Over the last 3 weeks I have had the good fortune of spending one a piece in arguably the 3 most important cities of India-Mumbai, Delhi & Bangalore. All three have been the pillars of Indian economy over the last 50 years but beyond that, all three of them have a unique identity.
Mumbai, the city of dreams is a city which never sleeps. This was something I had just heard from people till I realised for myself when I visited Juhu beach at 2 am and found hundreds of people present there and enjoying the sea. Ofcourse the same thing has a downside, finding hundreds of people late at night means you will find thousands in the day. The city becomes a nightmare if you have to travel from one place to another between 7 in the morning and 10 in the night. You won't find place to drive your own vehicle and you won't find air to breathe in public transport. But then a walk at marine drive or sitting at the Bandra bandstand in the evening/night makes all the sufferings of the day worth it.
Dilwalon ki Dilli/Delhi has its own charm. Being a north indian myself, Delhi is much closer to my heart. A city which is the power centre of the country, a city which is of utmost historic importance to the nation is also a city where construction is an on going process which means dust and pollution make you sick. Delhi has that unique ability to look like the place to be and at the same time a place never to be at. Go to most of the localities in Old Delhi and you just want to get out but then driving through the Akbar roads of Delhi on a sunday morning is an experience in itself when one cant stop thinking-What do these ministers do in such big houses!
Moving down south to Bangalore was something I was circumspect about. I had never been into a southern indian city which worried me as to how I will cope up with the language barrier but Bangalore turned out to be a pleasant surprise. Bangalore seems like a bigger and a populous version of my own Chandigarh. A city which is undoubtedly the IT hub of the country has retained its Garden City status thorugh the years.Bangalore is a place where you can still breathe fresh air, something that is not very common these days. The rains and windy weather have been a fresh change after experiencing the heat in Delhi and Mumbai. Banglore has its own negatives ofcourse-the auto-wallahs are ready to drain your pockets the moment they realise you are not a local and would ask for money that would shock even a Dilli-wallah. Bangalore has its own traffic problems wherein you will be stuck in a jam and you won't move for a good 15 minutes unlike the traffic jams of a Delhi or a Mumbai where you keep crawling.Besides this, I don't have much to complain about this city as of now though spending more time might bring out a few more things to lament about.
So all you have to do to have a good time in any of these cities or for that matter any place in the world is to mend according to it because there was a reason when St. Ambrose said "When in Rome, do as the romans do."