January 18th, 2019

Happy 36th anniversary to us, Bombay meri Jaan

In January 1983, round about the 18th/19th/20th, I flew to what was then Bombay for the first time.

First time in India.

And it was love at first sight.

I repeat, love at first sight.

I hadn’t thought concretely about dates and anniversaries and such like until I landed in Mumbai last night. Driving into the city alone late at night, in a rattle-trap-y un A/C taxi, the way I had done all those years ago, and it all come back to me. The sounds, the buzz and – yes – the smell of Mumbai.

And it made me realise that yes, it is indeed 36 years, give or take, since I first saw this fabulous city, and so it’s nice to be back here to celebrate together. I’m running the marathon on Sunday, through streets that are oh-so-familiar, through areas that I know so well and that were home for many years.

I start the marathon by running past the office where I used to work, in 1983 and 1984; then on past the school my son attended.

Past the shop where we bought the cane furniture we still have in our Delhi home.

Past the building where we collected our (late) gorgeous English Setter, Erre, when he was just a wee, floppy-eared little puppy.

Past the turn off to our wonderful flat on Carmichael Road.

Past the building where I did play-date Mummy duties…

…and so it goes, an endless love affair with this city.

If it doesn’t sound weird, the thing that started this mega-trip-down-memory-lane was actually the smell of Mumbai last night.

There you go. Said it…

For years there was That Distinctive (and quite frankly disgusting) Bombay smell when you landed. People used to say you could smell the city from the air as you approached.

Then over the years, the smell seemed to dissipate, and I presumed it was all down to better sanitation or whatever. But last night…boy…won’t be too graphic, but I’m sure you get my point. My cabbie said it was due to the construction of the new coastal road, and who knows, perhaps he’s right, but whatever it was, it wasn’t nice, but it did trigger major memories, which was nice

So yes, Bombay meri jaan, happy anniversary to us 🙂

Be good to me this weekend…

1 comment to Happy 36th anniversary to us, Bombay meri Jaan

  • Myriam

    Hey Christine, so you worked in India, you felt in love, married and stayed there. Nice.
    I still hope to see you one day and do a little run together. I’m not as good as you are. ?
    For the moment it’s snowing in Belgium and to risky to run. That sucks.

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