I was traveling in the Himalayas for seven weeks. The day I was to return to Pune, you answered a question I had sent in eight weeks before, about feeling hopeless. While you were answering it, I was receiving the answer experientially, waiting on the Varanasi train platform for twenty-eight hours. Each hour it was announced that the train would arrive in one hour; but each time there was no train – only more people, more heat, more noise, more smell, and more flies. I finally truly gave up hope, put my straw hat down over my eyes, and cried. When I looked up again, the flies looked psychedelic with the sun shining through their wings, the sound of the trains and the chai wallahs were music to my ears, and my heart was full of love for everyone. Osho, your sense of timing is uncanny. How do you do it?
Prem Indivar, it is a secret, but one day I can whisper it in your ears – just you have to keep the promise not to tell it to anyone else. You have to continue to say, “He has not said it to me yet.” And they will understand that I have already said it.
A man was standing exactly where you have been on the Varanasi station, seeing the train off, and he observed someone near him shouting at one of the departing passengers, “Good-bye, your wife was a great lay! Your wife was a great lay!” He was stunned.
After the train pulled away, he went over to the man who had done the shouting and asked, “Did I hear you correctly? Did you tell that man his wife was a great lay?” The other man shrugged his shoulders. “It is not really true,” he said, “but I don’t want to hurt his feelings.”
“What is the difference between America and England?” asked the teacher. “I know,” said Hymie. “America has Ronald Reagan, Johnny Cash, Bob Hope, and Stevie Wonder. England has Margaret Thatcher, no cash, no hope – and no wonder.”
So don’t be worried about what happened on the Varanasi station platform. This is usual in this country. I have been traveling for many years around the country; I must have waited on every platform. A few incidents will help you:
One day, for the first time in my life, I found the train coming exactly in time. That is absolutely a unique occasion in India. It simply does not happen. I was so much amazed and felt so grateful that I went to the driver to thank him and I told him, “This is my first experience that the train has come exactly in time. You must be the best driver in the country.”
He said, “Don’t make me feel ashamed.”
I said, “Why?”
He said, “This is yesterday’s train. It is exactly twenty-four hours late!”
Just at that time, when he told me that it is twenty-four hours late, I said, “My God.” The stationmaster was standing by my side. I asked him, “If trains are going to be late – and I have been traveling for twenty years – then what is the point of publishing timetables?”
He said, “You are a strange man. Without timetables how will we know how much the train is late?”
I said, “That’s right; I had not thought about it.”
He said, “Everything would get mixed up. The timetable is published so that you can know how much the train is going to be late.”