As a writer, one of my favorite pastimes is to imagine all the cities I’ve traveled to as human beings. To give them personality, jobs, cultures, and backgrounds. The reason why I do this is because that city starts to feel very familiar and friendly; when you imagine an entire concrete jungle as a human, you also get a lot of insight into how the city operates!
If I have to think of Pune as a human being, the city would most definitely be a writer. That, or an old colonel (but a writer is more fun and relatable). For the sake of this article, let’s give our city the “she” pronoun because a city is anyway referred as female in our local language.
She wakes up early but lazes around in bed for quite a while; contemplating her next move despite having a fixed schedule. Pune yawns and sits up in the bed and after realising the amount of activities she has to do during the day, boom, she jolts up and is now fully awake!
Our Pune is a quiet lady; she doesn’t speak much but knows a LOT. So much so that in fact she’s stopped believing in the concept of reading newspapers in the morning. Instead, she checks her social media first.
On Instagram, she likes a photo of scrambled eggs, bacon, and hash browns posted by a food blogger while eating her bowl of pohe. Absolutely savage. Deep down, she knows nothing comes close to pohe.
Just like she secretly likes Baner and Balewadi but because he’s from Karve Nagar, she has to be vocally regressive about those areas. She wears a fitbit on her wrist, uses expensive perfume for office, and tells herself that she doesn’t like change or anything modern.
At her workplace, she’s lazy but ridiculously intelligent. Her colleagues (surrounding cities) dislike her for getting away with working less, but secretly respect her nonetheless. She just works smart; you know? More brain, less brute force.
She has all the right jokes for the cafeteria table, her sarcasm unparalleled. It pisses off a lot of people but she makes up for it by offering them Chitale Bakarwadi from her tiffin; such a smooth operator. Here’s the best part though- because she’s so amazing and functional during the rest of the day, her boss allows her to take a nap from 1-4 pm. That’s her power nap and if she doesn’t get it, she gets irritable.
In the evening, she wants to do a lot after her work is done, but she’s tired. On her way back home, she’s silently cursing the developments, and the traffic. She can’t wait to retire, and she’s just 32.
At night, she’s found a new addiction- Netflix. She knows she has other things to do, but entertainment comes first. Also, there’s always the weekend. So on weekends, her conscience wakes up and she decides to do something constructive. So she heads out for a movie with friends, and mind you, after waking up really late and having an amazing breakfast of chaha and Hindustan Bakery Pattice. Simple pleasures, you see?
Sometimes, she calls her best friend, Mumbai, who she shares a love-hate relationship with, and decides to get in an argument which gets really personal. She decides to never see her again, but she knows that’s never going to happen.
You see, our Pune is a very ordinary and simple girl, well-dressed and well-spoken. She’s had an amazing college life and she misses it every time she’s thinking about things in the office elevator. She has strong feelings about the past, but she’s also eager to see where the future takes her. But until then, she’ll happily continue living her life while making others around her feel very, very jealous. Because there’s no one like her and there never will be.
Special note – Parmeet Kohli, thank you for the bank of gorgeous images.