Coming back to Kolkata after a year is one of the last things any bong wants to do. Because given a choice – he would never leave the city in the first place. But then again, that was like a decade ago. Now things have changed, and so have the bong sentiments. Being away from your first love perhaps makes you appreciate it more is what we go by nowadays. So, as I touched down on the tarmac, I couldn’t help but feel that growing sense of excitement in my heart of experiencing my dear city all over again. Like Arnold, I wanted to blurt out, “I am Back!”
I had expected very few changes in the city severely allergic to changes. There were none. Except for the blues now being more on your face (despite Messi fans being badly messed up right now), nothing had changed. A tad unfortunate- specially after seeing the kind of things happening in places like Ahmedabad, which after all had started off as a tier 2 city. I would have very much liked to see certain things in place that would make my pride even more inflated (or rather give me a reason in the present to be proud of. Outside the state we bongs are often blamed for gloating only about things which have happened, well, much before I was born actually).
Anyway, I guess it was no use lamenting on what could have been. Given the fact I was here for a few days only, I wanted to soak in as much as I could, so that I could repeat Wordsworth’s much cliched lines in my next few posts again and again- “a thing of beauty bla bla bla”….. so instead of painstakingly facing the reality that nothing much was expected to happen here, I started making a list of what I would do in coming days.
- Have bhar-er cha from every nook and corner shop on the street that I would pass on foot. Yes, that’s the one thing I have badly missed this one year. Tea, no matter how horribly made, tastes best when served in that earthen cup. That “ah” I utter after the first sip obviously comes straight from my stomach.
- Gorge on kochuris. And I mean the ones that closely resemble a bong’s Sunday staple – luchi. The one you have with potatoes- and not the ones that come pre-filled with God knows what. That brown shit tastes, like shit.
- Jalebi. Ok that’s available outside the city too- but Kolkata jalebi or jilipi as we bongs fondly call it, has a taste and shape very intrinsic to the simple nature of us folks.
- Have a walk down Southern avenue and the Rabindra Sarovar lake (just to prove there’s things I love to do in Kolkata other than eat, and partly to digest nos. 1-3)
- Take a long patient walk down the footpaths of Gariahat. To give wifey some company- while she attends to the essential business of haggling with storekeepers.
- Sit down at Bye-loom to have mangser chop. Yes, we are bongs. We love food, we just can’t do without it for long. The recent meat scam be damned.
- Indulge in heated discussions about our elder sister and the things she has been up to off late.
- Football- oops! That’s a strict no-no. Now that Argentina, Brazil and Germany have been shown the door rather unceremoniously in the recently concluded cup, no legitimate son of Bengal talks of football anymore.
- Yes finally, after all the hard day’s work, I get to sleep till noon tomorrow. To be woken up only by
- The smell of Hilsa and khichudi. Its monsoons! The hole it rips in my pocket? Worth every dime.
Archya, is a doctor-turned-healthcare administrator, who thinks he has a passion for writing, and hence uses his limited idle time to pen down his thoughts. No publishing house has yet made him any offers, so he has to now debate his opportunity costs.
For his articles on the Official student blog of PGPX, IIM Ahmedabad, Click here