similar extremes

somewhere in between, with lot of variabilities

Babu P. Mohan

2/11/20231 min read

The suitcases were out of our vehicle and we made our way to platform number one. It was the same platform every time, every year, where Coromandel express arrived and departed from Visakhapatnam railway station. It was our annual summer vacation trip to Madurai to spend time with my grandparents, relatives & cousins.

And, like every time, we were exactly 3 hours early! My father is very particular about timeliness. I guess I am too to certain extent. However, it used to be a pain to be at the railway station 3 hours early. Every time. Like every year, we would buy some chips, water and if I got lucky, I would grab a new edition of my favorite fortnightly comic ‘Tinkle’. Once done, me and my father would walk from one extreme of the station platform to the other extreme.

Each direction would approximately take 20-30 minutes and we would roughly make 5 to 6 rounds before the arrival of our train, that is if it was on time. And every time I did this, I would think how similar both ends of the platform were. The sun shade would end well before the end of the platform. There would be a red-light signal besides the train tracks. It was hard for me not to notice the similarity of both ends with variabilities in between the platform.

As I grew older, through my school life and into medical college, I would fondly recollect the time spent with my father walking the platform. I still do it, if I am at the station early. The similarity of the extremes. Like life. Things are kinda similar at the extremes. Too much is not good, too less is also not good. Someone who does not ask any question either knows everything or knows nothing. Don't be too happy at success and don't be too sad with failures.

Some where in between with variabilities is where normalcy is, life is. Not at the extremes, the similar extremes.