July 14, 2013

Dear Mr. Mali,

First of all the promised apology.

I realize to a Mumbai-boy, the post I wrote may not appear to flatter the city. Frankly, I'm not sure if flattery was what I had in mind, but whatever else the intent was, it was not to denigrate your city. And yes, I agree with you that 'Pakistani-Princess' hardly has the right to talk about poverty in Mumbai as if I come from the sterilized-streets-of-Sweden (are streets in Sweden sterilized, I wonder?). So for all the mean-ness that you perceive, my apologies.

The truth is, I fell in love with your city. With its warmth, its generosity, it's openness, and its spirit. And I fell in love with its people - for much the same reason. The city also overwhelmed me though. Honestly, it is somewhat scary  - so many people, living in all sorts of conditions, but happy despite it. For me, everything was an adventure. From crossing the street to eating all kinds of street-food.There is a strange sort of fascination, for example, that I now have with paani-puri, and the bhaiyya-with-his-pots-and-pans serving one delicious concoction after another.

But I digress. Point is, my intention was not to insult. It was to describe a wonderfully different, somewhat awe-inspiring, and ultimately magical reality. I agree, the written word may not have supported that intention. And for that I owe Mumbai (not you) a better blog-post-tribute. And soon.

Now stop scolding me.

Even the insensitive have (some) sensibilities.

Much love,

Me.

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