Pune is the Sohail Khan of cities. There’s loads of money in hand (*cough* IT Park *cough*). A few big bhaus that you can count on in case of calamities. Beautiful women around. But still, there’s something missing. It’s been 4 years since I’ve been living in this city. Having noticed just too many things, there are a few wishes I have for this metropolis that I pray come true before I succumb to death. In my opinion, it takes just the following to turn Pune into the city of dreams:
1. Vaishali will finally start accepting credit/debit cards.
Dear Vaishali, you’re 35 years old. Your Mysore Cheese Masala Dosa has risen from Rs. 35/- to Rs. 120/- (Is it more now? I haven’t been there for quite some time, and the prices at Vaishali soar faster than the prices of petrol). In a world where even subziwalas keep card swiping machines, how hard is it for you to keep one? And what’s with all the waiting, no matter what hour of the day I decide to visit? Build an extra storey, for god’s sake! I love your food. But when I’m hungry like a wolf, waiting for 50 minutes only to sit on a Nilkamal chair is like buying a ticket to see Katrina Kaif and ending up seeing Neetu Chandra. If Nilkamal chairs is the best you can offer after charging 120/- for a dosa, I’d rather sit at home (on MY Nilkamal chair).
2. Audi and BMW owners will finally learn to drive.
Look, I understand your forefathers left you a fortune. You bought an Audi/BMW/Jag/any-other-car-I’d-sell-my-soul-for – wise, very wise. You chanted all sorts of bhajans in front of it to ward off the evil eye. So, why make others chant Bangladeshi curses on you as you take it out on the road? Seriously, Y U NO learn to drive? I’m no owner of a driving school. But when you honk at me in urgency as if your maushi is in the hospital and then, fail to overtake me in your oh-so-cool sedan, you have no idea how much I remember your mothers and sisters. I’m pretty sure the “L” on your car doesn’t stand for “Learning”.
Forget Starline buses. At peak hours, our buses look like a jug of water with water spilling everywhere. Hit a bump and you’ll see 2-3 poor travellers down to the ground.
3. Pune will finally have better public transport.
Between the autowallahs and humanity, don’t know which I despise more. I’d rather take an off from work than take an auto to go to work. Every autowallah seems to me like a death-eater (a reference from Harry Potter, if you’re unaware *rolls eyes*). For what I’ve often paid for going from Pimple Saudagar to Kharadi, I’d have reached Mumbai twice. Alas, I had to take a bus. I, however, overheard that the government of Pune was to assign 200 new buses for the sake of public transport. Forget Starline buses. At peak hours, our buses look like a jug of water with water spilling everywhere. Hit a bump and you’ll see 2-3 poor travellers down to the ground. So, why wouldn’t every second resident in this city end up buying a Honda or Hyundai and add to the already bloating traffic?
4. Flat owners will finally be happy with bachelors as tenants.
Not every Haryanwi owns a pistol. Not every Delhi girl is a tramp. Not every tenant is going to rape your flat. But why take chances? Isn’t it better to have a family of three as tenants where the kid draws all sorts of monuments on the walls, than to have two girls residing in your flat peacefully and maturely? No. We girls are here in Pune only to live-in with our boyfriends and get drunk every night. So much so, that the hare-brained aunty living in the neighbouring flat won’t even help us out with the paperwala and cablewala’s number. Well, good luck when your son Monu is unable to plug in his PS3 and you’re too coy (read: arrogant) to even knock at my doorstep for help.
And since everything in this city is so expensive (I recently ate Tadka Dal at a road-side dhaba in Pimple Gurav for 120 bucks), it is obvious that you need to beg for a better pay cheque from your boss. Well, dream on! At least, dreaming is free of cost here.