Saturday, February 13, 2010

Notes from travels - Bombay

Part 2 of my travel journal: randomly scribbled notes.

Screw you, Paolo:
Stuck on the bus from hell. The scenery outside is amazing but the bus itself is a torture chamber, plush with puking travelers and a Govinda-David Dhawan marathon. I catch myself laughing along with the third film. Immediately look away and turn on my ipod.
Paolo Travels has a compassionate heart & still employs buses that passed their prime decades ago. This filly throws out petrol fumes through the AC vent and looks like it's done one tour too many in I-rack.
At Belgaum, we pass a hoarding for a local hair saloon that's endorsed by Keith Urban. I'm sure Keith's anxiously waiting by the post box for his cheque...
Man calls. Poor signal but enough to inform me that we'll meet in Bombay. Whatever. But yay!

Bombay, at last!:
Retarded bus conducter tells my friend to pick me from 'bridge ke baaju se'. Which bridge and at what point on the bridge are factoids he cannot provide.
I get off 'somewhere near the airport' and immediately fall in love with Bombay: it is 12:30 am and the city is wide awake. There are at least 35 autos waiting to take me to my destination.
I feel safe and alive.
Give my friends the longest hugs.

Take a long walk along the sea. Carter Road, Jogger's Park, Abhi-Ash's ex-home.
Weather divine, tan still bizarre.
Walked along Linking Road that I keep calling Linkin Park.
Sight Karisma Kapoor at Costa Coffee and die of alliteration.
Sight VJ Anusha at Mango. Ho hum.
Sight Sachin Tendulkar's under-construction home and V informs me of crazy fans who come and yell "Sachin! Sachin! Bahar aaaa!" outside it. Am tempted to do the same but desist.

Mumbai or Bombay?:
I can't bring myself to call this city Mumbai. That's not how I relate to it.
This city is constantly buzzing. I get why they compare it to New York, which roars.
Before you know it, it's midnight. I'm loving the energy but have no idea when to go to bed.
If you have money and live in Bandra, I'm told life can be quite good.
Finances have spiralled out of control. Walked into optical store to get V's contacts, walked out with Rs. 3,000 shades.
Good thing, I'm a highly impractical person when it comes to material things.
It's official: friends make the world go round.
Another theme has been The Confession. Must have the conversation soon. Bombay, it seems, has become the designated location for it.
Young & struggling in Bombay:
Many of the people I meet here are young and struggling to make it in show business or the arts. They all seem to be in a perpetual state of exhaustion yet they won't stop.
Could I do this? No, and I don't regret it for a second.
These guys are some of the sweetest people I've met and they look at me and say - "you'll be moving to this city in no time..." I laugh and say, "We'll see" even though I know my answer will be no.
Andheri to Bandra: the longest auto ride in history. Two and a half hours to get home.
Shopped on Hill Road, to which I have lost my heart. Bought the world's most awesome outfit for Rs. 200. This would be unheard of in Delhi.

Part-ay:We're having a party. BYOB: Bring your own boy. Plan is to invite men we have crushes on but who don't know how we feel. I'm going to wear a miniskirt, a boa and shades. Am feeling reckless, crazy and brave.
Musing: I want my own home. My own space to be own authentic self.
Bunny ears and booze have been purchased.

Post Party Post Mortem:
It's been declared the strangest party ever. Men in masks and boas, music that couldn't be played loud because of the cops, weeping hosts and passed out party planners.
Had the conversation. Made the confession. Heartbreak comes in waves. He won't have anything more than friendship but I have to say - it was the classiest rejection in history. Also the shortest, lasting all of seven minutes.
I broke my TA lifescript.
Movie star at party broke our 500-buck whiskey bottle. Then stormed out because we forgot to kiss his feet.

Last Day:
Much weeping, then laughing then weeping again. The stress of the last year is melting away. The conclusive outcome of the situation hits.
Sweet friends offer to drop me to station but I want to take the taxi ride alone.
Worli sea link becomes site of more crying. Then, see poster for film called 'Don't Break My Heart'.
: If you break my heart, I will break your bones.
God, I love this city.

Agast Kranti Rajdhani:
Continuing theme of crappy journeys.
Am really sick and can't cope with upper berth. Ask co-passenger and Veer Savarkar lookalike if he'd give me his seat. He refuses.
Luckily two gentlemen getting on at Borivali are more than obliging.
Next seen, Veer Savarkar is surrounded by loud, smelly Gujju family with obnoxious children and woman who periodically whips out her breasts to feed her spawn.
The Classy Rejector calls to ask me out to dinner with his friends. He's forgotten I'm on a train and he pretends that nothing happened last night. I tell him I'm in the middle of nowhere, hang up and cry.

Bombay opened me up. It fit in beautifully with my Decade of No Fear. It freed my heart. How can that be bad?

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