Mumbai Diary page: Wednesday Whispers

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Lifeguards break gender barrier
While the police did a stellar job with traffic, law and order maintenance during the Ganesh festival. the Baywatch Lifeguards Association at Juhu beach broke barriers at Visarjan.

Fifteen women lifeguards were seen patrolling the beach crowded with thousands as they said goodbye to Ganpati. D Bunty Rao, a lifeguard with the association said, “Many women come for the Visarjan and want to go with the idols in the water, but avoid that due to drowning fears.

This year, we decided to enroll a few female lifeguards so that women devotees could step in the water without fear, as these women would save them in case of any danger in the water.” More power to that, we say.

S Korea Calling for Mumbai boy
It is all smiles for Mumbai’s Yasshan Khambatta (25) as he heads for the Asian Games in South Korea, today. The Games are to be held at Incheon (S Korea) from September 19 to October 4.

Yasshan will be representing India in the show jumping (equine) event. Says his father Zubin Khambatta, at his home in Navroze Baug (Lalbaug) where they live, “Though equestrian sport is expensive and ours is a middle class family, I saw the dream in Yasshan’s eyes and did my best to help him get the best training.

My son’s love for horses and the sport saw him train very hard. Over the years, Yasshan’s hobby which has now become his passion, has cost me substantially, but now seeing him head to the Asian Games to represent India makes me feel that it is all worth it.”

Yasshan goes to Incheon with his horse Olgy. Olgy had cost Rs 40 lakh. Yasshan admits he takes off for S Korea with a mixed bag of emotions. “I am excited, nervous and confident about the Asian Games.

I have been training hard for the last four years and now the coming weeks will be the test of my training,” signs off Yasshan who was in the city for a day yesterday after training in Germany last month. As the man and his horse say goodbye, one can only say Incheon, ahoy.

Kids fly the coop, season
Call it goodbye season and we’re not talking about saying goodbye to Ganpati or Visarjan season. A horde of young men and women (teenagers) really, leave Mumbai at this time of the year. It is migratory season, as many of these students are off overseas to study.

They usually go in August, with many SoBo moms (and dads) travelling with them, to wish their children goodbye and settle them into their foreign schools. Some SoBo schools have entire swathes of students going abroad to study and the prospect of actually staying back in India, causes raised eyebrows.

Moms are usually back in September, struggling to get used to the void in the house, at times. At other times, wiggle their manicured fingers at parties discussing where their kids have gone and what they intend to pursue... ‘I hope he doesn’t get a girlfriend right away...’ is sometimes overheard at party tables.

Whatever the concerns, graver or frivolous, Mumbai’s teens are somewhere West (most probably), on their journey, in which they hope to make their mark in the world. Like the song goes... Papa kehte hain bada naam karega... beta (or beti) hamaara aisa kaam karega… or would the SoBo set, teens included ask: ‘Gaaawwd how tacky. Is that a song? Which movie?’

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