Saturday, January 10, 2009

Romancing Mumbai

As I started to get nostalgic about leaving Mumbai I spent the last 2 weekends getting around to doing things on my “10 things to do in Mumbai” list. Although I could not manage all of them, I did manage a fair bit and needless to say feel extremely glad about the same.

1) Evening at Haji Ali followed by dinner at Gallops
The extremely popular Dargah in the midst of the ocean is a very popular tourist destination and though I have been in Mumbai many a time earlier and passed by Haji Ali too but never managed to go to the Dargah until this time around. Amidst the heavy traffic on a fairly sultry Saturday evening , I decided to get down mid way from the cab and started to walk . With the path to the Dargah filled with people selling everything from Chadars to flowers and so much more, I experienced a weird feeling as I walked towards any Dargah for the first time in my life. The place was much smaller than I had expected , quaint and noisy yet peaceful. After getting my blessings I even tied a thread and made a wish and not forget enjoy the tranquility. I had heard that the it is always better to vist the Dargah in the evenings as it is well lit up and it indeed lived up to its expectation. After coming back I even made the ceremonial visit to Haji Ali Juice center. The day ended with our last dinner at Gallops (one restaurant I had been wanting to visit in quite some time) The view of the race course and the meetha pan at the end was an icing on the cake.

2) Shopping at Crawford Market
This place couldn’t have been more crowded than it was on that sat evening or so I would like to believe but my fetish for leather bags gave me the much needed impetus to shop at crawford. After having tried my luck at every possible bag shop I finally found a bag to my liking and the one hour of ordeal ended in a moment of satisfaction. This was followed by the ceremonial visit to Badshah. Everyone who has been to Crawford knows of this place and the you cannot miss a snack at Badshah while you are here.

3) Watching a play at NCPA
Ever since I came to Mumbai, I had this desire to go and watch a play. I never managed to find company to go with me but this time around things got different . I instinctively decided to book tickets online and luckily at the vague hour in the morning Sudhir agreed to join in. So Chaos theory on Saturday evening followed by a walk along the Queen’s necklace and not to mention an ordeal to find a place on Sat evening to eat.

4) A walk around South Bombay
This is something everyone has to experience. You could start at VT station and admire the architecture of the municipality building and walk down towards Churchate and pass by Flora fountain. Causeway is something you wouldn’t miss and more so pastries at Theo Broma. The pound cake is out of the world !!! I ended my jaunt at Gateway and needless to say the whole experience was extremely fulfilling.

5) Bandra and more
As I decided to meet one of my friend’s on a Sunday evening at Bandra, we decided to grab a bite at Bascillco. This was followed by shopping at Irla market and for the ignorant ones this place is a bounty for the shopaholic women. Back to Bandra for more street shopping followed by eating Corn and enjoying the evening on Band Stand.

There are a gazillion things a gourmand wouldn’t miss like satiating their appetite with Aaram Vada Pav, Pav Bhaji at Sardar in Tardeo or Chinese at Five Spice. So much to do from walking around Herra Panna (to see what lengths women can to buy imitations of Fendi, Gucci and Calvin Klein.) , roaming around in Atria ( I owe this one to Shefali completely :P ) but something I would truly miss would probably be Worli Sea Face. Be it rain or heat day or night I spent so much time walking/ sitting on the benches there and pondering about life.

After roaming around in London alone many a time, I decided that the best thing one can do living in any city is to experience the sights and sounds of that city (and sometimes it gets better without a company ) Be it eateries, shopping or generally wandering around, there is soo much that every place has to offer. There is so much more that I wanted to do in Mumbai like going to Borivalli National Park , seeing the Prince Wales Museum and going to Elephanta but I know for sure that I would go back to Mumbai at some point in time later. So all of this and more reserved for then :)

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