When Teny pointed out this challenge to me, I had to participate in it and obviously I wouldn’t write about Cochin for quite a few reasons, first being the pathetic transport and traffic systems. Bangalore is no good either, but I was being chauffeured around. So I couldn’t care less.
Though the first time I had a chance to visit Bangalore was a few days ago, there was no way that I couldn’t fall in love with the place. It reminded me everything about my childhood, the city and the people and the crowd.
One of my dearest acquaintance, Ragu was the reason I decided to call on Bangalore. Now talking about Ragu, a malayali (Keralite) who drinks Rum like a fish and who can be seen in a lungi (dhoti) walking on 4 legs after getting drunk. I would leave Ragu for now and move on with Bangalore.
I say this is my first time in the city but not really. I had been here, during my college days. I was roaming around Marathahalli trying to find myself a football boots. I absolutely had no clue of the place but the people were understanding and helpful then. I had carried those memories along with me as I landed in Bengaluru International Airport.
Yes, this place has been a dream of every Keralite. We look upon Bangalore as a big A1 metropolitan city like Mumbai or New Delhi, though it was added to the list of A1 cities only in Sep 2007. Chennai is another superstar city in South India but I have never been there. I have heard from people that the climate is too hot, water is too salty and the birds don’t fly too high, things like that. I don’t believe all that, but just that I haven’t been there is a major barrier about me having a take on the city.
To talk about Bangalore in terms of drive, this city is driven by youngsters. By driven I do not mean driving a vehicle, but the spine of the city. I have never experienced such a young crowd in any city. I don’t think the average age of this city will be anything more than 32 years. Thanks to the big IT market that creates major chunk of employment in the city. I loved seeing the young around. I loved seeing couple’s holding hands, smiling, talking to each other as they walk by. It just makes me feel happy. There is love around and boy, isn’t that a heart warming sight?
Another thing I love about Bangalore is that there are a lot of Sports bike in this place. This is one place where the manufacturers come first with their products. Thanks to the young crowd driven by passion.
To talk about Bangalore in terms of design, this city is designed to accommodate people of all cultures. I was raised in Mumbai and once in my classroom our teacher asked each of us to stand up and say out their native place loud. Pretty much covered all the places from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, Kashmir being a beautiful girl class mate of mine. Again coming back to the point, like any other city Bangalore is designed to accommodate anyone and everyone. I am well versed with Tamil and Malayalam, but I have no clue about Kannada, Tulu and Telugu. Bangalore, though is basically a place which speaks Kannada (and Tulu), I have never had problems in communicating with people in Hindi, Malayalam and Tamil. I rarely speak in English in India, I leave that job usually to Ragu if I’m in Bangalore. The point being that I never had any problems in communicating with people. This city, though in the Southern part of India, you will find people understanding and speaking in Hindi. Hence I say it is designed to accommodate.
If we talk about city planning and city design, I must say it is as pathetic as any other city in India. Traffic is horrible. It takes 2 hrs to cover 8 kms and the IT hub of Bangalore, Whitefield has the worlds most worst traffic and worst roads ever. Hopefully someday it will get better.
To talk about what connects Bangalore, I must say Iron Maiden. I have seen them perform a lot in Bangalore. Apart from Iron Maiden, there are a lot of other things as well. There are palaces, monuments and things of art for the senior people and then there are places like pubs, discos and bars for younger people.
Then what is there for me?
Petrosexual people like me can always rejoice by meeting like minded automotive enthusiasts who own big bikes and even bigger cars. We can always go for a drive in their loud and fancy vehicle. Also there are quite a few garages, which install turbo chargers in a Honda Civic. I think that’s amazing. I fell in love with Civic long back and I still think it is pretty decent car for India and installing turbo chargers is an icing on the cake. That pretty much connects me to Bangalore (hoping that the engine won’t blow up any soon).
Bangalore is connected by proper network of roads to all the adjoining states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh. It is connected locally and globally via air route. There is one major and around ten minor ports that connect Bangalore to different parts of India and World via Sea. Karnataka has gained popularity because of the Konkan railways in terms of rail routes. Pretty impressive ehh… I would have loved to write so about Trivandrum (capital of Kerala) but by the time you reach the place, your soul would already on it’s way to heaven. Thanks to Quilon (Kollam) in between.
All said, I still can’t make peace and get over Mumbai. How can I not love Mumbai, which is my first home? Bangalore is only a recent one and I find the city attractive. So Bangalore, for now….you are the one. You are the great one for now, until Mumbai returns.
Do you guys have a favorite city? Why do you think that city is better than the one I have mentioned above?
I have used the older names instead of the recent version like Bangalore instead of Bengaluru. It’s just because I love those names more than the current ones. Not offending anyone, but a personal preference.