“What a match? Yesterday was fun”. Okay, It is safe and better for humanity if I stop talking about cricket. Let me continue writing what I left incomplete yesterday. Although I have only 20 minutes to write this blog but I will try to complete it today.
My city is the one which gives me my space as well as considers me part of it. I am a Bengali. No doubt I have my Bengali circle, association and I celebrate Bengali festivals with my Bengali friends. Despite that, I never felt I am an outsider or nobody made me feel that I am an outsider. This city allows me to enjoy my space. When a culture is great by itself, there is no need to advertise and drag people towards it. Outsiders will come in to it without any efforts. The same happened to me as well. I can not stop participating in Navratri, Uttarayan and many other colorful festivals that are celebrated here. Then you tell me why should I not love this city.
The night before Uttarayan, I went with my wife and two kids to Old padra road to buy some kites.Then after Diwalipura Circle I had no way to ride my bike as there were hundreds of people walking on the road, buying stuffs and eat on the roadside stalls. I parked my bike and we all started walking on the street. After sometime, my daughter was tired so I made her sit on my shoulder and continues walk. I was walking, finding my way among hundreds of people. I felt the same as I had experienced when I was a kid, and my father took me on his shoulder to a famous fair called ‘Vyasa Sarovar Mela’ when we were living in Jajpur. This is nothing new, anybody would have experienced this in their childhood. What is special about this is, the street which is one of the major streets of Vadodara during the day, suddenly converted to a mela site in the evening. I need not take my kids to some far away place to show what a mela looks like. I loved that street and the city more than ever.
In the year 2004, my friend gifted me one electric FM Radio plus alarm clock when I was in another city. That did not have any provision to use batteries. I loved that so much but I could never use it because of frequent power cuts, every power cut used to reset the time in my alarm clock to 00:00. So every time after power cut I had to manually set correct time. Then finally I stopped using it. After coming to Vadodara I found my electrical instruments can be used when I need, not at electric departments mercy. Even if there is a power cut, I have a toll-free number which I can call to get it fixed in couple of minutes. The most surprising and impressive part is, the person who answers your call is more professional and customer focused than many private call centers. I can not stop loving this city.
I used to go to office at 9:00 AM and come back home at 11:00 PM earlier. Not because I was working for 12 hours at office. I was spending several hours cutting through the city traffic. After coming to Vadodara I spend a lot more time at home than I used to earlier. I could see my kids grow everyday and play with them every evening after coming back from office. The most interesting part is I could come home for lunch. This is not because I stay close to office, but because the traffic is thin in this city and city’s radius is smaller than any other cities Major cities. I can plan for a movie or shopping and reach destination in 15 minutes time. In any other cities I have to plan from morning or previous day for a movie. So, I get lots of family time here. It’s not only me, if you notice this entire city values family a lot. You can see many families going out for dinner or movie during weekdays after work. After living here I realized that I earn so that I can enjoy with my family. Isn’t it a beautiful reason to love this city?
When I came here first I thought life is all about process and procedures. You can get best out of everything by following defines processes. But after living here for 4 years I realized works are done better by personal relationships. Some may disagree with me but experience it once you will understand what I mean. Here EQ plays a greater role than IQ. Here human values and emotions play a greater role that rules.I gradually understood this and I am loving it now.
I love museums, cultural heritages, traditional music and anything that are deep rooted. This city gives me opportunity to enjoy these. Shouldn’t this be a reason to love this city?
People from other cities may think it is a small city but the fact is, this city has everything that you need. Every facility that you can find in any other major city is available here and on top of that you get many things here which you can not find in any other city.
I proudly say I belong to this city and this city is mine. Somebody said “You give me a piece of gold, I will spend it. You give me fistful sand and tell me it is mine, I will transform it to gold”. My love for this city is not due to technical reasons which I will evaluate time to time, it is because of these small emotional reasons, which I will cherish for ever.
Love you Vadodara