This is a long overdue post about my long weekend trip to Bangalore on Independence Day. Now, it’s an unwritten rule that I spend the three important national holidays (January 26, August 15 and October 2) in Bangalore, usually arguing with anon about all our pent-up differences of opinion. This time, I was lured by the offer to go on our Roadtrip II (refer here for Roadtrip I). So what started with a four-day trip to Wayanad was reduced to a two-day trip to Chikmagalur to an overnight trip to Yercaud to a daytrip to Sivasamudram and finally resulted in a two-hour drive through the city traffic to, hold your breath, Nandi Hills. Now, I am not the one to crib about messed-up travel plans, especially when I was meeting my alleged best friend after six long months ever since our holiday to Cambodia and Manila earlier in the year.
So, instead of driving out of the humdrum of city life for a relaxing and soothing weekend in a cozy and isolated homestay in the midst of the hills, we started the weekend with a bang: by watching the first day first show of, ummm, Once Upon a Time in Mumbai Dobara. Now if the corny dialogues, the annoying clichés and the overall mind-numbing three hours weren’t enough to drive me up the wall, I was watching the movie with anon’s colleagues, i.e. people I have never met in my life, including a two-year old who, irrespective of his cuteness, wasn’t exactly my ideal companion for spending Independence Day. What followed for the next couple of days was almost the same as all my Bangalore trips: meeting the same useless people, getting drunk, trying out new places, and jabbering like there was no tomorrow. Of course, I could have done the same things sitting in Bombay, but somehow there is something about Bangalore that keeps beckoning to me, that makes me go back every few months, that never fails to cast its charm on me.
The journey back was less than perfect as my flight got delayed due to some technical glitch and by the time I landed in Bombay, it was well past midnight. Which is why I decided to board a Tabcab back home and as luck would have it, the cab driver turned out to be a complete jerk who stopped the cab a good two kilometres before my house, took out the bill and promptly refused to drive further. On top of that he was rude enough to ask me “to get down and stop wasting his time”, as I furiously dialed the helpline number to lodge a complaint. Finally, after being unceremoniously dumped in the middle of the road in the middle of the night, I took the help of a kindly auto driver who dropped me home, as I burst into tears.
The incident just reinforced my belief that Bombay was no longer friendly, Bombay was no longer safe, Bombay was no longer home.
Bombay, as the plucky young journalist who got raped a few days back discovered, was yet another city which treated its women with shameless disdain…