Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The good Samaritan

- by KParthasarathi 16 Jan 2009

I was travelling to Howrah station by taxi. I had to reach Chennai the second day without fail. The pressing work in the office did not permit me to leave the earlier day. Even as the taxi was nearing Esplanade I felt giddy. I could not sit up with everything swirling upside down. I felt an urge to throw up. The driver turned to look at me anxiously but I motioned him to proceed. By the time the vehicle reached Howrah station, the giddiness became worse. An old porter nearing sixty came towards the car and sized up the situation in a jiffy after a small chat with the driver. “Don’t worry, I will carefully take you to Coramandel Express and put you in your berth. Can you get down from the car?” he asked. I had a heart attack a couple of years back. I was worried but was not sure whether this was connected with it. It was the first time I had this problem. But I was determined to reach Chennai come what may. I struggled to come out but could not stand. He took my luggage in one hand and with his other arm around me, he gently took me a few steps away and made me sit on a raised kerb. He requested me to wait assuring me that he would be back within five minutes. He came soon with a trolley and asked me sit on it along with my box. When I declined he said “Sir, don’t you want to go to Chennai? We have only thirty minutes more. Please sit and do not bother about others. You recline on your box.”
I was at the entrance of the compartment within five minutes. I could not get up due to vertigo. I was still reclining on the box on the trolley. Some of the passersby looked at me amusingly while some had anxious look in their faces. It was then one young man of around 27 stopped by my side and asked “Any problem, Sir? May I help you board the train. What is the coach and seat number? There is not much time left. Would you like to undertake the journey in this condition or cancel it?”
I managed to tell him that I must travel without fail and should be at Chennai on the second day. He took me in his arms and along with the porter virtually lifted me to take me to my berth. He said” Do not worry. I am also travelling to Chennai. I am travelling in the second adjacent compartment behind this. I will request the TTE to allot a berth next to me by exchanging. I will come in half an hour. Just lie down and relax.” I could not thank the porter adequately but stuffed a hundred rupee note in his grateful hands.
After about forty five minutes the young man came to my side and said “ I have managed to get the lower berth for you. I will be in the middle berth. So everything should be fine. Please do not worry.” He escorted me along with my luggage to the allotted seat. As I was still giddy I could not talk to him much. He brought me coffee which I could not drink. I slept off the whole day. I was feeling slightly better. The next morning I was feeling slightly better but could not sit up for long. That young man vacated his seat to enable me lie down. He sat here and there. He got me coffee and some lunch and frequently enquired of my condition. I was touched by his kindness and helpful nature. Being unwell I could not talk to him much except for the expression of thanks once a while.
When the train reached Chennai Central, he offered to drop me at my home on his way to his place. I told him that I was expecting my nephew and thanked him again for his good nature. He thrust his card in my pocket and left when he saw my nephew. When my wife and daughter who had reached earlier saw my zombie look became worried and made anxious queries. I had finalised on a good match for my daughter and the man chosen was to come along with his parents and sisters for seeing my daughter in the evening. I was therefore particular about not missing my train. The local doctor said everything was fine and gave me a tablet. I became fine once I was with my family.
It was 5pm. My daughter had already visited a beauty parlour and was looking at her dazzling best. Sweets and snacks were ready. The jasmine and rose flowers spread their fragrance along with joss sticks to create the right ambience. We heard the noise of a car drawing up. We all stood up in readiness to welcome them. It was then I received the utmost surprise when I saw the young Samaritan who helped me in the train entering my house with parents and siblings. He stepped forward and asked “Uncle, how are you now? Feeling better? What a pleasant surprise to meet you here.”
My wife and others looked at me bewildered. When I explained how I could make the trip with the help of the young man, there were peals of laughter. I expressed my apology to the young man about my not having seen his card. Needless to say, he became my son in law.


  1. A beautiful story with a wonderful conclusion. As you have depicted here, life has an ingenious way of usually connecting the right people.I have enjoyed reading your story, Parthasarathi. My best wishes to you.

  2. Thanks ,Ayesha , for your apt comments

  3. Excellent. You were feeling a little uneasy for a few days. How are you now?

  4. as usual, touching mr. kp. may you be blessed with good health and i hope you are fine now. god bless.

  5. Very nice story. The world needs more good samaritans like this.

  6. Thanks Girivasan,Shravan and Vidya for reading the story and leaving the comments.

  7. Amazing as usual, your stories send a wave of thrill and excitement. All the very best to you.

  8. Thanks a lot (A new beginning)
    Pl tell me how to address you

  9. A wonderful story. One cannot but help to cease at the marvels of the strangest coincidences that life brings. Especially when it marks an entry of another jewel to the crown as that of a close family member. Author has expressed in his poignant style yet another soul stirring write up.

  10. Sweta,thank you so much for your continued support and praise