In two very entertaining letters, two readers waxed eloquent on the unreliability of men, women and trains when it came to punctuality.
In the first letter, titled ‘Get them going with male names’, reader D. Gunasekara of Agalawatta suggested that we rename our trains ‘Ruhunu Kumaraya’, ‘Uttara Raja’, ‘Podi Banda’ and so on. His point was that it was misleading to name trains after women because women are notorious for their unpunctuality. And they take ages to get ready to go on a journey.
In reply, writer Arul said masculine names would not solve the problem either because males were in the habit of stopping to chat with friends or have a drink on the way home, and invariably got home late.
He said it would be better to name our trains after strong animals that move with energy. He suggested naming our trains ‘Yal Bull’ and ‘Ruhunu Buffalo’and so on!
But Arul added that whatever the names, our trains would always be late. This is a proven fact.
I am sure Arul will agree that it would be more to the point to name our trains after the slowest creatures we can find. How about a ‘Yal Ibba’ (tortoise) or a ‘Ruhunu Golubella’ (snail)?
Those names would better reflect the Railway Department’s record for performance and punctuality.