Warning: Long post Ahead !!
From long time I wanted to write about this city Mumbai. But could not get much time to write about this. Finally I am writing about this city.
Since, mine was love cum arranged marriage; I was mentally preparing to leave Bangalore from long time. But whatever the preparation, I could not control my tears, when I left Bangalore. Bangalore is the place, where I was born and brought up. I have got all my friends and relatives staying in Bangalore. It was very hard for me to leave that place :(. At the same time, I was bit scared about Mumbai life also. But PK assured me that I will like Mumbai in sometime. But I didn’t believe in that.
Initially, it was very difficult to adjust to the place. Since, I was in look out for a job and was at home for around two months, I used to get mad. I didn’t have anyone here. PK used to leave to office in the morning and back only in the night. Whole day, I used to stay alone. I used to miss my city like anything.
Then luckily I got a job in CST and was very happy about it. Finally I will be busy. I just can’t forget my first day at the office. I was supposed to go in the train on the first day, as PK was busy with some client meeting. I didn’t have any idea about local train, how they operate, nothing. So PK asked one of his friend SP to drop me by train, as his office was next to my new office. So he got me a ticket and told me to stand in ladies couch. He told that as soon as the train comes, just squeeze and enter the train. He told me to get down in CST, but he didn’t tell me that CST is the last stop. I was totally scared. I was thinking, what if I get into the train and SP is not able to get into the train. How will I know where do I need to get down and other things came to my mind? I never in my wild dream thought that how much rush the train will be.
The announcement started that the train is arriving. I was just getting ready to get into the train. I just remember that the train stopped. But just a blink of my eyes, I was just inside the train. The mad rush at the station just took me inside the train. I was just dumbstruck. I was totally shaken up. I never knew that the train will be so rush and more than that, I never knew that train stops for just some seconds, that’s it. My heart was beating faster. I just took some deep breaths and try to look around what had happened just now.
Inside the train also, it was so much rush was there. Someone hand was on someone’s shoulder, someone’s hair was on someone’s face. I was just worried that I may miss my stop. I think I might have asked around 10 times to women, when will CST stop come. Thankfully that woman had patience and she answered me very smilingly. I think she came to know that I am new to Mumbai.
I don’t know, after that incident, I learned the technique to get into the train. I just loved the train journey. It gave me to meet so many types of people in the train. I became expert in getting into the train. How much ever the rush is, I easily got into the train. But from past two years, I am not using the train, as the office is nearby and there is no train station to my office. I am just missing my train journey like anything. So to compensate that, I travel to Thane once in a month or three months in train :). But still I miss that rush :(. But whoever visits Mumbai, must experience the local train journey.
Secondly I like the way people are. They just do not interfere in other’s life. They are not bothered, what you wear, what you do, with whom you roam, nothing. Everyone just mind their business, which I just like it. No one is just bothered about anyone. So I need not worry about what I wear or what I do. I just like this thing.
The most important I like is the variety of food. Vada Pav, Pav Bhaaji, yummy chats, wow.. just delicious. I think I have tasted most of the maharashtrian food, like sol kadi, kokum juice, missal pav, sabudana kichdi, sabudana vada, Bhakri, Varan Bath, Thalipeeth, kothimbir Vadi, kanda bhaji (onion pakoda), modak, etc. Maharashtrian make awesome Poha (we call it avalakki upma or puff rice upma). The taste is totally different. You don’t get such delicious Poha anywhere. I have tried to make it at home, but that tastes just do not come at all. They make the poha fast also. Whenever, I visit friend’s place, without intimation, within 10 mins, they prepare poha and give it to me. Sometimes, I deliberately go to their house without intimation, so that I get to eat Poha. Just awesome! About chats, I just can go on and on and on. It is just too good. The road side pani puri is just delicious. Also there are some shops which are famous for chats. Prashant corner in Thane and also we get awesome chats and food in Juhu chowpatty. All the food at Juhu is just awesome. Just Value for money. I just can go on and on and on about the food.
Next are lots of places to visit. My favourite spot is marine drive. Just awesome place!! We have to go in the evening to enjoy that place. I usually visit that place in rainy season. It will be totally worth of going there. I just drench in the rain and then have hot bhuttas and then hot cup of tea. After that, just sit along the sea-shore with PK and look into each other’s eyes
and just get lost in thoughts. Awwwww, just total bliss :D.
Other places are Gateway of India, ISKON Temple, linking road, fashion street, CST, churchgate, mahalaxmi temple, siddi vinayak temple, juhu beach, Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Nehru Science Center, Elephanta Caves. I think whoever comes to Mumbai, they should visit all these places.
Next attraction is the Malls. You get a Mall in every road. There are N numbers of malls in this city. You get variety of products also. There is Fashion Street and linking road where we get variety of clothes, bags, sandals at a very cheap rate. I think most of the tourists do shopping at this area. I also been there many times and I have got variety of clothes at damn cheap rate.
It has got his flaws also, like there are N number of problems with Rickshaws, no one just follow the traffic rules, too much of traffic jam always, but I think these things are there in other cities also. So we can just forget all these flaws.
The most important thing about this place is spirit of Mumbai people. Whatever happens, people do not get disturbed. They just take everything in spirit. The live example is the attack on Taj hotel by terrorists in 2008. I think first two days, the city was disturbed, but after that the city was normal and looked like nothing happened at all. I even came to office next day. But sometimes, this is a disadvantage also, as some people take this spirit for wrong reason. Whatever, it is, I just like the spirit of Mumbai. Also, people here welcome outsiders whole heartedly and make them comfortable here. Whoever, comes here, no one will go bare hand. They get benefitted for good. I have heard a saying that Goddess Mahalaxmi who resides in this city does not send any people in bare hand.
Now, I think I can say that I have become a part of this city. I just can’t imagine leaving this place at any cost. I don’t think we will be leaving this place anytime. I just love this place like anything. I just can’t hear anyone talking ill about this city. I don’t mind to fight with that person, whoever it is, I just can’t tolerate to hear anything wrong about this city. I think after I came to this city, I have become bold and handle any situation bravely. I don’t fear of anything. I can travel in the night without any fear.
I can just go on and on and on about this city.
To really experience what I have said, you have to stay at Mumbai. Then you can understand what exactly the feeling is. Finally, I can proudly say that I belong to this place.