Born Mumbaikar, Raised in Hyderabad, Kolkatian by Heart
December 1, 2018
I forgot to introduce myself in my first post. That’s something I’ve been doing almost every day since I’ve left my previous company and honestly it has bored me to the core and wanted to take a break from it. Moreover, I find my introduction quite funny because of relocating between three different cities. But wherever I’ve stayed. Baba ek baat hamesha bolte the.. “Duniya ghoom k aagaye.. Kolkata waali baat kahi nahi hai.” and I can see why he said so. There’s a reason why they call it the City of Joy.
Alright! so my introduction goes like, “Hello Everyone! My name is Faiz. I was Born in Mumbai, Raised in Hyderabad then finally settled at Kolkata.”
“Which place do you like the most?”
“What do you call yourself? A Mumbaikar, Hyderabadi or Bengali?”
These are the questions I usually come across every time I’m done with my introduction and without a second thought I say “Kolkata! I’m a Bong!”
Seven years of my life, I’ve stayed at Mumbai and then for sixteen years I’ve stayed at Hyderabad. I relocated to Kolkata only in 2014 and within these 4 years of my stay I call myself a Bengali/Kolkatian. Why is that so?? Quite a simple answer but ektu long.
Kolkata has taught me how its ok to be imperfect. It has helped me discover beauty beyond flaws. How? I’ll explain…
It’s quite ok to have a bhuri because food is important and you’re girlfriend is still gonna love you after you get fat. Khaana bhi hamesha bhook k waje se nahi.. Kabhi kabhi chaske k waje se bhi khaya jata hai. Ye yahi aake pata chala. Kolkata has taught me the importance of History and its Preservance.
It’s the only place where you can stop a random person for a quick chat and that person will still give you a homely feeling. Kisi se rasta puchlo to manzil tak chorke ayenge. You never get to know when your friends and colleagues become your family. I’ve had loads and loads of Sewayi on Eid and Bakrid lekin Durga Puja yahi aake manaya hai. “Mod khescho?” bolne waala manager pehli baar mila and its quite fun when he says that. Khud ki Gaadi mei manager ko aate hue bohot dekha hai lekin Swag mei Bullet pe aane waale Bhaiya yahi mile. Chai aur sutta peene ka jo maza hai wo yaha aake pata chala hai. Dost ko Dost nai.. Bhai yaha aake maana hai. Saale ko kamina bolu ya BC, usse ghanta farak nai padta. Behen ko Guddi yaha aake bola hai.
Unlike the previous cities where I have stayed, I found Kolkata accepting me the way I was. I did not had to carry a look or fake accent to be a part of people around me. Yes I have made mistakes too.. Choti moti nai.. Badi waali.. Bohot badi waali bhi.. Still I found the city accepting my flaws. Jaise ki dheere se bolra ho ke “Bete! Kharabi sirf tere mei nahi.. Mere mei bhi hai. Hum sab mei hai. Fikar matt kar.. Mitti daal aur aage badh.. Mai hoo tere saat.. Aage bhi rahunga.”
When I left for Kolkata in 2014, I had no aim. I didn’t know what to do with my life. Now that I had left Kolkata again, I only have one aim and that is to be so efficient that atleast I won’t have to leave the city again and get back home as quick as possible.
Still didn’t understand why I call myself a Bengali? Quite a simple answer..
“Mera Janam Mumbai mei hua hai. Mai raha hu Hyderabad mei. Lekin mujhe Zindagi di hai Kolkata ne.”
And someone famous has said.. “Home is where the Heart is.”