Mumbai Diary: Thursday theme

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

Water’s the matter
When the heat is on, the clear thirst-quenching liquid becomes more precious than cold cash, apparently. This diarist witnessed a beggar at a railway station go up to a man, who gave him a couple of coins. But what the beggar was asking for was not money but a sip of water from the bottle the man was carrying. It is said that giving water to the thirsty is an act that invites blessings — perhaps this particular man had not heard of this, or did not take it seriously, because he refused to part with his bottle and the beggar had to move on. We don’t know about blood but might we say that the milk of human kindness is thicker than water!

Status update – in transit
IN THE bustling city of Mumbai, even neighbours go for days without seeing each other, so it is not surprising that friends who live in different suburbs don’t see each other for indefinite periods of time. But that is in real life, of course. With the advent of social media, however, physical distance has practically ceased to matter. Recently a colleague ran into someone he knew quite well, at Churchgate station. The two had not met for almost three years. 

As both were rushing for their trains, they had time only for a hasty greeting, and they parted with the classic line: “Facebook pe milte hain!”

Crowdsourcing: Ever-busy Churchgate station. Pic/Suresh KK

Have a heart!
One of the security guards at the Aarey Colony has seen many leopards in the area over the last several years that he has been posted there on duty. Recently, one of our colleagues met this guard and asked, “So, any attacks recently?” meaning to say, leopard attacks. 

The guard seemed not to realise the context, and replied, “Not at all, everything is fine, blood pressure is normal.”
Our colleague started laughing and another security guard had to explain to the “healthy” one that the question referred to leopard attacks. Fortunately, the answer to that also was “No!”

In the arms of Hypnos
Oh sleep, it is a blessed thing, beloved from pole to pole, said the poet Coleridge. And in the ever-busy city of Mumbai, those who work at odd hours of the clock have to find time to sleep somewhere, somehow.

What dreams may come: Trolley that packs a sleep volley. Pic/Anuradha Varanasi

This young boy has succumbed to the god of sleep, never mind that it happens to be in a trolley used for storing cans and other hospital equipment, lying outside the civic-run KEM hospital.

Ticket to ride
On the second day of the city’s bus strike yesterday, the local trains saw a hike in passenger numbers — as well as ticket checker (TC) numbers, apparently, for “Ticket pass please” could be heard in practically every compartment, where normally no TCs are seen. The railways may well have netted extra by way of fines, but surely they could have been kind to the inconvenienced commuters and refrained from upping their checking zeal?

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