Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Moony's night duty slambook!

Holy Cows! How can they? Their working hours might annoy even nocturnal birds, but they stay healthy, calm and poised. Here i am feeling all fuzzy, kind of inebriated and hallucinating as i am writing this after a night shift. I have been pushed to the dark night world where the shrill whistle of trains, lousy humdrum of passengers and dull buzz of spooky night creatures abound. So, here is this moony's checklist of staying awake all night at work-



1. FOCUS
Try focusing! As minutes tick past midnight, your monitor definitely appears blurred, your keyboard resembles a cute love cushion and your swivel chair envelopes you in a close cuddle. Don't fall for that! Try to focus. Concentrate. Look at the nearest gentleman typing away like mad. You might even hallucinate his balding upper cranium a crystal ball. Try to read your future. Or better still, if you work in a passenger system like poor me, fun is on hand! Compare and contrast the specimens on view. Take your own sweet time, peer at the checked shirt, long uncut nails and bloodshot eyes. May be your distant forefathers appear on the vanishing checks on shirts. Who knows, you might even attain Nirvana fo-cussing(!) and cribbing on the gentlemen who rostered you for the night!

2. TAKE A BREAK

You are- after all, human. Nothing wrong in taking a break. Get up from the chair, walk to the loo, spend a few..ahem..precious moments half asleep inside and emerge from it in a brisk walk. Wander from one seat to the other. If it is an all women shift- Ladies, start your tongues wagging. And mind you, don't spare anyone, including the boss. As juice overflows from the grape vine, you may even feel intoxicated with all the "who's sleeping with who" stories. And by the time you feel you are satisfied with the well deserved break, you can take your next sojourn.

3. GINGER CHAAI

Have a cup of ginger chaai at 2 am! The hot and spicy chaai can work wonders to keep you awake. Take a small walk to the nearest tea kiosk, even if that means trampling on a sleeping army of tyrants who refuse to budge a millimetre in their sleep. And oh, be careful in not slipping on the banana peels and kids' piddle that threaten to drown the entire station! Revel and rejoice at the coocoo sounds, the erratic and annoying shrill whistles of engines, watch fist-fighting families and just relax!

4. PICK A FIGHT

Still feeling dull and sleepy? Why worry? You can always pick a fight with the passenger. Ask for change.  Never pick one with the 'i know all, you know nothing' types. Your prey will land straight at your counter with a 500 rupee note asking for a platform ticket. Thank Heavens! You can spend the next fifteen minutes asking him for a three rupee, ten rupee, fifty rupee or even a hundred rupee. He is definitely not going to have any. Watch him hunt for the non existent change in his pant pockets, shirt pockets, wallet, 'secret' pocket. Send him scurrying for change. He will be back after ten minutes having gulped down a glass of typical 'railway' special watery coffee or tea that might give him a happy gala time in the morning loo! Still unsuccessful? Always try to issue ticket to the second lady in the queue, wearing that angelic smile of yours, when the first lady hunts for a change. A full fledged cat fight- guaranteed!!!
Catfight- Vintage!
Night shifts at railway stations can be extremely stressful, if there are trains all night and if we end up with a CM who refuses to reduce bus fares and a PM who refuses to increase rail fares. No one can ever know how refreshing it is to see your relieving clerk arriving, in the backdrop of early morning sun-rays that filter through the window panes. Ha...there arrives the next slave;)

P.S.- Gods must be crazy and i must be extremely bitchy while writing this post:P
P.P.S.- I wish i had leprosy, i hate it every time a bugger rubs hands when handing over money! Or can anyone suggest a hand mask resembling a leper's hand? 
P.P.P.S.- Dedicated to the counter clerk Mr Sound Gopal who seldom gives tickets but keeps rambling on and on and on. Next night shift, i might hack you to death, MIND IT!!! RASCALA!!!

28 comments:

  1. hahaha.. good one!
    I can imagine the humdrum at the station. Night shifts everywhere are always stressful!

    ♥ www.thegirlatfirstavenue.com

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    1. They definitely are! Thanks for the comment, TGAFA :)

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  2. A good humourous post. You surely have flair for writing humourous posts. Keep them coming

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  3. I am a night person but I can't work at night. I can surely relax or watch tv. But, the way you described it. It was so amusing. I think creativity opened its gates for you post mid night.

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    1. Hahaha...sure, yes, Saru! Thanks for the comment!

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  4. You can make readers smile with your yarns!!!

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    1. Thank Heavens I don't make them smile with my yawns :P

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  5. Such a delightfully funny post- chuckled through out.
    Btw are you sure Sound Gopal doesn't read your posts?

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    1. I detest when perverts rub hands while exchanging cash...And even though I have never worked in night shifts, 'whos sleeping with who' will prevent those winks for me. A cat fight will give me many sleepless nights.

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    2. Purba...hopefull he doesn't read these kind of posts;) I am over...if he sees this :P

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    3. Alka..thank you for the comment :)

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  6. hi
    a nice funny post.
    1.Focus- Evn in yester yrs our text books looked blurred ..
    2 Take a brk-"romba nallaa irukku unga tea break chat rasanai"
    3. EK cup chai- provided by rly s or out of ur own wallet?.hop the chai is gud enuf to make u sleep (if u do nt gt sleep until then".

    have u ever read ONE NITE AT A CALL CENTER by chetan bhagat///will these two go hand in hand?

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    1. Haven't read Bhagat's book...will try to, Anonymous. Thanks for the comment :)

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  7. LOL, there has been a lot you've been going through. Perhaps, the trains and the travelers should learn to sleep at night and travel during day.



    Cheers,
    Blasphemous Aesthete

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    1. Ahhh...BA! So thoughtful of you. I wish people learn from you!

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  8. Amazing and hysterical post of yours. I personally don't like night shifts, but you have looked at with a complete different perspective which is very interesting.

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    1. Thanks Elvirah! Welcome to my blog :)

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  9. A really hilarious post. It is indeed a very stressful job.
    I cannot imagine what you must be going through. When do you get to do day shift?
    Would that be any better?

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    1. Thanks for the comment, Rama. We do shifts in cycles, no escaping :(

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  10. He! He! Good story telling!! I have only experienced night shifts of a different kind-which every mom goes through.:)

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    1. Aynzan...that shift is far worse than this :P

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  11. Reminded of my days, err... nights at announcing, station duty and further back, sleeper and squad. Nothing exciting at the first three (except dislocations at announcing). Duty in sqd was bit adventurous, playing hide n seek with the vendors n trying to find out the 'karuvaatu koodai's hidden under the seat or inside toilets, changing bogies on moving train (at stations) praying that the door of the other bogie shd not be locked from the inside (during night trains the passengers go to sleep even b'fore train starts, so can't call for help till the next stn comes). Waking up sleeping passengers for tkts and getting a 'heartful' (they can't curse us openly na) from them. I enjoyed my nights, every night different adventure, but hate the early mornings when you feel terribly terribly asleep and go sleep the entire day. P.S. Our health-drink to keep awake, the one and only 'chaya'.

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    1. Ha1 Perils of night shifts:( Glad you escaped unhurt;)

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  12. Hahahaha....Pick up a Fight is epic!!

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    1. Zackandme...;) We women know it better, don't we?:P

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  13. I like your P.P.S. the most! I have had a long tryst with the Southern Railway as a passenger, and now I know what it is like at the receiving end!

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    1. The P.P.S.? hahaha! Yes, that does sound funny when I read it again;) Thanks for the comment, Sis :)

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