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March 4th, 2005


3 rd March 2005


I landed in Mumbai, at about 12:05 AM. Back in the city, I wondered whether I had at all traveled to Bangalore. In Banaglore, I met my friend’s mother and told her about my potential trip to Amsterdam and how I wanted to go to London as well. She said to me, “Amsterdam is beautiful. London is just like Bangalore, though of course, more cleaner than Bangalore!” I listened to her carefully. And I again questioned myself about diversity and divercity. Are cities becoming monocultures? What is it about diversity and divercities that is critical for sustainability or for anything for that matter?


Back in Mumbai, late at night, I felt like jumping out of the taxi and running madly and wildly on the roads. I wanted to embrace the roads, as much as I could. I wanted to gather the entire city in my embrace, as much as I could. And then I realized that the city is what I imagine it to be. Himanshu had said to me, “The city is a monster. It is what you imagine in it your head!” Maybe what I imagine is that part of the city which I frequent more regularly – South Mumbai, Central Mumbai, Bandra! Maybe Borivali falls out of my imagination or for that matter, the interiors of Mahim! Maybe I just bypass Mahim without experiencing deeply – just the outsides!


As I re-enter the city, I begin to think of what my walking and talking about the city does to the city? How does the city see me? How do city people see me? Thus far, I guess I am looked at as an incomprehensible entity in terms of both, my religious and professional identity. I wonder whether I am a stranger among the people in the city. Who am I to the city? I raise this question more out of curiousity than out of a sense of lament for identity.


I guess that’s all for the day!



  1. March 4th, 2005 at 02:29 | #1

    one of the interesting things of Bangalore airport is that the coffee shop there has Internet access ( + a coffée, but take care to buy the two together) , but when I was there , there was only one comp working….

  2. March 4th, 2005 at 02:43 | #2

    Now I don’t think that London is like Bangalore ! The older a city the more difference it has in character. And cities in Europe take similar aspects  from their historical spheres of influence- Amsterdam has that brick-built look that you can trace all across the Northern and Baltic coast up to Riga.( All old trade- Hanse- towns..)  You can find some of that brick architecture in London too. Paris on the contrary has very few of that, it’s center is very Hausmannien, comparable to Madrid for that matter. When I went to Nancy, I wondered at an old square, why it reminded me so much of the northern architecture ( Berlin or further)…..as a matter of fact, the count who had ordered the building of the square had been king of Poland…

    Of course when it comes to modern buildings traces get mixed up. Architects today work worldwide and are influenced by the world.

  3. March 4th, 2005 at 08:02 | #3

    The more you try to question your identity in the city, the more you will get confused….

    Best of luck….(find out the answers to your questions..) 

    🙂 have fun.

  4. March 4th, 2005 at 13:46 | #4

    Zainab: I agree with you on management books – there is a very fine and somewhat blurred lines between management and self help books. My personal opinion on self help books is quite down on the Book-reading scale. It’s so text book-ish, to lead life through a book that teaches you to take baby steps !

  5. March 4th, 2005 at 14:14 | #5

    as long as i can relate,understand ,enjoy and learn from something ,i dont mind wht it is ..a book ,a experience ..whteva fukk it is.

    wellthe crowds in airport maybe more subtle wid thier glances towards women…as they r the so called gentlemen of our society…they r not suppossed to behave and stare at a lady commuter with “hawas bhari nazar” like wht happens in railway staion…but the built in nature is same …wht we show maybe different.