‘ Up up show me the way, it’s a sun shiny day
take me away,
come take me away. ‘
“My alarm springs to life with these jingling beats from ‘The Trip’ that featured on Bindass. Sleepy, tied in my blankets, my warm bed calls me to slumber. Snoozing my alarm, I resume my dream of eating some luscious gulab jamuns. Just when I was about to pop in the 4th one there goes my alarm again.
Heaving out a loud cry; I climb out of the bed. I tiptoe myself to the basin in the hopes that mom won’t wake up. Closing the washroom doors halfway and turning the washroom lights on I struggle to turn my teeth to a sparkling diamond. TTTTrrrrriiinggg!!! There goes my mom’s alarm. I’m praying mom utters those magical words “I’m sleepy. Go and have food from outside”. Alas! A small and fat figure emerges from the darkness and my dream of eating junk food goes down the drain.
Still struggling to make my teeth white, mom switches the lights on and my home is ready to take on the day. She religiously prepares a health drink everyday in the hopes I would lose some pounds, which I do actually, but, I religiously make up for it, which is quite an another story (:p). I need to catch the 6:30 a.m. bus and it’s already 5:45 a.m. (NOTE: 15 minutes for brushing). It’s 6 am and I’m all dressed up and good to go. Despite my tantrums of getting late, AMMA (A/N: that’s what I call my mother) will see to it that I have something stuffed to my mouth. Munching chappatis I put on my sneakers, turn around and kiss my beautiful and chubby AMMA. In return she blesses me and makes a cross on my forehead (A/N: I’m a bit of a troublesome person, you know).
I step out into the chilling weather of early January, with darkness keeping me company amidst the chirping of birds. Shivering school kids await their school buses while I walk away to alight my own bus.
Few people out on the streets, mostly fitness freaks,
Dimly lit shops here and there, with their bustling routines,
Up in the night sky, the moon and stars glimmer away to their ever glory,
As I make brisk steps to the bus stop, with an intention to not miss the bus again.
It’s 6:25 am and I have almost reached. The newspaper lady smiles from her shop and hands over the The Indian Express to me as the red ST bus arrives in all its glory, making all the clumsy noises its metal parts can ever make. I climb in and make my way to the window seat. A sturdy woman conductor comes and I yell to her, “KAPURBAWADI, THANE” (A/N: if you don’t yell she won’t hear, trust me the bus makes that much noise). She scuttles for 55 rupees from her large pocket. Thanks to our PM Modi everyone has 500 and 2000 rupees notes and the poor lady has a difficult time providing change. I feel I’m in F1 racing car with the breeze tossing my hair upside down. With difficulty I put my scarf on and try closing the windows. Having reached NH8, the journey is very smooth with occasional noises made by the bus.
The day breaks in crowning the Sahyadri Mountains. Though I see it every day, it never fails to amaze me. I see 3 different colors of light yellow, pink and blue atop the lush green mountains, breaking up the mighty sky making itself a canvas painting that’s too priceless even for all the diamonds in the world. The bus has picked up speed and I really feel as if I have paid for a ride in a F1 racing car. It’s really cheap people! Just 45 rupees! No wonder the government tells us to opt for public transport. The lights inside the bus are turned off. With music turned on via my earphones, I glance to see passengers trying to cozy themselves to sleep while the conductor counts money in the dim light. However there are a few exceptional village folk who never wish to stay silent and blabber on. Just when I thought I would dip myself to sleep……….Behold! Here comes the traffic block on NH8. (A/N: BIG request to NHAI, for once show us that work can be completed on time, it’s been over 3 months now since the repairs have begun on Versova Bridge).
As we try whiling away our time, the usual chai walas come yelling “Chai pee lo, chai garam, garma garam chai”(Drink tea, hot tea, hot hot tea). Then, when we had enough of the chai sellers stalking us, up comes the peanut sellers and back and forth. The drivers alight, some do their early surya namaskar by stretching away, some chill by talking to their the newly made acquaintances, some are busy buying biscuits from the small tea shops nearby and so on.
Looking at them my hunger pangs are also activated and thanks to mom she has packed some juicy oranges, which I munch away. The NH8 now starts looking more of a picnic place now. On the other hand, some impatient drivers are busy making their way through the opposite end thus, creating more blocks for the drivers coming from Mumbai or Thane. After about a painstaking halt of 30 or 45 minutes (sometimes an hour or so), the barricades are pulled back and the mini-breakfast-fed people are now ready to overtake their acquaintances. VROOM VROOM !! WHOA! Buses, Cars, Trucks, Mini vans. etc zip zap and speed away towards Versova Bridge. Aboard my F1 bus as we speed away, the captivating beauty of Vasai creek mesmerizes us all. Tiny boats blobbing up and down the waters, on to hunt fish, birds swaying in the wind and the majestic hills towering the sky….. phew!!.
The bus has reached Hotel Fountain (the oldest landmark that sits between Ghodbunder Road and NH8). The bus halts at the bus stop. Passengers get in hurriedly to grab the best window seat and the door shuts with a THUD and we are back to racing. VROOMM…. zIP zAP..pOMP…pOMP goes my bus with ‘Udi Udi Jaye’ from SRK starrer “Raees” song being played on my phone. Hahaha..
The reason I call myself The Change Maker is because I believe in being the change. Even you can be the change as M.K. Gandhi quoted it, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” We come across so many problems. Every now and then we despise others for having suitably happier lives than others. I say why be sad for one thing when you can be happy doing thousands of other things. Why demand a vacation for yourself when all you can do is enjoy your daily doings just like my travel to college. They are far more beautiful than a holiday in Hawaii or shopping in Paris.
Observe smaller and simplistic things in life. Grab opportunities when presented to you. Lift yourself higher and try being beautiful from within. It’s a wonderful feeling!. Talk to strangers (A/N: trust me, it’s fun. Just use an alias and address and try to be a bit careful about your personal life). You get to learn a lot from them. Detach yourself from worldly aims. Aim at something that makes you happy and content and not rich. Lastly, but certainly not the least I would like to quote the words of my Spl. Angel, “Don’t worry at all, Just be happy.” ”
– The Change Maker
Feast your eyes on these images from my travel:
Here’s a complementary video to give you all a glimpse into the beauty that I am a witness to everyday:
“We, Amateurs, apologize for the delay, as we have been occupied with our personal lives’ engagements. So, we hope you enjoyed this.”