"The thing about Mumbai is you go five yards and all of human existence is revealed. It's an incredible cavalcade of life, and I love that."- Julia Sands
My college is just 15-20 minutes' walk away from my flat which means I walk to college. The best part about Mumbai so far is that I can walk home after dinner in college dining hall at 9:30 in the night alone and without fear. Whereas in Delhi this would have been an hour of dread for a woman without a male companion, it's nothing out of the ordinary here. Whereas in-time there was 7:30 or maximum 8 p.m. (and 10 p.m. in the lenient hostels), here one can walk home at 12 in the night without a thumping heart or go for chai with friends at 3 in the night.
Alright I can see that I have been comparing Delhi and Mumbai, which isn't fair as it's been just a week here. There are many things here that I can appreciate without necessarily comparing those to Delhi, say, the street food. I have tasted almost everything that is common in Mumbai and have loved every single bite except for the fact that there is bread in almost every item :D The pav bhaji I had in Juhu Chaupatti was out of the world totally and I am still in awe of how surprisingly inexpensive street food here is. The one necessity of life that is however unfortunately pretty expensive is parlour charges. To get threading done, I have to shell out double what I have so far in life over and above the fact that the beauty parlour right opposite our main campus offers special discount to TISS students! Getting to hear Hindi generously sprinkled with Marathi words in the morning, thanks to our always smiling maid aunty, is another thing that amuses me. The tapori way of speaking (say, humko jane ka hai) always reminds me of Bollywood movies and it feels a little uncomfortable that I can make out absolutely nothing when I hear Marathi.
Another good thing for me here is inexpensive public transport. The autowallahs here have already impressed me with their honesty as every one works according to meter (not to be expected in Delhi) and here I go in comparison mode again, which I guess I can't help. By the way, they call you back to return a rupee if you paid Rs. 20 and the meter shows a rupee less. They rarely refuse to take you to some place though I confess that I had to roam around for 15-20 minutes in rain, in vain, asking autowallahs to take me to my place three days back (turned out that I was in the wrong direction and due to the rain and traffic nobody could perhaps wait to tell me that). I maybe a little biased towards Mumbai, thanks to my first visit here two months back and thanks to TISS, but my instinct tells me this love affair is going to be as good, if not better, as the one I had with Delhi :)