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Perfect make-up and fancy hair-dos are all of no avail when the Mumbai rains strike! Here’s a hilarious account of one woman’s monsoon travails.
Here, I start the perfect day. Today, after ages, I could finish a total 60-minute workout.
“Whoa! I don’t feel any less fit than Malika Arora at the moment.”
So…why leave any stone unturned? Let me make the most of this moment, this day.
I spare some 15-minutes more from my usually ‘rushed’ mornings. With that perfectly winged eyeliner and a soft (yet sensuous) colour on my lips, I am ready to leave for work.
But as the escalator escorts me to the ground floor, I get the first mild shock of my life.
THE AMAZING MUMBAI RAINS…
No, wait! It’s not just rains, mind you. It’s our amchi Mumbai rains.
Only yesterday, I was chatting with a dear friend of mine who stays in Delhi.
“Oh how lucky you are! Monsoon’s already arrived in Mumbai? Send some here also na. It’s so romantic.”
Recalling the previous day’s conversation, I looked at the merciless downpour. But with my fullest sense of gratitude, I tried making the most of this ‘romantic’ sight.
By the way, in case you’ve forgotten, I am looking like a million bucks – to flaunt karna to banta hai.
I hurriedly walked to catch an auto rickshaw. And I was lucky to see one at the exact spot I wanted to be. With long strides, I approached the rickshaw with fast steps and my eyes were beaming with joy. Certainly rains were here to make me happy.
And as I was like only two steps away from boarding the rickshaw, I could feel my body floating in the air.
Could it have been more romantic?
I wish it could.
Because the next moment when I gained back my senses, I was lying flat on the ground and heard a big thud.
I was floating in the air, like literally?
Yes, in all the hurry and the process of glorifying myself, I forgot to put on the rubber chappals that I’d bought to avoid any slips and skids in the mischievous rains.
By the time I could gather my courage and my courage and my 68 Kg light body off the ground, there were already 4-5 people surrounding me. And I could see from the corner of my eyes, how hard they were trying not to laugh out loud.
I could feel my cheeks turning red and my eyes fuming with anger and embarrassment.
Wanted to give a tight punch on these people’s faces…and then run away.
But as sophisticated as I had to behave, I instantly managed to bring back the sheepish smile on my face. Confident outside (and crying inside), I was like “hee hee hee…I am Ok. Oh thanks, it’s fine” – and quickly hopped into the rickshaw.
What worse, I could see that the rickshaw driver too, with his toothless grin.
“Idiot”, I murmured.
So the first one hour in the office was invested in fixing my expensive looks and mending my self-confidence. I was adamant – “Baarish ka pura mazaa lena hai.”
Can’t spoil the day just because of one stupid incident.
The day at work was no better – plus there were only a few familiar faces – many of them skipping work to enjoy the weather. In short, I received almost no compliments. On second thought, was I looking like a clown?
By the evening it was raining cats and dogs. Traffic was at its worst and I therefore, decided to take the local train.
“I would leave by 4. Can beat the rush.” What proactiveness!
But I guess the entire janta was far more proactive than me. I could see a huge flood of human figurines as I stepped in the station.
Trains were, of course, running late – and the crowd, at its peak. If I had time, I would have done a mock census survey there and then.
So, after a ‘short’ 15-minutes delay, I could see the train approaching the station.
That moment, just before you’re ready to board the Mumbai local, is ‘the’ moment – no one can mess with you.
And you? You’re sort of carrying an invisible dagger, no. Come near me and I’ll stab you.
Five seconds of pushing, and pulling, and nudging…and I could make my way to the macchi market…oops sorry inside the train – with my butt hanging out, drenching in rain.
Yayyy, me an achiever!
But God had other plans. That proud moment of winning a battle soon turned out to be the next big shock when some huge weight shoved me forward is the tightly packed compartment.
“Chal na aage.”
In disbelief, I looked back. A middle aged woman with her kajal smeared eyes, gave me the most disgusting look.
“Abe chal na. Sunayi nahi deta. Pata nahi kahan se aa jaate hain.”
And I timidly, obediently, made some space for her.
After being thrown off at my station, I was so exhausted with the fiasco that I had to almost drag myself back home.
The house was smelling of well-cooked masalas – the maid Kamala, was making some interesting stuff for dinner.
Sigh! Some relief.
Aghast, she came running to me with a glass of water.
“Didi, aap thik to ho? Kya hua?”
What comfort in her voice. Throughout this mad day, someone finally made efforts to ask me if I was Ok. I was waiting for this…and couldn’t help but narrate how the brutal rains spoiled my day… (and shattered my confidence).
Taking a pause, Kamala replied in a calm demeanor,
“Wahich to main keh rahi thi didi, Sunday ko jab baarish gira tha. Par aapne kitna sunaya tha mujhko, chutti lene par. Pagaar kaatne tak ki dhamki di thi.”
“Chalo, abhi main nikalti hai. Phir baarish shuru hoga to mera haalat bhi aapke jaisa ho jayega.”
Wow! That was the thing I was waiting for. I wanted to kick myself as I saw Kamala rushing towards the door, leaving me baffled.
The next step was important. I threw my make-up kit in the garbage bin.
“Not until the monsoons are over”, I promised to myself.
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