The Bombay Diaries: A Friend Indeed



I grudgingly left Bombay after spending 7 beautiful years there. And needless to say, I developed some of the most important relationships in Bombay. When college started at the age of 18, a whole bunch of clueless faces were spotted across campus. Since most of us weren’t ‘localites’ *how I hate that word*, we all knew that we’d have to be extra social so as not to be confused sheep in the big city. Having spent all my life in the same school and growing up with the same friends, I was a bit cautious in my early days at college. (When I talk to some of my closest friends now, they said I was quite a snob…oops!)

One incident that is really etched in my mind happened to be with one of my best friends. She’s getting married in three weeks and I can’t begin to imagine what life will be when I won’t have her leg to pull. When I was introduced to Ruchika for the first time, she came across as one of the most college-enthusiastic people ever. She enjoyed assignments a bit too much, would purposely hang around seniors to get pulled into ‘interaction’ (read: ragging) sessions and had about three different colours on her hair. This one, I’ll stay away from, I thought to myself.

Best Friend“Hi! I’m Ruchika. I’m in section C. What’s your number?” were the first words she said to me. I was a bit surprised at her straight forward nature and being the brat that I was, I told her that we didn’t know each other so why would I give my number to her?! Now, for the first six months or so, the two of us didn’t really bother much with each other. But she was really good friends with my really good friend and our really good friend wanted us to be really good friends. And so it was. I love to trouble her and she is so close to my heart today that I will fight with her husband-to-be and keep her all to myself!

Bombay can make it really easy to make friends and even easier to lose them. On an average day, one probably interacts with at least 10 people. And unless you choose to live in a cloister, it is impossible not to get chatty with these folks every now and then. But the trick lies in maintaining these bonds. I’m quite a hyper-social being. I bump into someone or the other wherever I go. With work and travel, it can be a bit tiresome to make plans very often. You often stick to people who live around as it’s convenient so all your Facebook albums usually have the same faces. Here’s how you can break the routine and get by with the help of some friends:

• Try and be active on social media sites. These help staying updated about the doings/ undoings in your friends lives.
• Pick an activity and make it yours. For example, I love karaoke. So as often as possible or at least once a month, pick a fun activity. Or hit ‘ladies night’ with your girlfriends.
• Don’t get too worked up if someone cancels. Cut them some slack. Maybe they had some other pressing matter to look after.
• Some people say, “I want to have a few close friends, not a bunch of superficial friends” But that can’t be true. There are all kinds of friends. We all have intimate friends, casual friends, work friends (whom we seldom see outside of work). Then there are childhood friends whom we see only once in many years.
• Accept that no two people are the same and you will argue and disagree.
• Social obligations aren’t always bad. Go to that party, attend that wedding, show up at whatever occasion possible.

And remember, its a two way street. You can’t be the only one making the effort. If it doesn’t flow naturally, you’re probably better off being acquaintances. The trick is to catch up where you left off because in a city like Bombay, it can be very, very tough to be in constant touch with everyone.

I’ve reached that point in the story where I should stop but don’t know an appropriate way to do so. I’d love to hear a story or from you too so feel free to comment or mail. Until next time, cheerio!

Post By Mehak Rampal (7 Posts)

Not connected to namesake actor but loves to hate on things. Cannot tolerate ppl hu typ lyk dis. Caramel lover and wholehearted foodie. Shopaholic on most days. Loves surprises and would take a Thesaurus to bed.


Mehak Rampal

Mehak Rampal
Not connected to namesake actor but loves to hate on things. Cannot tolerate ppl hu typ lyk dis. Caramel lover and wholehearted foodie. Shopaholic on most days. Loves surprises and would take a Thesaurus to bed.