My third day in Mumbai and I get a wet rainy welcome! Unlike Delhi, rains here come with its own whims and fancies. No storm, wind, dust…just clouds and rains are here, like guests who come uninvited. This time around, rains made Mumbaikars wait a lot, and finally arrived with me! Somehow all my friends have been telling me since morning – madam, you came and brought rains.
Thinking of rains, the first thing that comes to my mind is ginger tea and hot pakodas, perhaps sooji halwa as well, if mom is in a generous mood. But since everything in Mumbai has a different nomenclature, pakodas here become Bhajiyas…big dumplings of potatoes (needless to say, sweet) and onions, bound generously in gramflour batter, and deep fried. As everybody in office enjoyed Bhajiyas, I missed Delhi, where we order an assortment of onion, potato, chilli, paneer pakodas.
The good old lauki/ghiya has become dudhi here. I still am unable to understand why the vegetable vendor wraps each dudhi in plastic…if it is to save it from the rains, why such partiality towards dudhi? Hehe…
For first timers, rains may play spoilsport, but the normal Mumbaikar has befriended even the moody rains. Truly, the city never stops. While I was frowning at the sight of my sandals, spoiled in rains, my friends’ shoes were shining, despite their long travel in metro….oops locals. Aaakhir raaz kya hai? I wondered. Then a friend told me, people keep an extra pair of shoes in office, and wear plastic flip flops to work. Also, never before have I seen raincoats and umbrellas of this variety. Even spotted a guy wearing a plastic pants and enjoying the rains!
Mumbai women too know, how to tweak fashion to their convenience. Spotted many women in sarees who had tied it like a skirt, but didn’t like to miss their local train!
Throughout the day, I was looking at the rains, reading twitter updates about water logging (even the Mumbai metro wasn’t spared by rains) and wondering what would be the sight on roads in the evening. But what I saw in evening took me by surprise. Everyone went around doing their business as usual. Apart from few potholes, there were no major water logging on the roads. In Delhi, the day we have rains like this, reaching home is an endless struggle with water logging on every road.
When things don’t go the way we want them to be, we go in the cribbing mode. Perhaps we should take inspiration from people who have learnt to befriend the odds. Not even a single person in office was making faces at the sight of heavy rains. It was first major shower of the season, and Mumbaikars celebrated it like a festival with tea and Bhajiyas!
As much as I miss Delhi, I also salute the spirit of Mumbai, the city that never stops.
And before I sign off for the day, one more update…mom in law finally got her spicy food. She threatened the steward to prepare North Indian style North Indian food – hot n spicy else she will enter the kitchen and prepare herself!
She will have to wait for a few days to relish her Dilliwalla alu subzi though!