Recently, I presided over a session of “khud-ki-adalat“* to assure myself that some new developments on personal front must be accepted on the face value and to let everyone have clear idea about it. Specially my super-dominant “Mrs AlwaysDoubtful“ (MAD hence-forth) self. She does show up most of the times, un-invited and has a bone to pick with ever-glad “Mrs YouLiveOnlyOnce“ (YOLO hence-forth)self. The interrogation session went somewhat like this.
MAD: Whats wrong with you these days?
YOLO: Oh… I believe the cupid’s arrow has struck me. Now the world around appears the best place to be!
MAD: Aren’t you nearing half century of age. I think the grey matter inside you is either drying or dying up fast and showing up on the crown.
YOLO: Love is ageless and eternal.
(Spirit of this lady is so infectious that I always feel half my age in her company!)
MAD: Should I remind you that you are married for two decades and its a blissful matrimony so far. And you have so called, not just one but two angels… a ‘work-in-progress-adult’ and an about-to-be-teen’.
YOLO: A sticky wicket, is that what you mean? Dont worry. Its a winning pitch for my ‘ohana’**.
MAD: Do you think your long-standing partner will have no objection about it?
YOLO: Dont colour it as a scene from a sordid soap opera. Why would one need an NOC from anyone, including better half if one loves that someone earnestly, have grown fond of it and it’s not merely an infatuation? Its my personal space.
(Mrs YOLO sometimes surprises me by putting her feet down!)
MAD (with much sarcasm): Paint the town red! Proclaim your love, out in open…February is the month of expressing and spreading love. Whats stopping you?
YOLO (beaming with sun-shine): That’s what I intend to do here…trumpet my love.
I can see knitted lines on your forehead and eyes narrowing with suspicion. Before you think that there’s “A” rated content ahead let me divulge Mrs. YOLO’s recent crush, love, Valentine…
Dirty minds, what else were you expecting?
Needless to say “Khud-ki-adalat” has given the clean chit to Mrs YouOnlyLiveOnce, sending Mrs AlwaysDoubtful to her oubliette till she finds another bone to pick.
Landing at Mumbai four years back, as a wandering soul, I did not have an iota of inkling about my future affair with the city. It was just another city of adopted residence like a few earlier, across the globe. My affair with the city sprouted without me noticing it and matured gradually, just like fine blend whisky!
Like a mushy eyed lover, I love to call it Maximum City aka MaxC (in a sing song way MaaaaaxC) The trend of using “love”, “baby”, “darling”, “janoo” etc etc for one’s beloved got into main stream much later after I fell in love with my better half. And now if I start calling him so, I am sure he will turn his head in all directions to find out whom am I hollering at. Sigh… So grabbed this opportunity before my affair with MaaaaaxC turns antique.
What was that made my heart tick for MaaaaaxC? Blushing, blushing!
A lot, I must say. Maybe…
… its vibrant pulse
…its spirit that never dampens
…its incessant rains
…its frill like breezy sea shores and hood like rusty mountains
…its attitude of accommodating everyone seamlessly, in its folds
…the spread of food, right from road side eateries to designer food studios.
…it’s persona as the city of contrasts; Antilla to Dharavi.
…its eclectic mix of history and avant-grade; colonial era buildings to Worli Sea Link
…its ever-overflowing local trains or six sigma Dabbawala or Ganesh festival
…its versatility to find solution to every issue, challenge in jiffy (Simply stated “Jugad”)
…the complexity of its rich cultural make up, a melting pot
May be this and may be that…
Whatever it maybe, it simply grows on you, compels you subtly and one fine day, you wake up to realise that you are madly in love with it. Mrs YOLO was ‘happy to be victim’, ‘be struck down’ and thus went gaga over it. No secret then that I decided to tow Mrs YOLO.
Now, that I have proclaimed my love, let me share how I intend to live up to my beloved…
I’ve proposed (to self) to discover each and every nook of Mumbai. Call it fantasy date. May be a series of such would be needed!
I’ve promised to post about everything that makes MaaaaaxC ‘magnum opus’, on my blog. Cant send love letters to MaaaaaxC, its such a period piece. A new age love, new age mode of communication!
I’ve taken solemn oath to embrace everyday with buoyant spirit just like MaaaaaxC and go on without stopping ever till I RIP. I must rise to the stature of my love, isn’t it?
I’ve crossed my heart to kiss the worries bye (Mrs YOLO is a staunch supporter of this) as I have learnt from MaaaaaxC that every challenge could be overcome. Wish to think on the lines of MaaaaaxC and prove the adage, “Great minds think alike”.
In the sea of Mumbai admirers, lovers, I may remain ‘other’, ‘love sick’, ‘besotted’ soul. But who bothers???
For I love Mumbai. A shout out is a must. So here it goes..
“Dear Mumbai, with you its different“