PROLOGUE: Mumbai Local – Stories From The Lifeline Of Mumbai. A series of short stories that explores the life of a citizen in a local train. Stories, about relationships, about culture and about the undying spirit of the people, just like the lifeline of Mumbai itself. Some real, some experiences, some fictional and many mere an observation. The many a faces, that seem strangers, draw me close to them. Some ambitious minds, some deceived, some real, some fake. Some young, some old, some hot, some cold like stone. I am one among them, and that’s what draws me more close to them. That’s what draws me towards their face, because every face has a story to tell.
Those weird glances, those lusty stares and those creepy smiles truly must have made her feel that she has committed a grave mistake, a sin that is unforgivable. But she was hapless. New to the city, no time to walk-in to the adjacent ladies compartment, lost in a chaotic morning rush of moron-like people rushing to catch the trains as if there is no tomorrow, she hurriedly boarded the train just as it was leaving the platform. “Ek second aur der karti, toh gir jaati”, said a passenger giving a stunned expression. She was courteous enough to lend back a smile. “Kya karoon, itni bheed hogi andaza nahi tha. Ab aadat daalni padegi”, she said as sweat trickled down her face. “Where do you need to get down madam?” asked a young man, probably in his early twenties, single and most certainly chatting with his girlfriend on WhatsApp. “KURLA”, she said. Four stations on, it was time for the penultimate challenge. Kurla had arrived. As more passengers jostled their bulging tummies to get inside, not allowing other passengers to get down, the young woman managed to wade her way through the exit. Meanwhile, the man who tried to indulge in sweet-talks with the lady realised that something was amiss. Oh damn! His expensive iPhone 6 was not in his hand. He panicked, shudder at the thought of losing a part of his life. He checked his trouser pocket but to no avail. As he walked by, an old man patted his back and asked him to look towards the bridge and pointed to someone calling out to him. The man looked and found that the lady in the train waived him with his iPhone, and she soon disappeared into the crowd. She was the PERFECT CONWOMAN!