Bronte Kelso-Marsh has ever so kindly written a blog post for A View From Moving Windows. Bronte Kelso-Marsh is a journalist, photo journalist and writer of Bronte Roams.
It is generally not socially acceptable to press your body against that of a perfect stranger. But on a train these social values are not usually upheld. People step onto the busy carriage and push their way against the bustle of busy people, all in a hurry, going places. Like a gladiator, the people entering the carriage battle their way through the throng of people, only to find their back pressed against the train door, begging silently that they won’t open up behind them, throwing them out again.
When the train takes off with an almighty whoosh, the inhabitants are thrown forward, suddenly falling, proof of Newton’s laws and gravity. Help is sought by grabbing the shoulder of whoever stands next to them, suddenly rendering the stranger an accidental hero, a Good Samaritan, a saviour from a world of embarrassment. And suddenly they’re bonded, comrades in the battle against the throng of people, all battling to get to work, dear friends if only for a minute.
The carriage is a plethora of smells. The lady in the lacy dress smells of flowers, on her way to man the expensive stores in the city. Young girls in tight clothes still smell of vodka and cigarettes, the evidence of the habits of the youth. Women with young children on their hips still smell of coffee and sleep, milk stains still visible on their shirt collars from a morning spent making lunches and managing households. The minutes taken to get to the station are their only respite in the day.
The teenage couple in the aisle kiss, unabashed despite their large audience. Their intertwined bodies are cumbersome to the aisles and the people around them. But their kisses soon break, if only for the young Romeo to offer his Juliette the lone train seat that has become available.
As the train zooms by the world quickly becomes a moving blur. Young children stare out the windows in wonder as their concrete world becomes a moving kaleidoscope of colour. Their knees are balanced carefully on the coloured seats; their mother’s begging them to just sit down properly. But their pleas fall deaf on the ears of a delighted child who stares at wonder at the world which passes them by.