Waiting on a train

by kenpodragon 7 Replies latest jw friends

  • kenpodragon

    I went to a old train station today and looked around at the antiques and old tools of days gone by. As I walked around to the platform that once held passengers departing to many cities down the track, I came upon a old woman who was just sitting there looking sad. I set down and spoke to her to see if everything was okay, and she smiled. She kind of chuckled for a moment, and started to speak, "I am fine, I am just waiting for the train to arrive to take me to new town." To which I was a little shocked, did this lady not know that the train had not passed by here in years. That the building was in fact just a museum of something that was no longer used. I spoke gently, as I did not want to upset her, "mam, how long have you been waiting on this train?" She shuffled through a book and then thought for a minute, "you know I do not know, it seems like it started some time ago ... but the wait is not important, only the train which will come and get me soon. I have relatives in that new town already, waiting for me. They used to stay on this platform with me every day, but something happened and they ended up getting to that town before me and without the train." I set puzzled for a moment, was this gentle woman really thinking straight and seeing memories that really happened? Could she really have not noticed in all these years that the trains never arrived anymore, and that the building had not been used? Were there ever really other passengers who waited and then left? I could not figure this out and so I spoke again, "Mam, why do you want to go to this new town so bad that you would wait here and never leave for so long?" She smiled again and seemed excited that I asked, "Well in the new town, there is only love and only happiness and the people all treat each other with kindness and good hearts ... doesn't that sound wonderful?" Well I had to agree and I nodded in agreement, "Yes that does sound wonderful, but how is it you have waited so long and not tried to make this town such a place while you waited?" She seemed puzzled that I would ask such a question, "Well the other town is already like this, and the mayor has done the work for me. If I stay here, one person could not change the whole town ... so here I will wait for the train to my new town." I felt a sadness in this conversation and wondered just how long she was here. I got up for a minute and began to walk away, but she spoke again "you do not believe the train is coming do you?" I tried to be respectful but I said what I thought, "no I don't this building is a museum and the tracks do not go any further then 50 yards either direction ... no train will arrive and no new town is ahead." She seemed to accept my answer, but followed with, "It will come and you will see, but unless you wait on this platform you will not get to go to the new town and you will be stuck here in this place without me." Then she settled in more looking down the tracks, apparently not noticing that they lead to no where and could service no train. I did not want to argue with her and I felt she really believed what she said, so I went back into the museum and started to leave. Then a man walked up and asked me if I talked to the lady on the platform, to which I said I had. He shock his head in sadness and spoke, "for 40 years she has waited out there, waiting for that train. I have fed her, and clothed her, and tried to bring her in ... but there she waits looking for that train. I do not know what to do, she will not listen and no matter what she always tells me she is afraid to leave in case the train comes while she is gone, and leaves without her." I could feel his sadness, but what could I do. I walked out and went back home. It was a week or so later when I was looking through the paper that I saw that this woman had died. The obituary was short, but it told a lot. It said this woman, who lived 70 years spent 40 years waiting for the train to the new town. She told everyone about it, and said it would arrive soon. She died waiting on the platform that was closed 60 years ago, and in her hand was the train ticket she cherished so dear. Yet their never was truly a train, only a track that stretched only far enough to see from the platform and because she never left that platform, she never saw that it was nothing more then a track that came from no where and exited to the same place. ....... So how many of your relatives are still waiting on that platform, for their train to new town? Just my thought Dragon

    Edited by - kenpodragon on 24 August 2002 0:47:20

  • Prisca

    I have several still sitting on that station platform, waiting for that train that will arrive "any time soon". No matter how much I or other relatives have tried to tell them kindly that the train isn't arriving, they still want to sit there regardless.

    Maybe they are afraid that if they walk away from the platform, the train will come just as they believed?

  • DJ

    Viewing my family like the old woman in your story is the way I am able to cope with them. Sad, isn't it. The old station all falling apart and they still believe. Sad


  • onacruse

    Dragon, very sublime. Reminds me of Twilight Zone. I stood on that platform for 38 years. My relatives still do, but many are no longer on their tiptoes.

    Pris, yep, that haunting fear. I must admit, on 9/11 I had a convulsion of anxiety/fear/apprehension.

    Old habits die hard.

  • kenpodragon


    Sometimes all the stuff that happens in the religion and the way the people act, makes me think I am in the Twilight Zone. I swear I can hear the music.


  • SYN

    During my younger years, I stood on that platform too. Then I jumped off of it into a sea of naked worldly women. *smacks lips*

  • waiting

    Thank you, Syn, for the chuckle.

    Btw, my name "waiting" refers to the fact that I'm still waiting for a response from the WTBTS after they were kind enough to tell our CO not to talk to us - that they would "handle us." And our CO was dumb enough to tell us that.

    It's been almost 3 years now, and I'm still waiting for the WT's response.....although I left the platform shortly after our CO opened his stupid mouth.

    I had been on the platform shuffling my feet for 30 looooooonnnnnnnng years. *sigh*.

    At least we've not died on the platform!


  • Scully

    Thanks for sharing that story kenpodragon.

    Trains were a big theme in my childhood because my father worked for a railway company. He commuted to and from work via train. When we travelled across the country, it was by train. When I went to community college a fair distance from home, I commuted by train every day, an hour each way.

    The main station where my dad worked is very close to being musuem-quality, if it hasn't been converted already. It's a beautiful old building in the middle of the city, full of nostalgia, but now sparse in passenger traffic. I used to love being there, but now it makes me sad to see its grandeur fade to a thing of the past.

    Your story brought a tear to my eye. I thank you.

    Love, Scully

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