City of Love & Life

Bombay ~ it’s more than the sea around it or the heritage structures it takes pride in. It’s beyond its monuments or daily animated train journeys. It’s more than just the poverty stricken roads or sky-high buildings. Bombay is a hard and fast routine, ready to slap you in the face when you get comfortable and embrace you when you fall.

Look out of your windows and beyond the horizon. What do you see?

Bombay is a city of love, it’s a city of life!

Arguments about the best city in the country or even the world may always go on. Hell it will always go on. But live here for a while, giving yourself to the city and you’ll see what I’m talking about. I get a lot of slack for being a ‘Goan’ and yet raving about Bombay. Forgive me amigos, I love Goa, I truly do. But I love Bombay just as much, maybe even a little more on some days. For me, they’re two states telling two very different tales. And we’re people meant to live these two interesting stories, separately without any debate.

Goa is where the heart lives, but Bombay will always be home. It’s be the kind of love that can never be replaced. Simply put, it shows you two sides of the same coin down the same road.

Yes Bombay, you’ve thrown a taxi driver’s paan all over my feet, you’ve made me walk in waters I wouldn’t want to look at, you’ve brushed those sweaty backs on my arms, and on some nights you’ve surrounded me with rats ’cause the dark wasn’t scary enough. You got me my first date dress under 200 bucks, you gave me the best sunset view on my saddest days, you made it rain when I needed to hide my tears, you blessed me with cheap food when I was almost broke. There have been days when you’ve made me melt on your streets, get drenched under your storms, and even froze me by the sea. But I’ll still always love you.

Bombay is the kind of friend you can always count on, blessing you with many more of the kind. Experience a taxi driver play you the flute in the middle of the road and wipe your tears when you’re feeling low. Experience a bus driver halt and smile at you as your cross the road after a long day. Experience a stranger give you a seat in a crowded train just because. Experience a cop letting go of a ticket because he’s amused by your innocence. Experience a taxi driver dropping you home late at night, scolding you like a father filled with concern. Experience a chai-walla giving you the best bournvita-milk at 4am. Experience a stray dog sitting by your feet as you wait for a friend. Experience Bombay the way you want to experience it, and you’ll see the good over the evil.

There is no other place you would feel as complete. Here is where you will feel vulnerable and protected at the same time. You will be exposed to diversity but you will also live in great harmony.  You will love but you will also hate. You will share bittersweet memories with many. But in the end, being in the city, you will become the best version of yourself. It wraps you in its care, like a mother would with her baby. And once you’ve truly lived here, look out of your windows and beyond the horizon. What do you see?