Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Yeh hai Bombay meri jaan!

Its almost been a year that I am travelling in Mumbai (Bombay to me - my city, my home!) and have been in for a few surprises. For everyone out there who thinks Bombay is uncaring and expensive - well think again!

i had to go to a friend's house in Colaba and took a local train to VT station (as u can see - i am sticking to the old names). I wasn't sure which is a better exit to take - so i approached a help desk manned by two cops and asked them the best way to get to Regal theatre. One of them immediately said (in Marathi) - just go to that bus stop there - Bus # 1 will take you straight to Regal. I said i'd like to take a cab. His immediate response: "Why do you want to waste money on cabs when there is a straight bus taking you there?"

Anyway, thanking him for his advice, i proceeded towards the taxi stand (i was running late :-/ , that's why). I asked the first cabbie in the line if he could take me to a street ahead of Regal. His response: " i will drop you until Regal. You can walk from there if the place is close." I wasn't surprised at this response - living in Bangalore, this is something i face everyday from the auto drivers there - something like - hey if your destination is where i "feel" like going today and you are willing to pay double the fare, hop on! So i told the cabbie, i don't want to walk, i'll take another cab that takes me to the street. That's when the cabbie told me that he was running a share cab. Which means he takes in four passengers all wanting to go roughly in the same direction. And that's why it's hard for him to drop me till the end point of my destination. Thus enlightened, i told him i was running late and would take a regular cab - he immediately responded, "madam why do you want to spend on a regular cab when you could get there at 1/4th the price? Anyway the place you need to do isn't all that far from Regal"

So people out there - Bombay cares, Bombay saves and Bombay helps you save. I struggle a lot more in Bangalore where public services assume EVERYONE living there has plush software jobs with high disposable incomes and will pay whatever it takes to avail of the public services. But Bombay knows that people have different lives, different stories and are working hard to earn their living. And no matter what the pace of life is out there, Bombay is willing to stop and listen and help. Bombay truly rocks!


Anonymous said...

yes, bombay really rocks. only people who have lived there or lives there will know that the city has so much to offer. the local trains, the sea, the bookstores, the victorian buildings, the bakeries and the people.
Will always miss the place..

Anonymous said...

yeah! Bombay rocks! with its exhilarating pace and sea of people all rising and ebbing with each other, I agree - it will always be home :)


Kalpita said...