Not everything has to be about something. So, I decided to write this post about rains in Mumbai. It is an extremely unique experience. Tell me your views on this post!
Rain had attacked Mumbai like bullets for four days non-stop. Everything was wet. Nearly all the streets were clogged, the whole city at a standstill. While some parts of Mumbai were smart enough to not venture out of their houses, those zealous and brave citizens who had taken their chances were now stuck in traffic. Horns blared around impatiently; angry, fed-up drivers were peeking out of their cars carefully, trying not to douse themselves in water, trying to find out the reason behind the hold-up. Voices were being raised in the distance. The traffic lights were blinking orange in patterns, denoting that it was out. A poor old policeman stood amidst the chaos, trying to solve the complicated knot of cars around him. He stood no chance to resolve the issue anytime soon.
The fifth day, skies cleared. The ugly, gloomy grey dissolved into a shining, sunny blue. A depressed Mumbai turned jolly. Droplets sparkled in the sunshine. It was blissful for those, who wanted it to stop. Finally, the rains had halted.
Nothing is permanent. Knowing this, many citizens had finally stepped out of their homes to meet other people, or to restock their houses knowing that the rain could resume anytime soon. They rushed in every possible directions, umbrella or raincoats folded in one hand while shopping bags or purses in the other.
Elsewhere, vendors were removing the protective plastic sheets from their products: clothes, spices, jewellery etc. They were checking the skies frequently to determine whether they needed the protective sheets again. After a deep coma, Mumbai was living again.
It felt great. Those who had lots of free time dared to go to the beach area, where the waves slapped the rocks and sand on the shore sadistically. The sand itself was wet from the showers, the day before. Many of the beach-goers, who had mindlessly taken a seat in the sand, had problems because the wet sand had lodged into places. Dry sand is easy to shake off, but wet sand? That is a whole different story.
While the market vendors restarted their businesses for the day, food vendors on the beach were also not so far behind. The fastest type of food vendor was the roasted corn stall. He pulled his cart energetically, setting up the coal and the stove. Pulling the sack on top of the cart was not an easy task, yet he seemed to do it with relative ease. One after the other, he pulled the husk of the corn, neatly piling the raw corn in a stack, ready to cook until the coal was ignited.
Within minutes, the aroma of hot, cooked corn (which was rubbed with spices) seemed to emanate from the cart. The beach, wet and almost about to dry from the weak sunshine, was alive with hunger. Like moths to a flame, the beach-goers were flitting towards the corn stall.
Meanwhile, the Shawarma Guy was also readying himself. It took a bit longer for the Shawarma stall to be set-up than the Corn stall. The smell of spicy, cooked meat wafted through the atmosphere, mingling with the aroma of cooked corn. Heaven for hungry tourists.
In other parts of the city, children were dancing and playing. Heavy rains had assured that their school would be shut down for the day. All the lectures had been cancelled because of the heavy downpour. The children had not been allowed to rejoice because of the worried mothers, who didn’t want them to catch a cold or fever. But now? The rain was gone. The skies were clear. The clouds had disappeared. It was the perfect time to rejoice.
Their happiness was short-lived, however. It was raining – again! In no time, people were scurrying inside their homes or hunting for cover once more. The vendors were rushing like crazy to hiding spots. Protective sheets lined their carts and stalls once more. The rain showed beach-goers no mercy. In the matter of seconds, every person on the beach was totally drenched. The pitter-patter from the rain could be heard forever and ever … or so it seemed.
Everyone wondered how the rain had begun once more. A moment before, the skies had been clear. Now, however, the gloominess had returned. The clouds had ganged up together, so that the thick grey hid the bright blue of the sky. Droplets of water attacked every inch of the city heavily.
Those, lucky enough to be indoors, sighed in relief at their better judgement of not venturing out.
An old woman sat near the window, in just another apartment in Mumbai, quoting musingly, “Life is like rain. One must always be prepared,” while her grandchildren pondered in interest.
It was time for the Monsoon in Mumbai once more.
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