As I alight on the Churchgate station for a new day at work, I take a right instead of the subway. I have been doing this since the last few days. The road from the station to my office goes through the business district with building around.
The route from the right is longer but takes me along the sea. While coming to office, one station prior to my destination, I look out of the window to find a cloudy sky over a somewhat raging ocean. The weather seems pleasant than the usual humid Mumbai climate.
I walk toward the sea from the station. The shops don’t open that early and the road is much quite at this side of the town. The bustling business district is just maybe a kilometer away. The Buildings at the side of the road still have the old world charm. They have not been taken over by builders who build ugly glass building called offices with limited colours like blue and grey.
I cross the Hotel Ambassador. Everybody tells me that there was a revolving restaurant at the top of the building. I am not so sure of the rumors. A quick search on the Internet reveals that there indeed a revolving restaurant offering a breathtaking view of the Queen’s Neck;lace called the "Pearl of the Orient".
On the left is the renamed "Pizza by the Bay" It was earlier known as "Jazz by the Bay" where live jazz was performed by upcoming artist every night. I am not sure Jazz is still played there. Mumbai is a fast city. The concept of sitting relaxed eating and listening to music is probably alien to the metropolis.
These buildings were built when Mumbai was just starting to grow into a metropolis. When it did not matter if it was called Mumbai, Bombay or Bambai. Debatable issues which I have no wish to fall into.
I cross the road they to reach the Marine drive promenade. The sea beyond the walls is not as raging as I imagined it to be but still the waves splash the wall with little fury. People on the promenade are a relaxed lot. No office rushing people here.
I want to sit there and enjoy the sea and its breeze. Amu and I would sit here in the evening before marriage. We haven’t come here in a long time. Maybe we should again and maybe on a morning. The mornings are much quieter here. The occasional joggers with the whole music and pedometer and all that fancy gadgets and shoes and the whole attire.
The health conscious wear shoes. I see a middle-aged man with bright green t-shirt and brighter green shoes. Thankfully he is not wearing any green shorts. Another jogger lady experiments with bright blue pair of shoes. Another jogger ahead is comfortable with mellowed down blue shoes.
A middle aged woman in salwar tries to run through her weight. An aged man walks with a brisk pace. They all try their own version of something called exercise. A man in fifties is making a strange gesture of clutching his both hands and making a movement as calling everybody to him. A closer look reveals that it his his version of exercise.
The young couples facing the sea oblivious of the surrounding. There is more privacy in the morning. A girl in a burkha comes along with her boyfriend. Love still find a way in a conservative society.
Then there are those loners who sit by themselves watching the sea. And there are the college kids who come in dozen admiring the early morning sea and sky.
Servants of affluent families are there to walk the dogs. I think walking with the dog is the best way to connecting with your pet. I guess a dog has become more of a status symbol now.
A boat with two fisherman wobbles in the sea. Early morning catch it seems.
As I turn toward my office, the clouds are just clearing up. The sun shines through the clouds and the first bead of sweat breaks from my forehead. An indication of the day to come? Maybe!
An extra 10 minutes than my normal way but mind recharged for the day!