It’s very difficult to explain how much I love Bombay. An explanation made more difficult by my decision to move away. I thought Jeet Thayil (a more articulate erstwhile Bombay resident) said it well when he said that no matter how much you love that unforgiving, godforsaken city, at some point it drives you away and makes it impossible for you to survive there anymore.
My own Bombay stay was almost a literal manifestation of Bukowski’s advice to “find something you love and let it kill you.” It’s the only city I know my way around, the only city I don’t mind being alone in and the only city where I feel like I belong. When Bombay was done with me, it left me to its pretty but vacuous sister (Delhi) but I continue to love Bombay in a sad, half witted way.
I get to go back on work quite often and though I don’t have much spare time, I do get to walk around beautiful, crumbling Colaba. I don’t have an opinion on food culture in Bombay and how it compares to Delhi. Well I do, but I doubt it’s worth sharing. Each sister has her own place in my heart.
Written sometime towards the end of 2014.