Archive for October, 2008

Boys In The Water

If you’ve been in Mumbai and not taken a ferry ride from the Gateway of India, you should…go jump into the (dirty) water!!!!! And there you might catch a glimpse of the humanness underneath the gritty mask this city wears.


I saw these boys splashing about between the ferries parked (anchored?) near the steps leading down from the Gateway to the water. All the ferrywallas yelling did nothing to dampen their enthusiasm.


Afloat on a makeshift raft of a discarded plastic bag stuffed with heavenaloneknows what (cork? discarded plastic refuse? thermacole?), they splashed about, three on one while the fourth lay afloat, peaceful in his solitary swim.

Smooth Traffic & Funny Mails: Thank You, Mr.Thackeray

Raj Thackeray was arrested yesterday. Ho hum, so what else is new?

I woke up to the news channels airing footage shot hours ago, of the MNS chief being escorted into the police van at Ratnagiri and a few fancy-looking maps showing blinking dots in the areas of Borivili, Andheri, Dadar and Worli.

Violence has erupted in parts of the city.

…the TV anchor informed me over my breakfast. And..

MNS workers have been protesting the arrest. This comes in the light of the weekend attack on the railway examination centers to protest under-representation of Maharashtrians in the test.

I was still yawning, glued to the television as I was. And then I snapped the set shut, got ready and left for work.

The roads were not empty. They were the way a civilised, metropolitan city’s roads should be. Vehicles running at least 2 feet from each other in parallel lanes, a few stray pedestrians crossing only during the traffic signals, short signal wait-times, no undue honking. My normal 45-minute commute took all of 20 minutes. Thank you Mr.Thackeray for giving us one day of normal commuting.

People came into work. But of course. No, I’m not going to go on about the resilient spirit of Mumbaikers, our courage, our bravery etc. I’m no braver than the next person. All I am, is practical. Between floods, riots, bandhs, public transport strikes, communal clashes, infrastructure breakdowns and politico arrests, I have a job to do. And every day brings a new reason to not go to work. Yet, we do. That’s not courage, it’s just acceptance of the way things are.

From the last time this happened, I figured the media was just creating a hullaballoo as usual. No one who goes out in this city everyday really believes the news channels anymore (and certainly not a certain Dilli-based channel which thinks that Mumbai starts and ends at Churchgate and that Tardeo and Juhu are far-flung railway stations). Sure enough, come evening and I had a smooth commute back home as well. No, I did not spot any blood on the streets, no slapped-around taxi drivers, I did not get pelted with stones and the city seemed no scarder than usual.

If anything, the highlights of the day were how people chose to deal with the chaos. My Little Lord received the following email from HR:

Dear All

Due Unstable environment with regards to Raj Thackeray arrest, management has decided that all associates can leave by 4.00pm.

With Warm Regards,
HR Manager

Tue, Oct 21, 2008 at 4:11 PM

My colleagues were far more prompt and shot off the following (very convincing) mail:

There is a slight issue here at the Mumbai office. Due to some political issues there is absolute civil unrest and the city is at the brink of riots breaking out. The team will need to rush home. Im not sure if we’d be able to make it to the call today.

* So I’m jaded and cynical. Go read the full story here.

Our very own Mumbai Shutterbugs

Mumbai Shutterbugs

Mumbai Shutterbugs

Photo courtesy SIDKING

Looking at the serious shutterbug activities in Bangalore, Chennai and Delhi I was beginning to get a complex. Presenting our very own city shutterbugs. These are a buch of photo enthusiats, who meet periodically at a common place to capture some amazing pictures and share some cool tips. I had attended one of their outdoor shoots at the Dadar Flower Market. Its still in its infant stages, by which I mean there is a lot of stream lining to be done and loads of scope for improvement that is if they want to do serious photography with loads of fun. Nevertheless I am glad that these bunch of people have taken the initiative to come together. My take on the entire group is that most of them are pretty new to photography but there are quiet a few who has an eye for details. I also feel that such group get together is a great opportunity to learn/share new photography tricks/tips. So cheers to the team and hoping to see a lot of activities from these shutterbugs.
To dig more about this group’s activity check this link here.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Read more here

Dadar Flower Market Photowalk

Last Sunday 14 (I am not so sure about the number) shutterbugs joined together at the Dadar Flower Market and took some amazing photographs. Unlike other cities, in Mumbai where life is always in the fast lane, this was pretty much a change of course for people to turn up on a weekend this early and still ahve fun. Hope to have more such meets in the future.

Here are a few pictures taken by yours truly :)

Each line has a story of its own

Dadar Flower Mkt Photowalk

Dadar Flower Mkt Photowalk

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