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Category: Visit Mumbai

Reliving Old Ones

Till the time I completed my secondary school education, I have stayed in different places. To make it clearer, in my fifteen years of school education, my last school was the tenth one. Well, one may presume that I am jabbering but I have memories of different and equally wonderful places.

We were in Anantnag, a small town further from Srinagar, one of the most beautiful places for a kid to grow up. We had a huge Chinar tree in our garden; it covered the entire garden under it. Every autumn it would turn bright with golden, copper, brown and red hues. So if you lie down under it, you would see an orange sky of leaves with shimmering sunlight peeping through it and the green grass under you; the grass was usually cold, but one can adjust. The lawn had a very high fence; I couldn’t see past it even if I stood on my tippy toes stretching to my full height, which wasn’t much(my mother used to believe I would be a dwarf all my life. thank goodness her fear did not turn to reality.) My father had put up a swing on the tree branch, which was my prized possession. When I swung forward was the only time I could see past the fence and see what was happening outside.

Another reason it was a good place to grow up would be that there were no schools near my house and those nearby were shut because of the fear of shelling. It was 1998, the year Kargil started, so I had home schooling. Home schooling wasn’t that great a pain, security reasons and bandhs kept my teacher at bay. He was wonderful and kind – before every session I was given a huge, juicy, scarlet apple. I always felt that the apple twinkled at me. Mum used to tell me every time how I should be deeply grateful because the man was one of the few who had the privilege of studying and was teaching me to make money for his college.

For me, a 6 year old, my swing and the garden were far better a company to have than him. I remember it was 14th August and next day was a holiday, but while he was talking to father my instinct told me the holiday was a dream. What was more annoying was that the session would start at 8 sharp in the morning. The next day, we were in the garden and he told me to sit on my swing, I willingly agreed. After a while, I could hear humming sound, and it became louder and louder, coming closer to us. i held my swing very tightly and anticipated what was going to happen. My swing started moving to and fro. I rose higher and higher after every push, till the time I could see what was creating the noise. I saw a chain of Royal Enfield Bullets – I couldn’t count them, but they were a lot. Similar to the one my father had.
In a quick glance, I saw multiple flags attached to those bikes and the bikers were young men, similar to the teacher’s age. They were all smiling and holding the flag in their hands. The flags looked spectacular, in the wind were the national colours fluttering to the spirit of the day. It was a beautiful sight. I had never, in the six years of my life, seen the flag look so vibrant and full of life. Over the humming sound was my laughter, I was too happy and my teacher was brimming and smiling. Later he told me about how he and his friends from the college student union had organized this to motivate the youth, to want them to feel like being a part of educating themselves and believe in peace and harmony.

Years went by and I moved to Mumbai for my college education. All of this came back to me, when this Independence Day, me and few friends were looking for a story to cover for our Reporting assignment at Marine Drive. It was around 10:30 and I heard the same humming noise. It grew louder and louder and closer towards us. It had my full attention and this time I could count. There were more than five hundred bikers who went past us on their bikes. It was the same with flags fluttering and the bikers driving their Enfields. Only, this time, they were not just college boys but men of varied ages. To our surprise, there were women bikers as well. We stood there awestruck during the entire time as the bikers too seemed to be very attractive, like they knew the purpose of life and at that very moment it was to see the flag soaring, bright and vibrant. They passed us by under the bright blue sky, covering the queen’s necklace.
As usual, ‘the curiosity’ kicked in and I decided to find out who these bikers were. So after a few calls and a visit to Bandra , I found out that this was an anonymous group of bikers who rode from Bandra to Marine Drive on the occasion of Independence Day. There were a total of 800 bikers who covered this distance to show their patriotism. When contacted, Mr. Harshil who works at The Brand Store, Bandra service centre said, “This rally is conducted twice a year on both Republic Day and Independence Day. This year’s theme was saluting the Indian Armed Forces. We have been having these rallies for the past 9 years. We began this initiative in 2004.” He further added that the bikers unanimously come together for the rally; there is no fixed association/group who organizes it.

In the usual procedure the bikers generally start assembling by 8 am and by 9 am they start off. They cover the entire stretch in 4 hours from Bandra (west) to Gateway of India and back to Bandra (west) via Sidhivinayak Temple, Mahalaxmi, Pedder Road and Mantralaya. The rally is specifically for those who ride Royal Enfield bullets and instructions like security and safety were given in advance. A few rules that the bikers have to follow are that they have to drive in a two row pattern, no overtaking, helmets and licenses were compulsory and speed limit was set for 30 to 40 kms. The rally is their way to pay tribute to the leaders who fought for freedom. Well, surely I have something to look forward to for the republic day or maybe it is just old memories I plan to revive and relive or look forward to create new ones.

Puneet

MEHNNAT KI ATANNI ( photo essay)

BY NICOLE FERNANDES, TYBMM , SOPHIA COLLEGE

Mehnnat ki Atanni (  the money earned after continuous hard work and dedication  , which means ‘a struggle to earn 50 paisa each day’ is a descriptive photo essay of such a struggle in Mumbai.

Mumbai is a city which gives opportunities to each and every person to earn his or her living, a city which does not define any kind of occupation as a low strata job, but instead, takes it up skilfully and willingly. The will power of different migrants of taking up small occupations helps them to earn and collect each and every penny day by day and settle better in future.

This struggle many a times brings out a mindset among many people that people who adopt such occupations are lower than the ones who work in the       ‘structural offices’.  Very often we ourselves treat a roadside labourer as if he or she is not performing any kind of important job but instead, we should appreciate their hard work and dedication that they put in. But at the same time, people know the fact that without these, the city may just come to a stand. Because these occupations themselves provide help in the form of labour to different classes of people in the city of Mumbai.  This is the professional gap that does exist in this city which is ignored and not discussed so often.

The concept of ‘Mehnnat ki Atanni’(money earned after continuous hard work and dedication ), came up when I was observing different people working on the streets of Mumbai on my way to college. There were different experiences when I started shooting. Many a times, even faced rejections which included questions like, “Why was so and so person during his labour hours being shot?”  While shooting, many even asked what was the concept behind the photo? Many even had the fear that this photo would be handed over to the BMC. But when they were explained the concept was related to their day to day struggle , they were proud of being a part of this project.

One of my observation and questioning made the owner of Bharat Petroleum angry. I had seen a boy whose age was below 14 years working as a petrol supplier and so just questioned him “ Isn’t this child labour?” and he arrogantly said “ well, that’s his choice and I don’t care what will happen further, If you want you can go and complain.” Through this observation, I guess there will be may such different corners in the city where child labour still exist.

Many photos were shot without any prior permission, which led to blurring of many photos in the process of their continuous working. These photos were shot using a phone camera in places like Charni road, Grant road, Marine lines, Andheri, Vasai and Churchgate

Through these photos, there’s a lesson that I learnt from Mumbai-‘Where there is work, it’s each one’s will power that makes it an occupation as well as a way to earn each and every penny.’

BY NICOLE FERNANDES

TYBMM

SOPHIA COLLEGE

given below are the photos shot by me on the streets of mumbai:

CARPENTER AT VASAI

THE LABOURER BUSY BUILDING UP A WALL AT SOPHIA COLLEGE

TAILORING ON THE ROADSIDE

THE ACTUAL GUARD OF OUR COMFORT

CHAIWALA- 24/7

THE SWEEPER WHO HELPS KEEP THE MUMBAI ROADS CLEAN AND MUMBAIKARS MAKE IT DIRTY

                                            

THE KEY MAKER

THE ONE WHO POILSHES AND GIVES A SPIC AND SPAN MATCH TO OUR ATTIRE

THE ONE WHO IS ALWAYS AT OUR SERVICE WHEN WE GO FOR LUNCH/ DINNER IN HOTELS

     BY NICOLE FERNANDES, TYBMM , SOPHIA COLLEGE

Deva Shree Ganesha

A take on one of the most awaited festival of the city

By Niyati Agrawal

The month of July and August bring a new wave of enthusiasm to Mumbaikars. With a list of festivals lined up, they gear up for Raksha Bandhan, Janamashtmi,  Friendship’s Day, Parsi New Year, Eid, to name a few. But with all this there is something else that excites them – the blue plastic tents with the plain mud-white unfinished Ganesh idols peeping out. The moment one sees those tents, they know Ganesh Chaturthi is round the corner.

The first time when this festival was celebrated is not known but the first time it was celebrated as an organized public event was in 1893. This act was initiated by Lokmanya Tilak with the idea of bringing together people from different communities. He also facilitated poetry recitals, performance of plays, musical concerts etc. that were spread over 10 days of celebration.

Even today, after 119 years this festival is celebrated with the same intention. Haters complain that this festival has been commercialized. They complain to the police if the bhajans on loud speakers are on in the afternoon or if the prasad that is served in the form of dinner goes on beyond 10 in the night and they cannot stand the clattering of utensils.

But is the festival really commercialized?

This festival is a huge event in the suburbs. Housing societies bring huge idols and organize a range of events for the members of the society to enjoy. These functions range from games to mata ki chowki to organizing competitions and even getting underprivileged kids or women and organizing lunch or workshops for them which would help them.

It is been noted over a lot of societies that Ganesh Chaturthi has the highest number of attendance compared to any other events or festival they organize. People attending aarti do not only comprise of ladies or old people. The kids also have an equal participation in it. Some societies have the youth organizing the entire celebration with minimal help from their parents and other people from the society and they end up doing a very good job.

It is a very good sight to see when someone who doesn’t know a word of Marathi offering the entire prayer in it, and understanding the meaning of what he or she is saying. This festival has also taught the younger generation the Marathi traditional folk dance – Lezim. It is not only the maharashtrians who perform it. Sure they perform it well but people from other religion also join in on the fun. Traditional food of different states is also offered as prasad in some societies.

Not only societies but several other non-profit organizations organize Ganapati pandals all over the suburbs. No road you walk on is without a Ganesh pandal. These are open the whole day. Anyone can go in and offer prayers. The organizers or care takers of these pandals will welcome you with a very warm smile. Religion, caste, gender, class are the words forgotten during the 10 days of this festival.

Competitions are organized these days for the Best Pandal or Best Idol. Most of these titles are given on the basis of how eco friendly the organization has been while celebrating this festival. So if these competitions are promoting eco-friendly messages and driving people to celebrate the festival in a way that it is enjoyable for all then there really isn’t a problem with it.

The city is alive for these 10 days. Colorful pandals, bhajans and music everywhere, people coming home early from work to take part in the festivities, the dancing on the road during the visarjan or while getting the idol home, staying with your friends and family till late hours in the night are just a few things to name that people do. The joys, the exhilaration, the excitement, the enthusiasm, the feeling of oneness, the celebration are just a few feelings that people experience over the festival. And once the visarjan is done, the city goes dull again. People have to go back to their regular routines, the only music is that of the car honking and colors are of the politician banners or cars.

The festival still brings together people of all age groups and religion. It promotes the age old culture of the country while adapting to the future. Depending on the organization, it is promoting eco friendly practices and helping the underprivileged.

So do you still think that this festival is commercialized? I think not.

MAIDANS OF MUMBAI

Mumbai is the city where the cost of land is higher than the cost of any other thing including gold. Due to lack of space, residential areas are cramped in a limited space. But one of the few places which keep going Mumbai is, its Maidans or Parks. There are many maidans/parks in Mumbai and all have their own history and importance. So, today I have taken few Maidans and tried to put light on few aspects that are known by few.

  • AZAD MAIDAN: It is also known as Bombay Gymkhana Maidan.

    Azad Maidan near CST

    Mahatama Gandhi had addressed the largest ever political meeting at Azad Maidan in December 1931. So we can understand the importance of it. Also, how old the maidan is. This is a triangular shaped maidan. Maidan is known for the protest meetings and political rallies. But it is Cricket for which the Azad maidan is most famous for. Maidan has 22 cricket pitches and is the regular venue for the inter-school and inter-college cricket matches. This maidan has produced many cricketers including Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli.

  • CROSS MAIDAN:

    Cross Maidan near CST

    It is also known as Parade Ground. The area of the maidan is around 23,000 square meters. The name “Cross” is derived for the old stone Cross (crucifix) built when the city was under Portuguese rule in the 16th century. In earlier times, rallies and parades used to conduct in this maidan. Now, Football is played during the monsoons and Cricket rest of the year. It has eight cricket pitches. Maidan holds importance not only because of its history etc, but also because of places it connects to. Like, part of Mahatama Gandhi Road adjacent to maidan is called Fashion Street, known for its shopping. Then, cutting across the centre of the maidan, there is a shortcut to Chatrapati Shivaji Terminals (CST station) and Churchgate station. Then, there is “Khau Gali” lane near to it. Also, at the southern end there is a well built by Bhika Behram in 1725. It is a very sacred place for Parsis.

  • OVAL MAIDAN: It is named so due to its oval shape. It is situated near

    Oval Maidan near Churchgate

    to Churchgate station. Political rallies and religious functions are banned in the maidan. The area of the maidan is around 89,000 square meters. Sports that are played in the maidan are Cricket and Football. Until 1997 maidan was poorly maintained by state government. Later it was given to OCRA (Oval Cooperage Residents Association) to maintain it properly.

The vast area of land of the Oval Maidan, Azad Maidan and Cross Maidan until the early 20th century was known as Esplanade.

  • AUGUST KRANTI MAIDAN:

    August Kranti Maidan near Grant Road

    It is also known as Gowalia Tank Maidan. It is situated near Grant Road station. Maidan is known as August Kranti maidan because almost seven decades back on 8th and 9thAugust 1942, Mahatama Gandhi had delivered Quit India speech against British. This maidan was built over the water tank, which still exists underground. The reason it is called Gowalia tank because in olden days shepherds used to bring their sheep and cows here to bathe. Now, Football and Volleyball are played during the monsoons and Cricket rest of the year. Now, maidan has been split into different maidans.

    Shivaji Park in Dadar

  • SHIVAJI PARK: It is the largest park of Mumbai. The park is named after 17th Century warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji. It was created by Bombay Mumcipal Corporations in 1925. Park has also witnessed the political rallies and protest, pre and post Independence. The area of the maidan is 1,12,937 square meters. It has many sections which includes Samarth Vyayam Madir(gymnasium), Gymkhana, Scout’s hall, Children’s park, Nana-Nani park, Ganesh Temple even a library. Also, there is a statue of Shivaji Maharaj in the park. Cricket and Football are the two most famous games which are played in the park. Many cricketers trained here including Sachin Tendulkar, Vinod Kambli, Ajit Agarkar, Sunil Gavaskar etc. Also some Football teams play here. Like Arsenal Mumbai Supporters Club, Dadar IX, R D United etc.

As I have told earlier that there are many maidans and parks of Mumbai, because of which, Mumbai is still somewhat greener. I have chosen five maidans. These maidans are important for a Mumbaikars because they are not just a playground but a place where they can relax with their families and friends.

_ Anusha Pathak

TYBMM (Journalism)

Gaadi bula rahi hai…. Seeti bajja rahi hai…

What exactly is the “life” of Mumbai Lifeline…

By Niyati Agrawal

“Platform kramank 2 par aane waali gaadi nau baj kar ekyawan minute ki churchgate ke liye dheemi local hai. Yeh gaadi sabhi stationo par rukegi.”

Most of the Mumbai population starts their day with a very similar announcement. Local trains are called the “lifeline” of this city. However they are in news for all the wrong reasons. Every day we hear this lifeline turning to a death trap, be it the bomb blast or train collisions or people falling off the compartment. For someone who does not travel in the trains would think that it is only a lifeless mode of transport. However for us who travel in the trains, it really is life. It  just doesn’t takes us to and fro our destination it is a part of our lives.

One thing that we look forward to in the trains is train shopping. Yes, you heard it right. Trains are more fashion forward than our showrooms. You get all the latest trends in fashion including accessories, bags, cosmetics and sometimes even clothes. The hawkers sometimes have fixed timings and trains that they go to. These hawkers now know the regular travellers and customers. They take orders from their customers and exchange the good if there is any problem. They have a relation of trust and no one is ever cheated for sure.

Other than clothes pirated copies of books are also sold. This is generally done by young school going children who sell them after or before their school timings. These kids know how to read and very fluently pronounce the names of the books with authors. They are trained enough that they sometime can tell you what the book is about. They are very adorable and keep persuading you by telling that buy the book; it is a very good one; it is an international author! Anything with an international name becomes the bestseller book for them.

One day I was very fascinated on seeing household items being sold. You get everything from scissors to mops to threads and buttons to kitchen lighters and sieves. During the peak hours one even finds food vendors and people selling water and cold drinks in the train. It sure is very refreshing to find such things being sold to you while travelling. These goods are cheap and affordable. Second class ladies compartment also has fish and vegetables being sold. They sure are a treat for working ladies who otherwise would have to go out and buy the home necessities.

Apart from the shopping and train friends you also have bhanjan madalis. It is very normal to find a train pass you by and you hear bhajans being sung in the general compartments. They are equipped with manjiras, dholaks and bells. Everyone joins them in for a little religious treat in the mornings.

Trains have become a great hangout place to catch up with friends you haven’t met in a while. Sometimes you meet them by chance or sometimes you decide which train to take. It sure becomes very noisy in the trains when too long lost female friends meet up. But hey, no complaining. It is always good to see such small incidents which light up someone’s day. Who knows one day even you will meet up with your friend.

You get to read others newspapers in the train. The person sitting opposite you is reading the first page, you read the last page. It is your benefit in the end. You hear the most comic conversations and learn about new developments in serials or movies or even about new songs. Sometimes you learn about things related to academics. You even find people crying in the train. Just offer them water or chocolate and see them smile. They just need a friend and train gives them that. You may even faint in the train without a worry. People will make you lie down, call your family, give you necessary medical assistance and if you are lucky you might even get a Reiki treatment.

With these good times one also encounters the most annoying people in the train and cat fights. They are funny and good till you are not involved. Once you are dragged into them then we know who is going home or to work with a very grumpy mood. These fights are senseless most of the time but fun nonetheless.

Trains are definitely a huge part of a Mumbaite’s life. They have made you late, they have made you reach on time. They have given you quiet compartments in the mornings and catch up on your lost sleep and even given you enough company to be able to travel safe even at 10 in the night. You may have been pushed out of a Virar train or pushed in during the rush hours. You have stepped out of the trains with bruises and wounds. You can crib all you like about trains and curse them but the next day you are again travelling in them.

It is like “you can love them, you can hate them but you can never ignore them.” You have got to travel in the train at least once to experience it because it is not something you get by reading. It is enjoyed first hand.

It happens only in Mumbai…

A compilation of few things typically Mumbai

By Niyati Agrawal

You get most of the things from all around the world in Mumbai. But then, there are some things which you can search the world for but won’t find them. These are found only in Mumbai. These are Mumbai exclusives.

  1. Chinese Bhel : The Chinese replicate the goods from all over the world and adds its own new features to it. The world replicates Chinese food. We added our own touch to it. Chinese Bhel is fried Chinese noodles mixed with ketch up, soya sauce, chilli sauce and vegetables like spring onions, cabbage, carrots, etc. There are a numerous ways in which one can make Chinese bhel, depending on their taste. However this is one food item which is only found in Mumbai.
  2. Train Friends : People have heard of building friends, school friends, college friends, family friends and even friends of friends but Train Friends is one species which is only found in Mumbai. It ranges from 15 year old to 55 year old. Their loyalty lies in saving seats in the train for each other. They share breakfasts, delicacies that they made and have their own little parties in the train. They discuss their family problems to exchanging songs on Bluetooth to taking each other’s advice while buying something in the train. They are also very adaptive. They welcome a new person very openly and sometimes may also forget the old ones. But then they are there in the time of need.
  3. Rasta Shopping : Malls in Mumbai are growing like mushrooms but does it really matter? They are for window shopping. Most of our wardrobes are filled with clothes bought from the rasta. Calling it street shopping kills the essence of it. The most famous places to shop are the Colaba Causeway, Andheri Lokhandwala, Bandra Hill Road and Link Road and Fashion Street. You will get Zara for Rs.300! Need I say more? In Mumbai rasta is the way to be.
  4. Vada Pav Breakfast :  It is a traditional potato vada in between 2 pieces of bread or pav often served with red garlic chutney and green chutney. Everyone at least once in their student life or office career has had vada pav for breakfast. A McDonalds burger is very commonly compared to the vada pav because of the ease both are available everywhere. A vada pav can also be called desi burgers.
  5. Dabbawalas : Mumbai dabbawalas or tiffinwalas are no new term to people all over. With being a case study in the Harvard Business School to being felicitated by Prince Charles of Wales, these dabbawalas are responsible for most Mumbaites being able to eat hot lunch and are also saved from the trouble of carrying it themselves. With a mere color and number code the dabbawalas of Mumbai are the most efficient and on-time food delivery service known to man-kind.

Sapno Ki Nagri- Mumbai

Reasons to visit Mumbai

It was a lazy Sunday morning. I woke up around 10 am, brushed my teeth, had breakfast and went off to bed again. Few minutes later, my cell phone rang. I answered the call. It was my friend Parinita from Guwahati, Assam. She said, “Hey Ruchi, How you doing?” and I replied, “I’m doing well. How are you?” and she replied, “I am good too. I’m visiting Mumbai on 20th June, 2012. I want you to take me through the streets of Mumbai. I have heard a lot about it but never got a chance to visit Mumbai.” And I replied, “You are most welcome. Definitely, will show you the Sapno Ki Nagri and am sure after you walk on the streets of Mumbai, you will definitely visit Mumbai frequently.” And she replied, “(Laughs) Thanks. Buh Bye.”And with this our conversation ended.

On 20th July, 2012, she arrived at my place. Few hours later, we decided to roam on streets of Mumbai. Our journey to discover Mumbai began…

Day 1– First, we took a cab to get to Charni Road station.

From there we traveled in the train to reach our destination Bandra.

Mumbai is incomplete without the local trains. Parinita was surprised to see the crowd.  We soon reached Bandra. From there we took an auto for Elco Market. She shopped from the streets of Bandra. She said, “OMG! What cool and cheap stuff you get here. Why would one go to a mall to shop when one gets everything on the streets?” and I replied, “Yea, it’s cool. I shop from these streets only. Good for college going students like us.”

After she was done with her shopping, we went for lunch to Madras Cafe, Matunga to munch on Idli’s. It’s one of the best South India home in Mumbai. She loved the food out there. She went on munching. She said, “Ruchi, I never liked the South Indian food. But today, I just can’t stop munching on these Idli’s. I love you for bringing me here.” And I smiled at her.

Soon after that, we left for Worli. I decided to show her the Haji Ali Dargah and the Japanese graves which many mumbaikars are not aware of. We first visited the Haji Ali Dargah. She was surprised to see that it was located in the middle of Worli Bay and the concrete footpath that runs to this holy place. In addition, she was surprised to notice that every day 1000 of Indians visit different holy places.

Our next destination was Japanese graves which is located at Dr. E Moses Road, Worli. On our way, she asked me, “How do you know about this place? Do you know its history?” and I replied, “My father once told me about this place ad its history. He told me that the goodwill between Gandhi and Japanese priest Fuji Furuji led to the construction of this cemetery. It was built around 1970’s.” And, she replied, “This is so interesting. Hurry Up! I can’t wait to have a look at those graves.” We soon reached our destination. Both of us were speechless when we saw the Japanese Graves. It is so beautifully maintained but the sad part is people don’t know about it.

By the end of the day, we both were tired. We had no energy left to go and discover few more things about Mumbai but I forced her for Queen’s Necklace- Marine Drive. It is worth visiting especially in the night. The ocean, the cool breeze, the lightnings, all these things make Marine Drive an iconic spot in Mumbai. After requesting, she agreed. While we were walking at Marine Drive, we enjoyed the cool breeze. She said, “Ruchi, Thank you, for bringing me here. It is so relaxing. Please click some pictures of mine.” And, I laughed. I clicked few pictures of her.

After we reached the end of Marine Drive, we saw Victoria. We decided to take a ride. It cost us Rs 150 for 5-7 minute ride. Super Expensive! But the ride was fun. It reminded us of that old era, when there were no vehicles except horse carts.

Our first day of journey to discover Mumbai ended well. The whole day was well spent. Parinita was very happy. When we reached home, she just couldn’t stop talking about Mumbai (the places we visited) to her parents.  I was happy to notice that she really did enjoy discovering Mumbai.

Day 2:  Today, it was our second day to discover Mumbai. Our first destination was to visit the Chinese Temple, Byculla, generally known as Kwan Tai Kon. We thought it would be a good idea to begin our day by worshipping a holy place. Usually, worshippers come during Chinese New Year to visit the temple. Next we went to Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. I took her there, because I wanted her to notice the ancient architecture which is influenced from Victorian Italianate Gothic Revival architecture and Indian (Mughal and Hindu), which was built-in 1887. She did not enjoy watching the heritage building because she was not interested in the history and architecture. We hardly stood there for 10 minutes.

Later we decided we shall visit The RBI Monetary Museum, Fort and increase our knowledge about it. The museum is divided into 6 sections. Section 1: Concepts, Curiosities & the Idea of Money. This section is about the definition of money and gives information on its evolution. Section 2: Indian Coinage. This section displays coins through a time line right from 6-4 century B.C. to those of Independent India. Section 3: Coins to Bank Notes. This section is about the transition of coins to Bank Notes. Section 4 is about Indian Paper Money. This section is about the display also includes representative notes of the Princely States and a collection of exigent money. Section 5: Know Your Currency. This section is about how currency is managed in India and the features of the contemporary Mahatma Gandhi Series of notes and the last Section 6: RBI and You. This section is about everything one wants to know about the RBI and doesn’t know whom to ask. Visiting the museum was the best part of the day. We got to learn a lot of things about the RBI Monetary.

After visiting the above places, we now decided to go for lunch. I took her to Highway Gomantak, Bandra. I took her there because it fulfils all the needs of seafood and the ambience has a Goan feel in it. The most famous dish out there is Kokam Kadi. She enjoyed the lunch. On the other hand, I did not eat anything because I am vegetarian. I survived on soft drinks.

After filling our stomachs, I took her  for the tour of Gateway of India built-in 1911.  The journey to discover Mumbai is incomplete without the tour of Gateway of India.

After that, I took her to Colaba Causeway Market for window-shopping. She loved the collection of accessories out there. She purchased a few of them. Three to four hours were spent shopping.

By now, we were exhausted and hungry. Therefore I decide to take her to Cafe Mondegar. A chilled beer did wonders to our mood. To add to it, the cartoon on the walls of Cafe Mondegar made by Mario Miranda’s  just added flavours to our mood.  With this we ended our two-day journey to discover Mumbai.

On our way to home, I asked her, “What do you feel about Mumbai after the two-day tour?” and she replied, “Ruchi, I can’t explain it in words. It is a beautiful city. I wish to be here forever and not return to Assam.” Her words brought a smile on my face.

Ruchi Nandu – TYBMM