Saturday, July 23, 2011

I want to see the sea

I want to see the sea
But I have been too busy
But really actually too lazy
Still I want to see the sea

Very lousy but yeah I have been wishing to go to the beach or Marine drives since weeks. Its the sound of the waves, the wind in your hair, the smell of the sea that I have been missing. Juhu beach, chowpatty use to be our forthnightly hangout as kids. Eating the bhel, colourful golas, and trying to gather the courage to get in the sea. Now we are all grown up and mother is not obliged to take us out (well except forcing the visits to relatives and such.)

Last night I made up my mind - enough is enough. Tomorrow I will force sisters and we'll go to Charni road. Sit on the promenade whatsitcalled then maybe go shopping too. Yay. I made a plan. Achievement.

Woke up. Not a good nights sleep. Told mom & sisters of the plan and one of the sister agreed. Long story short, 4:30pm we left the house, took the Churchgate fast. Which happens to not halt at Charni Road. So plan change. We go to Churchgate and go to Colaba instead. Now, I have lived alll my life in Bombay but I haven't seen 25% of the city. I haven't really been to Colaba except Navy nagar (not sure its in Colaba). We got down at Churchgate, walked through Fashion street, bought nothing, walked and walked, saw books, I bought two, and we kept walking.

There are too many lanes out there and too many signals. And too many zebra crossing and few people crossing the roads. We kept going in circles. I acted all touristy (sister's words which I put in her mouth). We did ask few cabbies to take us to Colaba but no luck. Did some more shopping. I feel so out of place in that part of town. Maybe I am just too conscious cos I am so clumsy. Dropping things, nervous loud laughter, bla bla.

Decided to go back to churchgate and get back home. He asked what were we doing in the VT side of Churchgate, the opposite side to were we wanted to go. He was nice enough to chat up while he drove so I did not ask him to turn towards Subway where I wanted to get a burger. Let the nice uncle talk. And again ordering food, never let me handle it. Never know where and what to order.

I did see the sea from the train!

Sent via Virar local train's middle second class ladies coach.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


I write this sitting in a Mumbai local train, on my way to work. Its been raining the whole night and there were 3 bomb blasts last evening. Right now I am more worried about how is the central line faring. Life as an entity really doesn't stop living. We loose it but it lives. In someone else. In the inanimate objects that are part of our daily lives.
Last evening was scary. I was alone in the whole bunch of people at work. Many just looked up from their workstations when I mentioned about the blasts, called their near & dear ones and went back to work. Total apathy towards strangers? Is it due to the daily crunch of travel, work, deadlines, running around in this big city? City of dreams where dad says you will not go hungry even if you are a ragpicker. Has it made us so jaded and glazed. In our own world of issues and concerns.
I did see many people on twitter extending help, food, shelter for the stranded. Many cursing the system. Many giving their expert analysis about the country's situation, who to blame, what should have been done, etc etc etc. I don't judge anyone on what they talked about or what their opinion was. Its just how we react and comfort ourselves in situations. People kept me company on gtalk, concerned smses, tweets. I took comfort in knowing someone cared about me. I would have wept crazy if I were at home. Office, surrounded by people who kept working (maybe that comforted them) drove me to the edge.
I have lived all my life in Bombay, never lived in any other city in a crisis to know how would they react to things. We have no option other than to move on. I have work to do, meetings to attend, people to yell at.

25yrs and I have lived through a major riot and three bomb blasts. Witness to the riot and 7/11 blast first hand. I never want to get used to this. Bodies strewn on the railway tracks or masked men holding swords in their hands.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

"What's wrong with the day?"

That was the reply to the below statement i tweeted (in case you are wondering what "that"is, i am talking about the title of the post.)
"It is 8/7/2011 today. A day to be written down in history along with the fact that it will not occur again in anybody's lifetime."
And everything after that went downhill.
Waking up as usual at 6am, spending another hour or two cursing in general, not wanting to get up. And it was raining quite heavily. Been raining the whole night. Mustering courage and remembering that i had setup a meeting for 11am, i woke up when dad enquired where was i going and i should take a day off cos its been raining alot. That made me to make up my mind firmer about going to work anyhow. Guess who was going to bite their tongue later.

Got ready, mom packed lunch, quick breakfast and at 8:30am i left home. Railway station is 20mins away from home on foot. Since it was raining and i wanted an auto, i didnt get any. Walked and reached their at 9am. 10 mins more due to teying to not walk through puddles, looking for auto, getting tired, etc.
Didn't catch the 9:02 Churchgate fast cos it would need me to hang at the door and i wasnt really looking forwards to get wet in the rain completely yet. Next was the 9:11am slow, all ladies train. Calculations said i'd reach work just in time.
Train crawled as usual. And then went on to run between halts rather than halts between running. Santacruz, it stood still for more than 15mins. I should be in Dadar at 10:15am and not just midway! I had to change to the next central trwinto Ghatkopar. Panic sets in. Finally 10:45am we are there. I brisk walk to the central slow platform and the 10:30am Ambernath comes at 10:50am. Calls and emails made to office to get meeting rescheduled, work assigned. Matunga passes and train halts. And just stays put. For an hour. There are trains ahead of us and behind on the same track. People start getting down and walking to the next station. I go click pics. Alone so i keep tweeting and he occupied with something. It took the train 1hr 15mins to cover distance of about 5mins. The rescheduled call is canceled and what will i do if the train doesnt move scare takes over. Sion passes finally. The tracks were submerged undrr water. Some lady advices against getting down there since its a slow station and it would be better to go to Kurla whetr we could get the fast trains which were still running towards Dadar. Had given up the plan to go to work and jist get back home. Frigging 3+hrs and still counting. Got off at Kurla and the return trip was easier and thankgod not much delay. Got down at my station at 2:15pm. Walked home and reached by 2:50pm. All the hours in between was spend in traon, on platforms, walking. Knocked the door and joined in the laughter addressed to me.

That was wrong with the day.

Saturday, July 2, 2011


My first attempt at writing an Urdu poem. Inspired by "Sheeshon ka maseeha" by Faiz Ahmed Faiz, below is sort of a reply to the inspiration.

Daaman hai khoon se ranga hua,
karte hue ekat'ha dil ke tukdon ko
Sheeshey sa woh chaknachoor jo hua,
ek jaam ke pyaale sa.

Kya jaano tum inn tootey tukdon se
kitne rangon se khil jaata hai samaa.
ek chehra tumhara dekhu jo unmein,
hazaaron aks nazar aate hai.

Maseeha koi nahi milega iss raah per,
zindagi khud hi chalti hai.
bikharti hai, sawarti hai,
Girkar phir sambhalti hai.
Humein hai sab ye gawaara,
ke mohsin har kisike naseeb nahi hota.

Intezaar karna tumhaara, meri khwaash hai
kaayam hai meri ye saanse tab tak.
Justajoo koi rahi nahi,
dil ko sameit, samjha hai diya.
Raah per nazrey tikaaye hum bathey rahenge chauraahe per
bin palkey jhapkaaye hue.
Kisi din toh Khuda karam karega,
ya tum lautogey, ya maut ye jaan le jaayegi.