Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Traits of a true MUMBAIKAR

        They say USA is the land of opportunities. I say, Mumbai is the land of opportunities in India. With a population of 21 million and still growing by every day, it is a city that gives food , clothing and at times shelter to everybody who comes up. Just less than one third of the population would be natives in a metro like Mumbai. People keep flooding in Mumbai, some with an intent to go back and some do not.My dad was one of those who came to Mumbai 33 years back with an intent to get his job transferred back to his home town soon. Such is the city that he could not leave Mumbai and that is how I became a Mumbaikar.

          Now for those who are unaware, Mumbaikar is a term which is used for the people staying in Mumbai for more than 15 years. It means you are a person staying in Mumbai and gives no clue if you are a native Marathi or some one else. I said 15 years cause that is the official time required to get a domicile.The people we term Mumbaikar have a different caste, different religion and a different class in its own. In this post I would give you a few common traits that will help you identify one.

    It is a snack that portrays the life in Mumbai. Life here is fast with hardly any time to waste. So Wada-pav is a food that you can hold i one hand and eat it on the go. Like the place, it also comes in different rates and would satisfy the hunger and ego of all the class of people. Someone who does not like it , is not truly a Mumbaikar. And mind you all, we do not take anything negative on wada-pav lightly.We will fight back and abuse you like no one else has ever done before.

2) Time is Money
   If you want to know the value of time, ask a Mumbaikar. A 7:42 train comes at 7:42 and a Mumbaikar will catch it for more than 350 days in a year. We value every minute. We would come at 7 PM on a 7 PM party and not 10 PM. A minute used well is a penny earned for us. With the fast and hectic lifestyle of the city, a person who does not value time, will never be valued in Mumbai.

3) Prefer trains over Car
 Again since time is money for us and we are a bunch of modest people , a person with an annual income of a million would also be travelling by trains to avoid the traffic and to reach his destination faster. We hardly believe in showing off.

4) Think of Parking when we buy a car
 In a city that is crowded and cramped the biggest trouble in the life of a Mumbaikar buying a car is to find a parking place. This is the biggest concern for any place that we go. This does not happen often but there are cases of Murders because of fights started with parking places. the selling point of certain malls or societies is that they have ample parking space. We value space.

5) Least MTI in English
   If compared to people all over the country, Mumbaikars are the ones who would have the least mother tongue influencee in their English. We will not have a thick accent nor will we pronounce English words in our mother tongue. So this is also one of the criteria to distinguish a Mumbaikar from the rest of the country

6) Impure Hindi
 A Mumbaikar's Hindi would be comic and the worst in comparison. The term uses is Bombaiyya Hindi for the Hindi we speak. It is a mix of many languages and terms. This was not commonly know to people from other parts of the country before some very hit bollywood movies made it famous in the other parts of the country

 These are a few common traits that will help you identify a Mumbaikar from the crowd. There are few others like we will be least likely to complain about crowds and that an hour's journey daily for work would be very common.
I am sure you would have some more too. Feel free to add them. After all Mumbai and Mumbaikars are very accommodating :-)



  1. Cool... Remineded me of my days back...
    Being a mumbaikar m missing it all together...

  2. You forgot to mention the fact that you can be hungry at 1 in the morning and still find something to eat. I have been living in Bangalore for more that an year now, and whenever I leave office after 10.30-11, I have to go hungry coz there's no place available to eat. Whereas, I have had a pav bhaji or dosa after 1.30 in Mumbai.

    I have been to a couple of more cities in India and haven't found this trend there.

    As far as trains being on time is concerned, that used to be true 2-3 yrs back, but from what I have experienced in the last 2-3 years, trains services have gone down rather badly.

    But still, all said and done, it's home. :)

  3. Good one it reminds me my mumbai days ...

  4. @ para and Praveen : Thanks
    @zeus : I agree..Food anytime

  5. infiltrator... but what would mumbai be without north Indians like u and south indians like me.. we are the flavour boss..

    it was bombayites.. dehaatis like u made it mumbaikar.. matrubhasha n all dat.. :P

    wada paav ki jai ho.. lekin rishi kapur se yeh hulbaazi achi nahi lagti.. i thot u were a romantic hero...

    8.20 ccg toh 8 baje se aake khada ho jata hai... n dnt talk abt being in time n all.. if ppl were actually so punctual they wudnt have ever tried breaking the nerul bridge and then act hurt to divert attention from the effort made... also the propable bed rest for a mere sprain cud get gals visiting the patient back home.. hmmm.. one stone two birds... thank u DY PATIL, for the strong NERUL infrastructure.. whether u made all of it or not...

    say what u want sir... we love our overcrowded, ready to burst local trains... there is nothing much we can do about it.. n frakly speaking we wouldnt have it any other way.. hanging on for dear life is the everyday adventure of a common working class person... verbal lashes get my creative juices flowing each time in an argument... so there we can even complain of not having the time to have hobbies..

    yes parking n the hazards of having not enuf space of it.. have gotten to know it recently.. no mater how important a meeting that u are working ur way towards.. the first thing that bothers you even before starting to the venue is whether they will have parking.. considering the traffic snarls in saki naka u'd rather walk than getting hypertensive over parking...

    accent.. hahaha.. few of us even go to the extent of developing fake foreign accents.. wink wink

    regarding impure hindi.. sir it is ur fault.. u northindians havent brought it down very welll... atleast we have a SI form of the language where even women dont believe in gender biases when they use "mai aaya tha" " mai jayega" n stuff in their convos..

    well u forgot the most imp part of mumbai tht girls tend to remember more than guys.. specially the ones in college.. shopping of the streets.. getting the collest looking clothes and accessories off the streets which for a steal which may propably last only a few monthfs.. but who cares as the fashion in mumbai changes with the seasons...

    mast tha yaar.. lekin there is so much more.. so much more..

  6. Good one, reminded me of my great days in mumbai...Can't never forget them for sure...some more to add.....the autos in rainy season have plastic curtains....local trains still can't close the door while it rains....people will still try to reach office in heavy "work from home" is the common religion...and a topic to talk about...everyone has expert opinion and has passion about it.....people like to make n stay in groups that can be in trains, buses, office canteen, and even at chai naka...can't forget the chai at railway station & cig.....just great great memories...

  7. Can't miss Ganesh Visarjan, people will serve water n lite snacks to the people in procession..

  8. Arre Bollywood...Amitabh's bday.. celebrated on a large scale... one shud see the craze ppl have for this Actor..kaam kaaz chodke tapak jaate hai uske ghar ke samne....

  9. @ Harshada: I agree..there is much more...Appreciate your writing

    @ Umesh: Cricket and rains...truly Mumbai..Though I doubt Ganpati visharja..Its more of in entire Maharashtra then only Mumbai..Thanks for writing in

    @ Sapna: Bollywood..yes..Amitabh I doubt..Its mostly the people just visiting mumbai or the ones who have just come to Mumbai visit his place..A mumbaikar cares less..Atleast thats what i feel so..

  10. A die-hard Bombay fan... call it Bombay.. Mumbai or anything else... I don't care.. I just <3 it...

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  12. And a queue for everything...So true.And I love Mumbai cliches.It's just so much fun to talk like that. Friends are friend

    1. The best part is when my relatives from the North come and I tell them ' Train main bahut GARDI hoga..and they stare at me confused...


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