flooded with rickshaws ready to take the students from the hostel gate to the academic block (a distance of 900mtrs) or to the main gate (a distance of 1.2 km). The boys try their level best to pick up the luggage till the Main gate, where one can find auto-rickshaws ready to take students to the bus stand. But they could only manage to brisk walk for 200 meters.
At this point of time, Rahul drops all hopes of catching the bus as he finds out that he by mistake has left his laptop bag, with the laptop in it, at his hostel room. Leaving the bag was not an option because 90% of the hostel had already been vacated and is was certain that if he leaves the bag there, the laptop would be taken by some other student or the hostel staff. But Ravi had a military background and he just wasn’t ready to give up on catching the bus. He asked Rahul to go back and fetch his bag and promised to figure out something. Since Rahul was a national football player, Ravi was sure that Rahul would reach the gate in less than 4 minutes and they would catch the bus as it only takes a lump-sum of 8 minutes by an Auto Rickshaw to reach the bus stand from the main gate.
With 12 minutes left Rahul ran towards the hostel, for the laptop bag. Now Ravi was left with 70kgs to fetch and reach 4 minutes to reach the main gate. Ravi takes a glimpse of his surroundings, finds no rickshaw coming. But somehow his eyes find an open rickshaw, used by laborers to carry cement and bricks. Luckily the rickshaw was unchained and no security guards were around. Within seconds he filled the rickshaw with all the stuff and began peddling. This was the first time that the guy from the suburbs of Delhi was riding a rickshaw, with no prior expertise. The peddling was taking a toll on his calf muscles, but catching the bus was more important and he vehemently peddled the rickshaw.
Calamity struck again and the chain of the Rickshaw fell out of place and he wasn’t able to mend it. He had only managed to reach halfway and started cursing his luck. But the fighter in him wasn’t ready to take defeat. Presence of mind was dying out but he decided to give his last try. With 8 minutes left to board, he took out his phone and called his future roommate, Saurav, whose parents were in town to take him back to Delhi. Luckily his driver was available and he agreed to come at such a short notice and pick both of them and leave them to the bus stop. As soon as he cut the call, it crossed Ravi’s mind that the luggage would not fit in any random car and it would require an SUV or lorry for sure. Within a minute Saurav reached the spot in his SUV and Ravi was relieved to see this. In the meantime, Rahul also managed to reach the rendezvous point and finally, they managed to fit the entire luggage in the car. Since Saurav’s luggage was also in the car as he was also vacating his hostel, Ravi and Rahul had to keep some of the luggage in their laps.
With 6 minutes left the car zoomed out of the college gates and moved in the direction of the bus stand. The driver was engaging the traffic just as a cop’s car in pursuit of an offender’s car. With tension filled in the atmosphere and pin drop silence in the car, Saurav breaks the silence and assures that the boys will reach the bus stop in time. Rahul and Ravi give a hopeless laugh, as they think that they won’t be able to catch the bus. But Saurav is full of optimism and says that if they don’t catch the bus in Patiala, then they will drive behind the bus and catch it in Rajpura (30 km from Patiala, serves as the first halt of the bus).
The driver tries his best and reaches the bus stop, but is just a minute late. The boys locate the bus and find it to be slowly moving out of the parking area. The driver pulls in ahead of the bus and just like in an action movie brings the bus to a complete halt. The conductor gets down and starts shouting at the driver. But the driver cooks up a story and the boys are finally able to board the bus. They apologize to the conductor, driver and other passengers and finally lay back on their seats. Rahul calls his mother and tells her about the whole adventure they had undergone and requested her to come and pick him up at Delhi’s bus stand. Meanwhile, Ravi, the day’s man in action, finds the Air-conditioned wind to be relieving and doses off.
This story depicts that no matter how wrong things might go, if your will is strong, you will surely accomplish your goal.
Image Sources (in clockwise order from rickshaw to bus)