“What were you doing in Mumbai?” they ask and I wanna give them all the cliché answers in the world.
Trying to find myself.
Looking for new experiences.
Knowing what it’s like to be independent
But I just end up saying, ‘I don’t know. Just chilling.’
“That is quite some long chilling huh” they say. Oh and indeed it was.
Today when I woke up in Kolkata, my brain was all kinds of confused. I just stood near the window trying to convince myself that I haven’t woken up in the 1bhk flat in Cotton Green, that today I won’t be listening to the automated local train lady’s voice asking me to ‘Please mind the gap between the footboard and the platform while alighting the train’, that today I won’t be going to Marine Drive to sit and read or scroll through Zomato and find aesthetic cafes to chill in. That today will just be me spending time with my family, riding my scooty and once again getting used to the city that I call home.
Experiences. That’s what I’ve always chased in life and that is exactly why I was in Mumbai for the past one month. I was living the dream life; I was working as a freelance content writer and spending all my free time exploring one of my most favourite cities in India.
I have lived with so many different families and have enjoyed getting to know them, learn about their stories and get a whole different perspective on so many day to day situations in life. I found the confidence to go around everywhere alone, to sit and work in cafes all by myself and absolutely love and enjoy my own company. I have talked to strangers on Marine Drive and local trains and listened to their struggling yet inspiring stories and then walked away without even asking each other’s names. I got to experience both the dark and the poetic side of Mumbai monsoons and for the first time in my life have willingly put down the umbrella to just feel the rain on my skin, to get wet without worrying about anything at all. I have learned to wash my own clothes and take care of my own self and understand my goals and aims in life so much more clearly. I have made some new friends and I have lost some old ones. I have cried on crowded platforms and laughed in empty parks. It’s strange how just one month in a different city can teach you so much. I am so glad I did this because this experience has forever changed so many important things for me.
Now I am back to the grind as they say and I miss everything about Mumbai already. The sea, the people, the food and most importantly all the memories that I made with every single person that I’ve met.