Monday, January 25, 2010

Footloose in Bombay

I always get nervous before travelling in local. Local = train in Bombay. Its scary even before I climb in. The crowd, the fatal casualties, the rush, the confusion and the chaos.

But then, every time I travel by local, I get down from it happier. I like the woman's only compartment, the "thank god no one will grope me here" feeling. Standing by the door, watching stations pass idly by, observing the women around, their chit-chat, the hawkers who jump in to sell clips and chips and hankies and makeup and toys and notebooks and pencils and what not. Life here is very fast, it just goes on and on. And people try to jam everything in those meager twenty-four hours. And this fact is most visible in the women's compartment. There are three women sitting opposite to me and all three are talking on phone - and their tone show they are talking with a loved one. Husband, boyfriend? They keep talking till their station arrives, and then they put the caller on hold, push their way through the crowd and get off the train..and I can see them walking past my window - they have resumed the phone conversations. Yes, all three of them.

In a corner, two friends are gossiping and giggling. One of them rummages in her bag and tugs out a brand new suit (I can see the tag) and shows off it to her friend, who makes all the appropriate noises and comments. Another woman is arranging -on her phone -for someone to pick up her son from school, while someone else is looking for jobs.

I like to observe them, imagine their life, the constant running about, the struggles, the pain, the love, the laughter...and its as if life is a kaleidoscope in front of my eyes...



Bombay. I like Bombay. Not Mumbai. Nopes.

Walking walking walking. Aimlessly on Bombay's streets. Stopping whenever something catches my fancy. Evening at Marine Drive and a wonderful breeze - feel like living again.

Eating at a roadside eating joint. Clicking photos through its bay windows. Looking wistfully at balloons and a balloon covered taanga :P

That feeling you get in a new city - discovering it, loving its freshness...

Bombay. I think I will like you. Though I am trying not too. Because you, too, are not permanent.
















44 comments:

The Sage said...

good good... nice to know you are liking bombay...
and don't try not to... nothung is permanent but our thoughts...

rain girl said...

sometimes are think even my thoughts are not permanent...subjective to change, bending according to situations...fleeting like the wind...

Anonymous said...

i ve tried so hard to....to describe Bombay....Mumbai...and everytime I tried it gets so much into my veins..I almost go too numb to express..
Awesome observations..I wud ve scribbled down almost the same instances..Thanks:)
-khamakha

Amrita said...

rain girl! I love the pics. I mean, love.
I dont know about loving a city because its not permanent. Because you can't love a city that way. You just love, and if ever it changes, you have the memories. And so many of those that you dont give a fuck if it has changed. You've grown with the city, and the people you love it with have grown, and so the city has grown... doesn't matter.

i love the post too! <3

blunt edges said...

bombay (yup not mumbai) was a non-permanent part of my life too...wanna go there again sometime...loved your post! :D

Anjali said...

loved the pics! amazing!

阿凡達 said...

初次造訪~安安^^ .........................................

rain girl said...

@khamakha...I love this line you wrote: and everytime I tried it gets so much into my veins..I almost go too numb to express..

:) see, you wrote in two lines what took me a whole post to express.. :)

rain girl said...

@Amrita: and I love you girl! <3 :D

the way you have described love for a city...I think I am infatuated with Mumbai, but am in love with Delhi ...:P

rain girl said...

@blunt edges.. then write about it :) would love to read what you have to say :)

rain girl said...

@Anjali.. thank you so much! :) good to c ya here :)

rain girl said...

@阿凡達 :

在这里欢迎

Beauty and the BEast said...

Makes me want to run to be with you.. and makes we want to let you stay ... its like looking at Bombay through a different lens..

Sans the maddening joy which the crazy pace seems to instill in its inhabitants, this perspective is oddly fresh...

Awesome pictures!!

Americanising Desi said...

sound so much like karachi :)

oRange* said...

you know, i crib everyday because i hate that 45 mins train journey but after reading your post ..i dont feel THAT bad for some reason :P

and yes, Bombay and certainly not Mumbai :)

nice one

rebelONrise said...

hey gurlie...love ur blog! that pic of the kid next to the hydrant is so innocent...
now i wanna come there n hang out with you in the train...hehhe

rain girl said...

@B&B: awww that's so sweet!! you come here na :) it will give new colors to my perspective :)

rain girl said...

@AD: wow.. that sounds so interesting :) I always thought Karachi would be more like Lucknow...

rain girl said...

@oRange: chalo am so glad :) someone feels better after reading my post :)

rain girl said...

@rebelONrise.. :P seems like a great idea! come along.. :)

Kaalicharan/Calvy said...

...& how would Lutyen's Delhi put to words of its dismal loss? Chandni Chowk gets replaced by Chaupati,old Delhi charm rusts off to skyscrapers...and yet I hope thy heart skips a beat whenever you hear Dilli:)

For each city is akin to a stranger just waiting to be befriended!

keep loving d dogs:)

PS Bombay > Mumbai
Q.E.D.

rain girl said...

@kalicharan...trust me, I never thought it possible, but absence does make the heart grow fonder...Delhi will always have a special place in my heart..always.. :)

harcharan bains said...

PRETTY INTERESTING AND SENSTIVE STUFF HERE. WILL STAY IN TOUCH. AND THE PICS ARE LOVELY. BUT MORE INTENSE IS WHAT YU WRITE. ENJOYED VISITING. I WRITE ON SUNNYMINDCAVES.BLOGSPOT.COM .. AWAITS YOU, THAT BLOG.

harcharan bains said...

Incidentally, i got in here courtesy shoegirl .. a pretty brilliant blog that .

harcharan bains said...

Incidentally, i got in here courtesy shoegirl .. a pretty brilliant blog that .

commited to life said...

seems u r new in bombay

i am just abt to complete 3 years..
waiting to get away and get back home

to tell u the truth.. i used to feel proud wenever i used to travel in local.. still feels

though i agree bombay has its own charm
but it sometimes it can make u lonely..

depends
best of luck to you..

commited to life said...

btw nice pics

p.s was just passing by

rain girl said...

@harcharan... welcome here... :) and thank you so much... :)

rain girl said...

@committed to life: welcome here...

yes I am new to bombay, and unfortunately, by the time I will start to feel like I belong here, it will be time to move on...

yes, travelling in local makes me feel proud, too..like I have accomplished something people thought I was to delicate to do...

and, again, yes, it does make you lonely..but then, being new in any city will lead to the same feeling...

ciao! keep passing by.. :)

harcharan bains said...

FLOODING THE SKY

(ONCE MORE PRAYING SPONTANEOUSLY -- IN HINDI)

TU RAAT BHI, KIRAN BHI, SEHAR BHI, DOPEHAR BHI,
ANJAANI DAGAR OR ATKHELIAN KARTI LEHAR BHI;

DIYA BHI MANZIL BHI TU , SIYAAH RAH GUZAR BHI TU,
MANZILE MAQSOOD BHI, ANJAAN SI DAGAR BHI TU.

NOOR BHI, UMANG BHI, CHANDA BHI OR CHAKOR BHI;
PIAYAR KI KHAMOSH RAHEIN, VALVALON KA SHOR BHI.

JAAGTA SA KHWAB DIN KA, HAQEEQATON KA AKS BHI ,
MAUT KA GEHAN SANNATA, ZINDAGI KA RAKS BHI.

SOYA SAQOON, JAAGI TARAP OR PHARFRAATA PANKH TU,
GHAR KI IK KHAMOSH VEENA, MANDIRON KA SANKH TU;

SHAM DHALE TO SO JAANA TU, LE SAPNON KI ORHNI,
RAAT KHUD LAYEGI SAPNE BAN CHANDA OR CHAKORNI;

BREHMAND MAIN HAI GOONJ TERE RAAG MERE PIYAAR KI,
CHAR SOO BAAHEIN PHELAATI MEHAK TERE GULZAAR KI.

SHAM KA DHALNA SUNHERI LAALI AMBAR PAAR KI,
TU HI BAADAL, TU HI BIJLI, BAARISH TU HI MALHAR BHI.

BRHAM BHI, BRAHMAND BHI, KAILASH VARINDAVAN BHI TU,
JISM KA YE SHOR PAAGAL, PRASHANT GEHRA MANN BHI TU.

YE BHI TU OR WOH BHI TU,OR MAIN BHI TU OR TU BHI TU ,
GHAR BHI, JANGAL, JHEEL JHARNA TU HI TU BUS TU HI TU.

KIS KI YE TALAASH AANKHEIN RAAT DIN PHIR KAR RAHIN?
MANN YAHIN, DUNIYAAN YAHIN, SEHRA YAHIN JAB GHAR YAHIN;

NAAD SA UTHE HAI MANN MEIN JAOON MEIN JIS BHI TARAF,
IS TARF TERA TARRANAM, NRITYA TERA USS TARF.

KHO CHUKKA HOON HOSH APNI, HOSH MAIN AAYOON BHI KIYOON?
MANN TERA AANANT AMBAR, OR KAHIN JAAYOON BHI KIYOON?

IK DABI MUSKAAN SE JO NAAM MERA BOLE DE,
HAR TARF ANAND HE ANAND KE DAR KHOL DE.
Posted by harcharan bains at 11:53 PM 0 comments Links to this post
Labels: BRAHAM OPR BRHAMAND

harcharan bains said...

Still waiting with an ear to the door!

sunnymindcaves.blogspot.com

harcharan bains said...

A man is known by the comapny he keeps.Unfortunately, that is not alwasy true of a dog.

os1123 said...

All i have to say is wow...i am impressed by those pics and the words are so beautiful when you describe love...wish we all knew what brings the feeling of love from within our hearts...Thanks for the reminder :)

rain girl said...

@os1123: thank you so much!

and welcome here :)

Anonymous said...

Bombay forever...
Bombay bombay bombay.

"Not Mumbai. Nopes."

Super. Absolutely super.

Sounds so much better than Mumbai, too. Lovely as it flows over the tongue. Lovely when you realise what it stands for. And what Mumbai doesn't!

Except. That. Bombay was is and will always be. Permanent.

PS - Love this too.

B/ Regds,

Does It Matter?

rain girl said...

@DIM... feels so good to see you here .. :)

and Bombay is permanent.. yes, but perhaps, not in my life... like Delhi, it will also make me nostalgic one day and yearn for days long gone...

Anonymous said...

Bombay will grow upon you, it will.

And you will grow while in (with?) Bombay as well...

Not only will it make you nostalgic, it will also become permanent within you.

The only thing it might not have in permanence, is, its name - regrettably!!

DIM.

rain girl said...

@DIM.. amen!

Luscious Sealed Lips said...

I am in love with the locals too. Everyday is just a new experience, even on the same routes.

Love your pictures. :)

Kisses.

rain girl said...

@luscious Sealed Lips: thank you.. :)

and I love your moniker ;)

limenlemons said...

its tough to not fall in love with bombay! no matter how strong ur defenses are....the city seduces u. u have no choice girl :) just go with the flow and love it!

THE DOERS said...

...
I'm glad you found stumbled upon my Blog & vice versa~
Bombay to means everything &
i so agrEE that its changing...
& due to that transformation
via my ideas...i try talking about it in a very graphical way.
...
Im not an active bloGGer
But lots is haPPening.
send me a mail: neildantas at gmail

rain girl said...

your ideas are very original, yet so simple, it's like, why didn't I think of it??

:) guess u have already received that email.

tc.

Anonymous said...

Good post, adding it to my blog now, thanks. :)