Thursday, May 29, 2003
There are some people who love the rains. Then there are some people who loove the rains.
I, for one, belong to the latter category.
And let me be the first to say, that there is no better place to enjoy the rains as in Bombay. It's a city that revels in the rain. It's a city that breathes every moment. The city that never sleeps. The city that never ceases to function even if it rains for days together.
Here I record a few of my memories of the Bombay rains-
Going to school wearing those huge gumboots. Reaching there and emptying out your shoes and then comparing your wrinkly, soggy feet with the next guy there. Doesn't anyone wear gumboots anymore?
Not going to school. Singing along in the school-bus towards the school when suddenly..... is that another school-bus heading in the opposite direction? Yes, it is! It's a rainy day holiday! Awesome!
Walking back home (about 5-6 kms) because the bus didn't turn up.
Taking a lift in the rains to get back home after hours of classes. Then the car in which you've taken a lift breaks down and you have no choice but to help them push it along.
Those huge concrete pipes which lie on the side of the road - many are the homes of the homeless. Mothers clutching their young ones covering themselves with plastic sheets which have flown off nearby shops.
The sweet smell that accompanies the rains, the rains that settle the grime and dust which are an integral part of Bombay.
Everyone turning up for classes, or for work or anywhere. It's business as usual. A cousin of mine, came down to Bombay back in 1988 for his summer training. We stayed at Andheri, his office was at Nariman Point. The first day he had to report for work, the rain gods blessed Bombay. It rained...to put it mildly. Trains stopped. Buses halted. Would you think about coming back home? Not the Bombayite. R (my cousin) walked on the tracks from Bandra to Churchgate. Ask him why he didn't turn back? Pat comes the reply - "I didn't think of it. Everyone else was walking, it looked like the normal thing to do". That's what Bombay does to you.
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