Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Every Journey Gives Birth To A Story

"Always heartbreaking when you got to leave your city behind and all that you carry along is a bag full of memories."

I wrote the above lines as the train was about to chug off from Hubli railway station. I was heading back to Bangalore, which I term as my Karmabhoomi, for that’s where I work.

In the last couple of months my visits to Hubli have been more frequent. I end up spending a minimum of two days every month in the company of my parents in Hubli. It’s a tier two city as everyone terms it. So there is a huge gap between the socio-economic lifestyles of Bangalore and Hubli.

One part of the story is it does make me feel uncomfortable as lack of development in Hubli is very apparent.  The city by itself has always been the epicentre of not just socio-political events but happens to be a prime city for trade reasons too for northern Karnataka. The pain areas are very basic yet they are the most important ones. Basic infrastructure such as roads, drinking water and hygiene still remain a concern.

The other part of the story is that I’m attached to the very same city on multiple levels of emotions. I have lived in many cities and towns in the western and southern part of India. But I share a distinct relation with Hubli. I can identify some of the key milestones of my life with this city.

It’s not surprising that majority of my friends who are dear to me are largely from Hubli. It’s another matter altogether that almost all of them have migrated to bigger cities and a couple of them to different countries. And in today’s time and date they are quiet busy with their own lives and we hardly meet.

I chuckle as I can count on my fingers few of my friends from Hubli do reside in Bangalore too but we hardly make enough effort to reach out to each other. Spending quality time together is a rare occasion.

Ok it looks like I have drifted away from the point I was trying to make. The bottom line is despite its flaws cities like Hubli with which we share an emotional connect make us realise how different life has turned out to be as on date. Every visit makes me realise how much as a person I have changed.  It keeps bringing back the question have we ended up paying a price larger than it deserves by becoming advocates of metropolitan cities.

Who are we fooling? Are we not lying to ourselves and staying in denial mode. Look inside you, dig deep and you will connect with my thoughts. Smaller towns have played a formidable role in shaping us, our personalities. It taught us to be humble, caring, kind and be helpful to others in our growing up years. But as we graduated to metros, we forgot the smaller towns we came from and so was eroded the little good morals it had instilled in us.

As the train finally takes off, I look back one last time and kiss her goodbye. I know I will be back again next month. I will again feel nostalgic and feel helpless. Yes helpless, because I know I’m still too busy trying to make a living in a bigger city, running the rat race. A race which is endless until I decide it’s got to end.

Cheers and Peace ~ Vijay Shenoy A.K.A #GabbyVJ

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