Wednesday, February 2, 2011

First Morning in Bombay

3rd February 2010

It’s 6:46 by my watch. I found myself up at 5 today, even though I’d slept as late as nearly 1:30. I don’t know why, maybe I’m just nervous sharing the bed with a stranger. A male stranger, to be specific.

It’s seven now. In the fourteen minutes since 6:46 the sky has cleared from the grey of old, worn roads to the white of white shirts washed with Robin Blue. I couldn’t help watching the magic unfold from the window. By the way, he’s still asleep, my male bed-partner.

He looks like someone who worked hard at the gym, got good muscles and physique and everything and then gave the whole ordeal up to find that then the body took back on him all it’s vengeance of the years gone by when he tortured it. Sure you know what I’m talking about, haven’t you seen how bigtime gymmers all grow somewhat round in that peculiarly clumsy, unshapely way after they give up gymming? It’s just that kind of a thing with him. But why am I talking about him.

It’s my first day at work today. First day at work at this place I mean. Bombay. Crisil. Dad’s really happy with this job. Once thing he’s really happy about apart from it being a good company is that it’s an Indian company, he’s by design wary of MNCs and foreign companies. It’s the first day. I hope it is as good as it has been in my dreams.

Bombay’s beautiful but Delhi’s more beautiful. You’d never appreciate it if you always lived in Delhi, but Delhi has orderly, wide roads that cut each other at right angles. It has symmetry. Who was it who called symmetry the basis of all beauty? He had something there. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that symmetry is beauty, but I will say at least that symmetry is beautiful. But for all the breadth and beauty of Delhi, it, I must admit, lacks the vada pao.

Enough of peripheral claptrap. I miss my family. No, I’m not missing the rest just as yet but I’m sure as hell I will.


  1. You know wherever I go, I find these people from the BIG cities clamoring up, naming innumerable, what I assume as must be famous, busy and important roads or buildings. It's difficult not to find such bunch of delhi waale or mumbaikers, wherever you go. And obviously, they get into contrasting the BIG cities amongst themselves.

    But for someone who grew up in a small city, bereft of any such group, the sentiments are so much more like in those scenes which lead upto the climax of a play, silently waiting, comfortably assured that it will happen to me too - the big thing that will change my life in someway and hell yeah, i'll be part of the group which would reminisce one of these cities somewhere else, in fond nostalgia, spewing one name after another, claiming to know the city as good as my palm.

    :) May you find your dreams in the city of dreams. I shall be there for whole two months of summer. Find time to meet me.

  2. When I was still an infant I went to live to the town of Ranchi. Of course now it is a capital city and all that but back then it was miserably secondary to Patna, which in itself was an overcrowded village when seen through the prism of New Delhi. But I loved the place. When we finally moved back to Delhi when I was five, I thought it was another of those annual trips to Delhi. I was excited about Delhi, but only inasmuch as I was excited about it every year. Once we were there I had a blast for ten days but then wanted badly to go back, wheedled, threatened, incited, insisted, persisted, requested my folks to go back to Ranchi, only to realise we were here for good. Of course, the breadth of the roads and their flatness quotient and the angles at which they cut each other and the city's local food and the height of the buildings and the sanitary systems and the state of public transport were hitherto irrelevant to my hitherto unhardened brain - all that mattered was where friends and loved ones were, and they were in Ranchi.

    Inside, that's all that matters even today. The rest, as I conceded, is claptrap.