Mumbai is utterly unique. Anyone who has ever lived there is ensnared by the peculiar energy that pervades the place and its people. It is an incredibly crowded city and everyone seems to be rushing somewhere in a hurry all the time. In spite of this, there appears to be some sort of underlying method to all the madness. There are some things that truly set the Mumbaikar apart from the Delhiites, the Chennaiites, Kolkatans, et el:
The lifeline of the city, the local trains keep the city running like a rusty but well oiled machine. The fact that these are among the most crowded modes of transport on earth; where people bond for life, is just by the way.
People work in Fort but live in Bhayendar, work in Churchgate but live in Vashi. These names may not mean much for the rest of us, but for the Mumbai commuter, they mean hours of travel each day, split second timing and about a window seat making the difference between a terrific day and an awful day!
Tiny houses, long commutes, squalid living conditions, crowded everywhere! Life is really tough in Mumbai, but the Mumbaikar simply loves it here. The true Mumbaikar will tell you – “I cannot dream of living elsewhere”.
…Does the above make any kind of sense. The true Mumbaikar, on the other hand will understand the many implications of this, will shake their head ruefully and agree wholeheartedly.
While in other parts of India, we are not hesitant to rely on connections and relations to get our way, the Mumbaikar is more likely to be self made, self reliant and proud of it!
Mumbai knows it has its own faults, but Mumbai is also proud of what it is and what it stands for. Mumbai doesn’t mind calling out the faults of others for what they are.
Being a complete hodge-podge of people, languages, customs, lifestyles and faiths, Mumbai has emerged with its own standout lexicon that is unlike the language used anywhere else.
Not only are Mumbaikars rightly proud of the film industry, the industry seems to pervade city. Many of Mumbai's landmarks are internalized by the rest of India without people even realizing this fact!
Every year when Mumbai is inundated, the rains become a unifier; they bring out the best in Mumbaikars.
…No Mumbaikar is any less than a hero. The old joke goes, if a guy managed to brave it through the Mumbai rains to go meet his girl, she should marry him!
Mumbai has no winter, but try telling this to a Mumbaikar, who will resolutely pull out the jacket, the shawl, the muffler and the monkey cap as soon as the mercury dips below 20 degrees.
It is said that anyone can find work in Mumbai; that there is some work for anyone here who is willing to work. Certainly Mumbai is the Indian city most likely to make dreams come true!
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