Sunday, August 15, 2010


Oh Bombay, dear Bombay, where do I start?

I moved to Bombay almost a year back. And Oh boy, did the city grow on me or what. Moving to Bombay from Trivandrum was a major major change and initially I did hate the sudden fastening up of everything. But then again the city has her charm; she will seduce you and make you fall in love with her.

The city that welcomed me with open arms and her mood swings that is the infamous Bombay rains, swept me off my feet with (I am tempted to say spirit here, but I won’t, because spirit of Bombay has been overdone millions of times) the freedom she stands for.

There is the Sea you can run off to whenever you feel like, entire Bombay feels like yours when you are one of the handful of people at Marine drive early in the morning; the wonderful second hand books at Matunga that has tales of its own to tell; the Madras Cafes and the Urban Tadkas; the pubs and the discs when you are in the mood for some loud fun and the quiet peace of nature at Lonavala and Matheran. Take a ferry from the Gateway and bam! you can have the beach weekend you are craving for (there are too many beaches to choose from: Be warned!).

Want to see the real Bombay? Dadar station or Victoria Terminus is the place to be. You will know why Local trains are called as Bombay’s lifeline. Intimidating initially with the uninterrupted free flow of people busy in their own worlds, one might get used to all that in due course of time, I suppose. The good thing about the mad rush is that it makes you huddle next to the person you are with, hold on to their hands perhaps so that you don’t get lost. Travelling in local trains is the true Bombay experience. I still remember with pride the day I travelled alone in a local :)

Then there is Colaba, with all the bright colorful stuff girls would go wide-eyed over, the handbags, the chappals (better hone your bargaining skills, ladies), fake antiques, the endless firangs and what not. Wait, it gets better...Leopold’s cafĂ©, the mouthwatering desserts at Theobromas (Food of the Gods, indeed!) and more for the post shopping-spree tired soul.

For the art lover, there are the museums and the well established theatre framework. The Kala Ghoda Arts fest- with 9 days of theatre, dance, music, literature, street food and performances is Bombay’s very own street carnival. Then there is the love-it-or-hate-it-you-can’t-ignore-it Bollywood. And the pleasant surprise of running into a celebrity (even if they might not be on your favorite list). Dropping off bombs like you “ran into” Shabana Azmi or Aishwarya Rai the other day, does sound pretty cool, trust me.

Bombay is just so much more than any of this; Bollywood or the gateway and Taj or the yummy street food or the “spirit” put together. Like a friend puts it, “Her allure is like that of a stunning girl you have excellent chemistry with, have dinner with, but can’t have more of.”

I have fallen in love, and not just with the city. But my dear Bombay, you will always be my sweetheart.


  1. I always used to criticise people who used to never stop the mumbai swansong.. then i came and stayed here for two month.. yearning to return ever since