“In a split second there was a deafening boom which drove everyone into a state of hysteria”

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One Thursday in the winter of 2011 I took a late train home (Soweto) from school. It was fully packed so much so there was virtually no standing space. This is the last evening train that carries Sowetans who work/study during the day. As such,everyone who boards it has one wish in mind: “To get home asap.” One dangerous thing that relieves these passengers is to see the train moving at a speed higher than the usual. It so happened that we had such a driver.

He was so “destination driven” only slowed down the train instead of stopping it when he got to each station. People old and young,male and female had to get alight Mcguyver style. Not so long after did we reap the consequences of our ecstasy. When. We were moving between 2 stations,Our driver flying above the recommended speed moved into a lane that was occupied by another train which was waiting for the traffic lights to give it the green. Since we were coming from the curved end,our driver wasn’t aware of what lied ahead. Neither we. In a split

Not so long after did we reap the consequences of our ecstasy. When we were moving between 2 stations, our driver flying above the recommended speed moved into a lane that was occupied by another train which was waiting for the traffic lights to give it the green. Since we were coming from the curved end, our driver wasn’t aware of what lied ahead. Neither were we. In a split second there was a deafening boom which drove everyone into a state of hysteria. The driver had bumped into a stationary train and I was 2 coaches away from his. What I remember was myself suffocating (by the way I’m asthmatic) under a number of

What I remember was myself suffocating (by the way I’m asthmatic) under a number of people as everyone were trying to make their way out of the train. To cut the long story, I was in shock and highly disoriented that I had to walk about 10km home along the railroad with a dislocated knee without realising. Although there were no deaths, a good number of people became permanently paralysed in that incident. My senses only came back the following morning, and that’s when I realised how short and delicate our lives and abilities are. This taught me to be kind and love people genuinely and serve my purpose for living while I still can. Do good to those who love you and also to those who don’t.

My own saying is “Empty yourself of all the virtues you have before life empties you.”