Saturday, May 9, 2009

Scenes of India

Let me start from the time we landed at the Chattrapati Sivaji International Airport in Mumbai. When we were in the heart of the airport I almost screamed with joy,"Khed! Here we come!"
 Khed is my hometown. You can imagine a person's joy of coming to India after 4 years. The airport was unusually empty except for the passengers of Kuwait Airways and Jazeera flights and a few sleepy security guards. We had landed at the airport during the early hours of the morning. It was hardly 4 o'clock. I was traveling with my family- mother,father and elder sister. We collected our luggage and trooped out of the airport. My uncle and some relative were coming to pick us up. At the gate,we ran into them. Greetings,hugs and kisses were exchanged and we all hurried to the car. We all got in and the car moved out of the airport area. Looking through the window one can see the old and new sights of Mumbai. As we passed the posh are of the airport and into the city,it saddens ones heart to look at the rag-clad beggars sitting on the pavement and looking mournfully at the people who passed them. We caught sight of the first (Indian)dog after many years and it was quite pleasant to hear it bark, as though it was welcoming us into the sin city. The unmusical voice of the crows, soon reached our ears. We were passing,at that time at the most dirtiest place in Mumbai. The filthy dogs were making a loud racket. The stench of the uncovered drains reached our noses and filled us with disgust. The ragged beggars under their shacks looked as though they never did have a bath since two years.

Ah! The same old India! The same old Bombay! It hadn't changed even a bit since four years. Soon we were out of Mumbai and in some other city. We caught sight of the first cow since our arrival. Whatever city this was, it was hundred times better than Mumbai. At least it did not look much like a city, more like the countryside. The great mountains rose before us. On all sides there was greenery and nothing else. It was indeed a breath-taking scene.

It was almost noon. We ladies, having fallen asleep, woke up feeling ravenous. Mom, being a very strict disciple of cleanliness, had vowed before coming to India never to eat anything made outside. Like-Say no to 'pav',the traditional Indian bun.Say no to the 'bhel puri',etc. No to the Indian restaurants. But under given circumstances since she was very hungry and helpless, she asked the driver to stop at the next clean restaurant. We all trooped in the restaurant. It was a good, clean one. We decided to order 'puri bhaji'. Oh Lord! Deccan people always make spicy food. That aloo bhaji was so spicy that it felt like hundreds of cleats stomping on the floor of my tongue.

Anyway, we resumed our journey. Soon we were in our town! Cheers! I was so delighted to see the same old shops and same buildings. We unloaded our luggage in our flat and on the insistence of my uncle, we went off to lunch at his house. 
Indeed, we had a very pleasant time amidst all the cries, hugs and kisses!!

3 cheers for the Incredible India!!!

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