A day in the life of a Mumbaikar

Mumbai_Skyline1

I swim as fast as I can towards the tower in the middle of the sea,to prevent the waves from overpowering me.However,I can’t seem to remember how I landed in this situation.As I get closer,I hear the faint sound of bells in the distance.A sound so soothing to the ears that it lulls me to sleep.My eyelids feel heavy with each passing second.I force myself to stay awake so that I don’t drown.Just few more seconds and I’ll be safe…

I’m jolted back to reality by the irksome sound of my alarm clock.As I wake up to turn it off I notice that the time on my phone is 7:30 AM.I get dressed and I’m out the door by 8:15 AM so that I don’t miss my 8:50  AM train to work.

As soon as I step outside my building I’m greeted by narrow streets with two way traffic.My trip hereafter is not short of a video game scenario where I must complete several tasks to stay alive.

My 1st task of the day involves crossing a double traffic signal without getting run over by a bus,car or a speeding taxi.

2nd task is walking on the pavement which is more like playing the game “Skipping Stones”in Takeshi’s castle.Because of excessive rainwater seeping through the poorly constructed pavement the stones gets dislodged and become wobbly.Thus you have to be very careful which stone you step on.In addition to that shopkeepers decide to add more water by  cleaning their shops and throwing the dirty water on the pavement thereby making it more slippery.

3rd task involves dodging a wave of different people in order to reach the station.On  the way I find people who ride bikes on the pavement like they have a licensed pass to do so.I’m sorry,but would you mind driving on the road where you are supposed to drive?The worst thing is that they pretend as if they are doing something that is completely normal.Jeez!I’ve been walking on the wrong side my entire life.The hawkers put up stalls that occupy what little space is left to walk on the footpath, making it almost impossible to walk.Somehow I manage to reach the station just in time to catch my train.Task completed!

Train ride is pretty good considering I travel opposite the Churchgate crowd.As the train pulls into the Andheri station I am greeted by the sweet aroma given out by the Parle-G factory.

Hereafter starts my next task,that is to reach the office in formals.As soon as I come out of the station I see that the situation is worse than that in my 2nd task.Here the footpath is relatively smaller and completely occupied by small scale vendors.So now I’ve to literally walk on the road, turning back every five minutes to avoid getting killed by a bus,car or flying rickshaw.Yes,you heard it right “A Flying Rickshaw”.Rickshaw drivers who are mistaken that they are driving a Ferrari.On the next turn I have to walk past a public toilet.God help me if it rains.Right before my office I have to cross a tabela(A colloquial term for a barn where buffaloes are reared).The other day I had to dodge a buffalo that had escaped and was confused by the ongoing traffic.A little ahead is a well from which water is used to wash buffaloes and simultaneously in which boys swim. A few more steps and I reach my destination alive.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Don’t you want me to fly with you again?

Dear Jet Airways,
You say I’m a valued customer and yet you keep doing things to make me want to never fly with you again.
What problem do you have with me? Why choose me?
My luggage weighs well within the stipulated weight limit and yet you decide to offload at least one of my bags each time I travel to Mumbai.
First time it was all, second time one.
Next time you better make sure it’s none.

First of all I don’t understand why you need to offload few bags when the flight is capable of carrying all the bags.If the flight isn’t capable then why overbook it?
Secondly, what I don’t understand is who gave you the rights to decide whose luggage to offload. How can you assume that I’m not travelling anywhere the same day.
Last time when I was travelling, you offloaded my luggage though I had a flight the very next day with  another airlines.You promised me that my luggage would reach by evening.
I being an innocent fool believed your empty words.You gave me the Jet Airways Mumbai Office number to contact for any further assistance  which I must say avoided my calls worse than one would avoid a stalking ex’s calls . I tried calling them for hours together but there was no response at all.
So the following day, I went to the International Airport just to find out about my luggage but guess what, they won’t let me in because I don’t have a ticket  and the Airport  authorities won’t budge from their AC offices to help out even after explaining the entire situation to them.
I ran around trying to get some help from you people but you just turned a deaf ear. At this point I had absolutely no idea where my luggage was.When my dad went to Airport office in Saudi they said they’ll look for it(After a day I get to know that it wasn’t sent on the next flight that day as you said they would).Since I was getting late for my flight to Mangalore which I had to catch from the domestic airport, I had to leave.

On reaching Mangalore,  my biggest concern was how to inform you that my luggage has to be delivered here and not Mumbai since you guys clearly didn’t know the usage of the box called telephone in your office.
You didn’t respond to my emails either.How did you expect me to gain your attention?
Finally after my dad spent two convective days going to the Jet Airways office in Dammam,Saudi Arabia they decided to intervene and track my luggage. My luggage reached my house in Mangalore after 5 days from the day I’d landed in Mumbai.
In spite of all that I dared to travel by your airlines again thinking it was only a one time incident, but you haven’t failed to disappoint me once again.
I don’t think I’ll need to think twice before deciding which airlines NOT to fly with.
Yours sincerely,
A frustrated Passenger.

Three Musketeers plus two

I’d written this for my cousin who turned 21 few days back.Wish you all the happiness in the world Ishi :*

Three girls huddled together on the couch,
Their feet high above the ground.
A lazy afternoon
spent at nana’s place
wondering what to play
after exhausting all  games they knew at their age.

The three musketeers
as they were called
could bring the entire household down.
With Toofan mail in the lead,
Ishi and Jess,were her partners in crime.

Whether it was pulling books down from Nana’s bookshelf
to running around the house playing catch,
they had done it all.

Fast forward a few years
three young girls huddled on the same couch
now with a small boy and a baby girl.
Overjoyed at their newfound accomplices,
They planned to take over the little world they lived in.

And so began the training of the little ones
Toofan mail taught how to care selflessly.
Ishi taught them how to have fun.
Jess taught them how to play.
Together they went on missions,
it was them against the world.

Many years later,
smarter and more mature
the three musketeers and plus two
knew not, if they would conquer the world.
But know for a fact
that they have each others.