The experience that travel brings along is something that nothing else can provide you with. Trains used to be my lifeline, while my stay in Odisha. Half of the day was spent either in them or waiting for one at the railway station. People, Language and adjustments are what you are most exposed to. You crib, you complain, you enjoy and You learn. Learn a lot.

Learning is that one aspect that we only realize on hindsight. Like they say, “You realize the true value of something, when you don’t have it”.

There are of course innumerable things and instances that may be put to light in my quest to divulge about the things that I’ve learnt upon, but I’ll limit myself to the most basic and frequently occurring events.

Travelling on unreserved seats demands a war-like situation where you need to prepare a strategy to outdo the others in your quest for a claim to the seat. Using a rumaal/newspaper has been the traditional way, Indians have been doing it for ages. But this quest has many shades, which the spectrum of things travel brings as a package.

I’ve faced this situation, many a times in trains or even in buses, if there is one thing that we just cannot leave (apart from our belongings, be it our children, wives or our luggage) is the seat in an unreserved compartment. Even to the extent of not budging an inch even for a disabled or even a women!! Yes, its true.

Give away your seat

Numerous instances have added “faith” to this belief of mine, which baffled me then, and continues to do. Every time.

One day while travelling in a bus, enjoying the brush of cool Bangalorean wind through the window, in a packed bus. I end up looking inside the bus, only to find that a blind man standing, trying to hold onto a seat. I just couldn’t stop myself. I quickly got up from my seat, only to make my co-passenger sitting on the other seat feel a little uncomfortable. Watching me leave, others rushed in, to occupy the seat I was leaving open.

Pacifying the war-for-seat, I made the blind man sit, while people just looked on.  I’m not sure that whether they felt bad for the blind man, or for not getting the seat.

Numerous times, the same incident has happened, when I made way for a woman standing in the midst of the crowded buses or trains.

I just hope, that at least one of them, just one, would have taken a cue from it, and in future would allow others the privilege of these “seats”. Even though many seats  or even a full coach of a train is earmarked for women/senior citizens/ disables, yet we can see people who clearly do not belong to any of the aforementioned categories for which the seats have been reserved, take advantage of.

Giving away your seat to elderly/disabled/women is not a big deal, try doing once. Achaa lagta hai.

Sometimes, even helping others get a place to sit also helps. Maybe some won’t listen to you, but at least trying out for something good isn’t that bad. Right ?

This is a very simple act that each of us can follow, it won’t take much. I am of the firm belief that if you do good to others, good will happen to you as well. So, just don’t think twice before leaving your seat for others.

You are the best person to teach children the value of doing right. But you too have to learn from the world around you.

This blog post was part of the I Saw, I learnt initiative of TATA CAPITAL.

I am sharing what I Saw and I Learnt at in association with DoRight .