What To Do On A Train by Neela Kumar

It’s inevitable that as a student you’re going to need to use a train to get to places. Whether it’s a daily commute, visiting friends in other universities or the long journeys back home. Once you’ve travelled a few times and the novelty of a new journey has worn off, these can become quite boring and there’s only so many times Facebook can be refreshed before you’re wondering what to do on a train journey. Depending on what type of person you are, there is, however, plenty that you can do to pass the time spent travelling so here are a few ideas:

If you’re a creative person:
Your brain is bubbling with inspiration and no where to vent it, but a train is a really good place to do just that. You could take a sketch book and draw a view of what’s outside the window (this may become difficult on fast moving trains) or even draw a portrait or caricature of someone else on the train. If you’re more into writing than art, then it’s the ideal place to get some inspiration for characters – J K Rowling created Harry Potter on a train. Different people with different personalities and values who don’t know each other in a confined space is a great idea for a story! You never really know what other people are thinking or where they are coming from and traveling to, but it’s always fun to speculate.

If you’re a busy person:
You may think that train journeys are a waste of valuable time where you could be doing other important tasks that need to be completed, but it’s actually a really good time to just wind down. It’s time you get to yourself and you can relax and de-stress. You can catch up on any work that is needed (most trains have power points to plug in chargers) on laptops or tablets. Plan out and rearrange a schedule for the next week or so, now that there’s more time to think clearly. It’s also a really good time to reply to forgotten emails or texts that you haven’t got round to yet. After all that, the time will fly by and you’ll be at your destination!

If you’re a sociable person:
The time on a train journey is a good time to catch up with friends either by phone calls (but make sure you’re considerate of other passengers and not being too loud) or texting them, but if you’re more of a face to face person then look around. There are loads of other passengers who you could start up conversation with, and though not everyone may want to talk, there will be some that will want to get to know you. Of course, you have to be careful and make sure you’re in a busy carriage before you start chatting to a stranger, and don’t let them know any personal information or details about you, but you could on the other hand make new friends or even find romance? It’s a good way to find out more about other people and their lives and pass the time.

If you’re a solitary person who wants a peaceful journey:
There will always be places on a train where it’s quiet and some trains even have quiet carriages for those who don’t want to be disturbed. If you just want to be left alone on your journey then put your earphones in because listening to music can pass the time. What about another hobby such as reading or playing a game on your phone or laptop. The time alone is also really good for just contemplating and thinking and looking out the window is always relaxing. If we all took some time to look up from our phones, we’d notice how scenic some of the views really are, especially cross country routes. There might be some landmarks or famous buildings along the way you haven’t noticed before. Whether it’s a route through the countryside or an urban line, you’ll most likely notice something there that you didn’t before. There may even be some drama on the train, but you don’t have to get involved – just watch people getting on with their lives and be glad that you’re a spectator and not part of it!

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