It was election season, I was in Bandra. Ergo, there was an article.
At coffee shops, colleges, high-rises; among giggling teens and loitering auto-drivers; at posh dinner parties and hipster nightspots in this leafy, lazy suburb; once predominantly Catholic, once lined with hidden bungalows, now an oasis for show business, with glass penthouses housing creative professions, there was Election Buzz. A confused buzz but a buzz nevertheless. At a local seafood restaurant, I impolitely eavesdropped. A well-known theatre actor and Bandra resident complained, “I like Mayawati because of what she’s done for the homeless or Naxals or whatever, but how will she pick wine for a state dinner with Nicolas Sarkozy?” He added, “Nowadays, English is everything, boss. Even in politics.” His VJ-turned-model friend chimed in, “I personally feel Dr Manmohan Singh is THE Dr Manmohan Singh, not any Manmohan Singh, so we should support him, ok?.” Winston Churchill once said that “the best argument against democracy was a five-minute conversation with an actual voter”. Nowhere was it truer than at that dinner table.
Bandra is also responsible for this piece:
If you look carefully at the activities of Messrs Writer Relocation today, you will notice, that as the rules of India’s boom have changed, the trucks are not moving in, but out. India not being immune to layoffs, and global companies suffering the way they are, suddenly companies have been saying to their people—it’s over.
“I’m stuck in a foreign country with the financial overheads of a maharaja but no more Wall Street money to back me up,” confesses an expat family man who called up his Writers truck a week ago. “It’s not that I want to go home, New York is a graveyard for jobs right now, but I guess I’m scared to live hand-to-mouth in a country I barely know outside posh hotels and restaurants.”