Friday, April 18, 2008

City of People

I remember once in my first year I asked my friend Ashutosh "Do you like Bangalore ?". He said "ya I do, but not the people here, I wished the city was Bangalore but the people were of Lucknow only".
To that I replied " The people only make the city, if it had people from Lucknow they would have made this Lucknow only"
He agreed.

But now I am confused.
Maybe the its the other way around. Maybe Bangalore would have made them 'Bangalore people' only.

So now I ask do the people make the city or its the city that makes the people ?

When I entered Bangalore around 5 years back I was a different person from what I left it as. It molded me, sometimes hammered me into shape. And I am not the same I was, I can't think of anything I did to the city but I know of hell lot of things the city did to me.

From a wide eyed and naive boy of 19 to a guy which gets shocked by nothing its been a quite a change.

But the years I was there I influenced a lot of people around me, sometimes subtly sometimes dramatically, sometimes knowingly sometimes unknowingly. And they might have influenced others around them. Thus maybe causing a small dent in this great city's Armour.

When I went to Bangalore I was surprised to see my brother and his friend's lifestyle. I thought how did they lived the way they did, said the things they said.
But after 4 years I became somewhat like them, rather we became somewhat like them.
We got 'Bangalored' in our own way.

But how did we change ? Or how does anyone change ?
There was nothing in the water there. No magic ingredient in the food. It was the people around us that change us. What they say, what they do and what they show they did. And those people make the city and makes us too.

So do we make the the city ? Or it is the city that makes us ?

P.S. - Comments awaited. Maybe we can debate on this and find out. I know this all is very vague and confusing so will try to clarify whatever I can.


  1. no bro in my opinion ,u become what u want to ..d surroundings does have its influence end of the day ,its just U ...if u tink city changes ppl ,then getting back to ur
    (vernacular)hometown shud have changd u ,bt u did nt want to change ,so u remaind d same !

  2. Well 2 things here -
    1. All of us resist change, thats the Basic principle of the Universe but the city still changes us.
    2. Coming here the 2nd time I was never a past of the city, I did not interact with anyone. And still I have changed. Can you not see that ?

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  4. Change is inevitable - and no matter how much you deny it, you do change, in ways which probably you never realise unless you revert back to your old ways. I've left Calcutta 5 years ago and I still have typical Calculltan features in me. I am partially Bengali now!

    I lived in Bangalore for 4 years - very important 4 years of my life, something in me changed, and I thought this is what I am and what I'm always going to be.

    i left Bangalore a year ago, and I'm now a resident of Delft. I have changed yet again!

    I sometimes fail to understand how easy it is for us to get transformed by our surroundings. But, do not forget, my friend, that it is our will and our circumstances that chnage us more than the people around us. I live in an International community in Holland. I have not become Dutch, or Mexican or Italian or even Turkish; but I have changed.

    Maybe, when I return to Cal, I will get used to the life there and seem to people like I've adjusted, but deep down inside I know I have changed - and that I can never CHANGE!

  5. Well I have been in Bangalore too for 4 years. But I did not become Kannadi if u say in that sense.So I'm sure that you would not have become Dutch in this 1 year.

    Agreed with most of the things ypu said. We think that we have not changed because the change is always Gradual and we and people around us fail to notice it. You only notice it when you go back or when someone points it out to you.

    Back in Bangalore people always took me for a Delhite. Somehow I did not fit in their model of someone from Kota or Rajasthan. And I do not why and do not what image people had in their mind. So I don't know how much was I made in Kota.

    Well three English phrases come into my mind right now -

    1. Birds of a feather, flock together.
    2. A man is known by the company he keeps.
    3. When in Rome, do as the Romans.

    So do we become like our peer group or we choose our peer group like us ? I'm sure both to an extent are true, but which is dominant ?


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