Tuesday, December 6, 2016

#MyTrainStory - I Saw God in a Hoodie

This would normally be considered as the Hood of God:

However, I am referring to God in a Hoodie. More specifically - in a Raincoat Hoodie which looks more like this:

I was in the Maharashtra section of the Western Ghats for 2 days in July, 2016. One of the objectives of being there was to take a photo of a train traversing through the Bhor Ghat in the Monsoon. After a lot of asking around I was shown - what the locals considered to be one of the best spots to see a train climbing up the Ghat. The spot may have been perfect but I could not even see the track through the heavy mist, low clouds and lashing rain. I did not even know the direction in which to look for the track - it was so densely misty. The weather had been very bad through the 2 days I spent here. This was my last chance to get lucky!

The vantage spot was just behind a small and old temple (said to be about 600 years old) called the Waghjai Temple. Waghjai is possibly the local representation of Goddess Durga.I left my vantage point and went to the temple. I prayed to the Goddess to be given a chance to photograph this old scene from my mind's eye. I then returned to the same vantage point.

As I was on the way to the vantage point I saw a man - in a raincoat hoodie. He had trekked up to the spot where I was from a lower point on the ghat. I asked him if was local and if he could help me. He said he was not local but could help. I asked him for the direction in which to look to see the railway track on Bhor Ghat. He pointed out and said 'look in that direction!' The direction that he pointed out had no visibility of even the hill - the railway track was just a molehill in comparison. I then thought that my prayer needed to work to clear the weather and place a train on the track.

The man in the hoodie then said, "I can hear the hooting of a train!". I quickly set-up my camera and looked up. As I looked up the weather had cleared completely over the area that I wanted visibility and I got a splendid view of the Bhor Ghat with a Python of the Indian Railway (as long goods trains are called) emerging from Tunnel No. 48.

(Click on the photo to enlarge: The Train emerging from Tunnel No.48)

The rain had also stopped. I shot about 10 images in the next two or three minutes as the train emerged from the tunnel stayed in clear view for a short while and then disappeared into the mist. The mountains got cloaked once again by low hanging clouds and it started pouring again.

(Click on the photo to enlarge: The Train on Bhor Ghat)

Sagar Billimoria ( he mentioned his name in the very brief conversation between the train emerging from the tunnel and disappearing into the misty mountains) was nowhere to be seen.

If it wasn't God, it was certainly God's messenger in a hoodie.