Thursday, December 23

Nostalgia – My First Trip to Juhu

I guess you have been waiting for long for this particular post to appear – Hima George.  To introduce you to other readers – She is my younger sister by Rakhi, yes she used to tie Rakhi to me in college. She has been one of the most innocent people I have come across in my life.

My first couple of months in Mumbai was rather adventurous, as I was new to the place and a little scared of venturing out after coming from Delhi. I got to understand Mumbai and its safety as I started to venture out to places, sometimes alone or with my cousin. Later, my cousin left me to roam around the city alone so that I get a hang of the place.

By the time I had joined college, it was almost a month of me staying in the city and I had been to most of the places and also I had a couple of friends who I could go with. However, Juhu was one place where I had not been and I wanted to see a beach. So, I and Hima decided to go to Juhu after our shopping spree in Bandra. Hima said that she was well acquainted with the place as she frequented Mumbai due to her relatives.

We reached Banrda and by the time we were done with our shopping, it had started to pour, but we were hell bent on going to Juhu. We took an auto to Juhu, reached, went into the sea, soaked ourselves, and did almost everything one can do to enjoy themselves. The real adventure was yet to come. We started roaming around the beach to figure out the way to get back on the main road.

Hima told me that there is walkable shortcut to Santa Cruz bus depot from where we can get a direct bus for Navi Mumbai. So, we started walking to find that shortcut. We almost walked for quarter to an hour to reach a Ganv, where we were the only two girls fully clothed. It was sort a red light area and people were staring at us as if they would eat us alive. I got very scared and asked Hima whether we are on the correct track. She looked at me and burst out crying.

Two teen girls had lost their way and were stuck in a hooker’s zone with men all around staring strangely. We scared to ask direction to anyone as we thought they might mislead us, so I asked Hima to calm down and continue walking. I would praise about myself that my sense of directions was brilliant and I never used to forget my way even if I have went through it only once. So we walked around that area for one hour drenched to the core and in midst of finding a dead end, walking around same street twice because of that, finding women in the most outrageous of outfits, bearing glares of both sexes, and what not.

Finally, in we could see a tall building just behind the wall of a house on that area. I was keeping my fingers crossed that God please there be a direct road to reach that building and lo we were there. I could not believe that we were again on the main road where there was life surging and people were humane. I was unable to bear the contrast of the two places separated just by a small street and not even a wall. I could not bear the overwhelming chocking feeling of coming back to safety from such a dreadful place that I sat down on the road.

I was crying; however, it was raining so much that none noticed that. Seeing me sit on the road, a sardar taxiwala stopped by to ask Hima if I was unwell and needed to reach somewhere. I stood up, still scared to ask for help, but then I realized that this is the real Mumbai where people really help you if they feel you are in some sort of trouble. I asked him, where were we and he understood that we were lost in that particular area. He asked us where we had to go and he finally dropped us to Santa Cruz depot.

We had walked over 13 kilometers in that daze and were shaken so much that I don’t still remember our conversation after we got into the bus. That was the first and the last time I was scared in Mumbai.

With Hima, I have much more interesting incidents which will have to wait for some more days. Miss you darling, a lot.