My brother and family moved to Bombay at the end of the summer. After 5 years in Chennai, an opportunity brought him at a cross road and I'm surprised he chose to move to Bombay. Don't get me wrong, k's entire family on both sides are bombayites, I've not heard one sentence spoken about that city without fond nostalgia from them, K was born and spent his early childhood there. But I can't get myself to imagine life in that city.
It's unliveable. Crowded beyond imagination, lacking in basic Civic amenities but what it makes up for is the spirit of it's people and the availability of almost anything.
My brother has taken to the city like a fish to water. His family, the kids especially found Chennai stifling because of the constant chatter that happened around not being Tamil. My ten year old niece in particular had the most trying time making friends. She was glad to leave.
The crowds just unnerve me. It's like no one can find a quiet moment in Bombay. The conveniences tho will stun you. Everything is available at arms length, each area is pretty self sufficient and people are nicer because everyone there is like you a migrant.
I visited bombay atleast 10 times in the past and again in September for Amma's Birthday and saw first hand how much happier this city made my family. It was humbling. For a pucca Hyderabadi used to a slower pace of life and being very laid back, I'm shocked at how my brother has adapted to the new city. It's one thing to meld when you're young, ambitious and energetic. It's another thing to move when you're 40 and with two kids in tow.
I told him I'm very happy to come visit, to see the sights and sounds and eat and shop, but I can't get myself to live there. Sorry but that's just how it is and not that anyone's going to miss me!