The Mumbai weekend


Our last stop, before the airport, was Bunny’s apartment.

The neighbourhood reminded me of another I had spent my school years in. That was another city, at another time, but the elements were common and, as this view showed, enduring: a street with small shops bearing colourfully painted signboards, with green trees faded by layers of dust, with plainly-dressed middle-class people walking about, with kids playing on the street and retreating to the footpath when a vehicle passed, with partly rusted iron gates displaying a ‘No Parking Vehicle in Front of the Gate’ sign, with motorbikes, scooters and cars parked where space permitted. Bunny led us first to some shops, to buy groceries (from Kirana stores where you asked the storekeeper behind a counter for things you needed, instead of walking up aisles collecting items they wanted you to buy) and to pick up laundry (across the counter, at ‘Super Laundry’).

I remember little about the apartment. My vision is clouded by the list of titles on her large bookshelf I found myself scanning, without shame, in an obsessive manner and in ignorance of my host and Bips. Every now and then, when I pulled out a title from the shelf, Bunny would comment on the work and its author, and go on to recommend this or that related work in the same or related genre, by that author or another one. (If you detect a hint of exaggeration in this, set the thought aside. Her recent post about the challenges of organizing a large bookshelf speaks volumes on her appetite, curiosity and range.)

Chai and snacks were served. We discussed books and authors. Soon, too soon, it was time to leave. So the weekend ended the way it had begun, with a visit that captured the essence of this Mumbai trip: an appetiser, an experience that only scratched the surface and left me longing for more.

18 thoughts on “The Mumbai weekend

  1. Such riches here, in photographs and words and the feelings behind them! I’m glad to discover Bunny’s blog, too, as well as her bookshelf.

    Happy New Year.

  2. Great post. I never had the opportunity to see Mumbai through the lens of someone who had never visited it. You had a great guide; pointing out Chetan Bhagat’s residence notwithstanding 🙂

    1. What to do, Patrix, he refused to be taken to Shah Rukh’s bungalow and Amitabh’s bungalow and Salman’s building, I had to show him SOMEthing of Bombay’s Famous People’s Houses.


      1. Bunny, just as you’ve wondered if you look like “crystal vase person”, I’m beginning to wonder if I look like a person who’d take a detour to see Salman’s building. How could you even suggest it?!

    2. Thank you, Patrix. It looks like you would have ‘Desipundited’ this post, if the service was still functioning. I do miss such a directory.

      1. I definitely would have. I might just start a personal directory. The expectations that DesiPundit eventually built up just got too heavy.

    1. Don’t worry Rash, I forced him to look at it in passing when we walked out of Prithvi. Only Jalsa, not Prateeksha, but at least it’s a Bachchan bungalow.

  3. You had your eyes closed? Tch tch Parmanu, even if you aren’t an Amitabh’s bungalow and Salman’s house sort of a person, it’s a mandatory part of Mumbai’s charm ;-p
    In Bangalore? No celeb houses thank you. That is only reserved for Mumbai. And I don’t need to point out the Chinnaswamy stadium to you either, since you have lived in this city. We could do a food tour though. There are some lovely, laidback cafes.

  4. and you didnt let us pay at either crystal or cafe coffee……totally out of mumbai trip ethics!! 🙂
    bunny’s bookself is a dream…..anybody will be forgiven for losing control…hehe. btw…there are tons of crystal-like joints in the fort area filled with yummmmyy food. u gotta come back soon 🙂

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