"When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds: Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great, and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be." - Patanjali

Friday, July 14, 2006

Bombay

Although I'm quite tempted to let this brief disappearance of mine morph into a scandalous version of Sherlock Holmes' finest, I will come out of hiding and bear you with a few experiences i've had of late.

Firstly, Swati was correct in that I was in Tirupathi for a few days but did not heed her sensible councel of not flying to Bombay. In fact we landed last night and today I caught a train from Andheri to Dadar (near Matunga, one of the places hit by the bombs), and then later from the city side back to the suburbs. If I had some how been shut out of any news, or any information ovre the past few days, I would have thought everything was normal.

There was no sign of carnage, or anxious passengers, or low crowds. Infact we fought just as hard to get into the train, and even harder to find a seat. The people were friendly as ever, still pointing out which side the platform would arrive (on the Bombay train, there are subtle undercurrents at work which the novice is quite oblivious to. Each passenger strategically positions himself so that he's stading facing the exit at the station he wishes to alight at. The newcomer then, may seemingly jam this well oiled machine, but so well oiled is it, that the newcomer is quickly pointed his way with minimum fuss and order is restored.), and peddlers pushing their goods are still in fine voice. Today we saw the performance (for thats what it really is) of a pen seller, selling his multi coloured pens at the rate of 5 for Rs10; and then later a gentleman trying to off load a clothes hanger which resembled more a contraption to keep babies amused while they lie in their pram.

Its precisely this spirit - which i've been fortunate to witness first hand - which keeps this city functioning. In the first few days of coming to Bombay (I came here on the 29th of June) the city was quite literally flooded. For me, it was great. I'd never been on the receiving end of a torrential down pour before, and wading through filthy knee high water was, in an absurd way, fun. It rained and rained and I marvelled at the rising water.

On the streets though, I imagined quite the opposite mood. I would have imagined frustrated people, unable to go about their business, not able to buy their food, or sell their goods. Instead, as the water rose, the traffic ceased - I too had to turn back, cos I couldn't find a ride to the station which was more or less submerged - and the buses finally stopped, the people took over.

JP road is quite busy and can be jammed during peak hour. That day though, kids were running around, guys were playing throw ball, parents had put their bubs in seated floaties (so only their feet were in the water), while others, more desperate, waded to get to their place of work or school or whatever. It rained, but Life went on. That is Bombay.

The sad thing is that some groups of people out there are intent on destroying this way of life. The clear message though, is that Bombayites, or Mumbaikers will not let that happen, becasue these events help the masses bind that much more tightly through invisible chains to maintain their way of life in their beautiful city.

6 comments:

swati said...

naughty boy hrishi! first not heeding my advice and then telling me how you wading through te filthy waters of bombay!! goodness me! you're lucy you didn't catch something! but i'm glad you are ok...

Matthew Jepsen said...

viva la mumbai!

Anonymous said...

Very nice site! coffee makers uk uk coffee maker 3d model Wholesale sofa sets Pyrolytic ovens

Anonymous said...

Best regards from NY! Backpack leather organizer ground-fault circuit breaker symbol how to win video keno medicare part d training 401k com in car gps system stop taking wellbutrin bettig strategies four card keno making your sofa Farrah faucet poster play online cash keno red ball Home tv projector Small business accounting software brazil

Anonymous said...

Best regards from NY! video editing schools

Anonymous said...

Hey, I recently added a news widget from www.widgetmate.com to my blog. It shows the latest news, and just took a copy and paste to implement. Might interest you too.