This is Peddar Road. A road on which I frequent more for running than for anything else. Once a week, and this road and its incline is a nemesis of sorts for inept runners like me. A Sunday morning on this road, looks like this.
On weekdays, this road holds more wheels than legs. Definitely more expensive wheels than most districts of Mumbai. Quite naturally, there are innumerable number of hours that you could be forced to spend stuck in a signal. Not knowing what else to do, but for twiddling your thumb and swearing at how ineffective our governments are and how fundamentally vacuous our democracy is.
The government has been proposing a construction of a flyover. Eminent residents living the area have resisted this. For a number of reasons that must be patently obvious to them, but cant seem to make sense to the rest of Mumbai, let alone the rest of the word.
So we see a logjam. Everyday, cars pile up. Inconceivable number of motorists hurl the choicest of abuses. Ofcourse, I don’t know for sure. But given the propensity of several motorists to heap abuse for anything starting from following traffic lights when no one is around, this is more than just probable.
Now its become a political issue. With parties taking a stance for or against. No one wants to give an inch. Life goes on.
Somewhere in rural Maharashtra. One of the roadside stalls had this to offer. Now, red guava is a personal favourite. Naturally, the foot came off the accelerator and the car came to an instantaneous magical halt.
Drooling with vivid pictures in the mind of red guavas, we went in and chose a few guavas.
Only to find just a while later, just as the teeth were sinking into what looked like one heck of a luscious red guava, that it wasn’t red inside after all.
The vendor, without bating an eyelid, informs that the ‘red’ in the ‘red gauvas’ kept on display were ‘painted’ guavas. The only guavas he had were all white !
I am livid. I ask him if he is right in doing this. He shrugs his shoulders and says, ‘Life has to go on sir’!
Theres this store in the corner. Which sells short eats through a window. It was a village sometime back. Now, it’s a well respected suburb of big city Mumbai. In the neighborhood tall buildings scrape clouds. Cars zip in and out of the building and life reeks of a certain ‘busy’ness.
Amidst all this hustle bustle, somehow, this store has survived.
The genial Maharastrian gentleman who runs this store, is usually very warm and receptive. So is he today. He smiles at me and asks ‘2 packs’ ? I smile and nod. Two packs of chewing gum get placed on a bottle.
There is no one today. So I chat up. What does he think of Foreign Direct Investment in Retail I ask. Filled with the usual city-dweller arrogance perhaps, half thinking the old man that he is, there isn’t going to be any answer. Leave alone, a cogent one.
‘Let them come sir’. He says. ‘
They can never be me. I can never be them. We all have our roles’.
With a pause and a smile he says, ‘Life has to go on’ !
Have a lovely week ahead people !