Why I Choose Mumbai Over Chandigarh

I was born, brought up and schooled for 18 years in Chandigarh. I used to really like my city because of it’s outstanding beauty and the weather and my friends of course. But then I interacted with its people.

Here I shall express my dislike for Chandigarh and the basic differences between the two cities I’ve lived in and why I would prefer Mumbai over Chandigarh.

Ever since we were small, my parents made sure that Ada (my sister) and I lived our lives the hard way and to the fullest. They said it and they said it again and they couldn’t say it enough; ‘exposure is everything’.

Mumbai is 603 km sq. 5.3 times bigger than Chandigarh (114 km sq) 14 times more populated (12 million VS 808,515) and about 60% harder to live in. And a harder life equals more exposure. This is why:


Like i said, Mumbai is huge! It is so difficult, time consuming and distressing to go from one place to the other. The kind of people you come across in the train, the kind of stories taxi drivers share with you about 26/11, the condition of your feet after walking to and from college everyday. I learn something new everyday, something that didn’t happen in Chandigarh; Get ‘driven’ to school, get driven back, go home, eat, sleep, repeat, thats all that happened there. Nobody here has time to think about what to wear, there’s a fixed budget for everyday and more or less a tight fixed schedule as well. There can’t be sudden plans because executing them in a minimum time frame of 40 minutes is next to impossible. And here’s what happens in Chandigarh.

A: Listen I’ll be late, papa’s taken the bigger car to office and there’s only the small car at home and for OBVIOUS reasons I can’t come to your party in that. I’ll leave as soon as the big car arrives.

B: Cool!


So I casually surveyed 50 people in Chandigarh and asked them this: ‘If you go to the mall in Chandigarh 10 times (not the same day obviously) how many times out of 10 do you think you will see somebody you know?’. I got an average of 8.2.

I’m not complaining! It’s bound to happen in such a small, social city. But while other people don’t mind it, I find it extremely exasperating. How do you meet the same people over and over again? How can you not want to meet new people, hear new stories, observe more people?


Mumbai is the commercial and financial capital of India; And you can call Chandigarh the snob capital. Mumbai has more money of course but they don’t show off about it. People in Mumbai are humble and come to terms with the fact that other people CAN have more money than you. But in Chandigarh everyone is almost worried about other people’s wealth. And that is why in Chandigarh, people want and are recognised by their expensive cars, obnoxious number plates, fancy phone numbers, houses in Sector 8-9-10, and their branded clothes. This is what happens in Chandigarh.

A: Don’t tuck your shirt in please, it looks better when it’s out.

B: Are you crazy? How will people know that I spent 32,000 rupees on my belt.


Now, I could conduct another survey among my Chandigarh peeps but that would be pointless because we all know the answer, the question being ‘Have you ever received a phone call from a friend who is confirming/questioning a rumour about you?’

I’m not saying Mumbai is gossip-less. But everybody doesn’t know everybody here. Whereas in Chandigarh, your secrets last for precisely three and a half minutes, and then the phone call arrives. Which is why Chandigarh teaches you to trust nobody but your family, which is excellent.

Another problem with the people in Chandigarh is that their translation skills are unimaginably poor. Just the way people pass on a message or comment from one person to the other person is absolutely disgusting. I don’t know if people realise what they’re doing because they end up creating so many misunderstandings, which leads to fights and unnecessary, aimless hatred towards someone who was a close friend or even a best friend once. And I have witnessed an incident that I’m going to share with you.

A: I don’t know, I mean I don’t like the way C dressed up that day. I would never dress up like that! She was showing so much skin! It’s just not acceptable.

B: I know. It was showy indeed!

*later that evening*

B to C: A called you a slut today.

Therefore A and C fight, and never speak to each other while B wriggles out of it and maintains a fairly decent friendship with both! Now will somebody please explain how this works?!

I can go on ranting about Chandigarh, but I should stop here. At the end of the day Chandigarh is where my home and family is, and I want to stick to it. Im not taking back anything I said about it but everybody’s got a different opinion. I am not and will not be attracted to the attitude and people in that city, at least for now. And to the people who want to move on and do something with their lives, I suggest you get out of that well.

Three’s A Crowd, Four’s A Family!

Let me introduce you to four of my favourite creatures on this planet! My little babies. (Maybe not so little. And no I’m not married).


This baby is a mix between a Labrador and a golden retriever. When we planned to get them (him and his sister Fifi) we were expecting them to be pure golden retrievers. When they finally came home as 3 month old puppies, I would imagine combing their long luscious hair when they were older. Well clearly that didn’t happen. Tofu was a brat as a puppy. He was fat and had a white paw and would walk around the house squeaking- trying to bark for food. And after he got his food (and Fifi’s food!) he would crap all over the room and go sleep in his bed. Eat sleep poop repeat was his mantra to survive!

I don’t really need to tell you how he is now at the age of almost 2 and a half years because he’s still the same! He’s really fat now because he got neutered at the age of 1 so the surgery effected his body type. But he is a strong boy! You’ll know when he tries pushing you into the pool!



This girl can be your favourite and the most annoying within seconds. Fifi needs emotional attachment rather than someone continuously petting her ( like Tofu). Her eyes have galaxies in them and beg for love. She’ll be fine if you sit next to her and chat shit to her because that’s what she wants! She fell into the deeper side of an empty swimming pool as a baby because of which she has a slight limp when she walks. She follows certain paths around the house and will follow only those! It’s a mystery if she gets the same amount of food as tofu because she’s very thin! Both tofu and fifi love our housekeeper Krishna Bhaiya because he gives them food and belly rubs!



I’ve always loved cats but I never interacted with them until my parents got me a pair of kittens for my 18th birthday! They were adopted on the 4th of November and they were about 4 months old. I wanted to name them Blair and Chuck respectively because of my love towards Gossip Girl, but I’m so glad I didn’t. (Also they were already named when they came home)

Twitch is called twitch because his ears twitch a lot. He’ll sit in one corner of the bed/table/sofa with the most evil look on his face and then he’ll wink at you. IT REALLY FEELS LIKE HES TELLING YOU THAT HE IS GOING TO MURDER YOU IN YOUR SLEEP. And then he twitches his ears. Twitch loves lizards and he loves spoiling my sofas. He gets lost way too often and we end up finding him behind bushes or in my closet. He loves chasing laser dots and does so enthusiastically because he never gives up! Twitch unlike Trix is not afraid of Tofu and Fifi. He doesn’t give two shits. He tries to avoid them of course but he doesn’t run away from them. I’m the mother who’s hoping that her kids will get along some day..



This little baby is like a voodoo cat. Her eyes will make you want to follow her wherever she goes. She’s hard to catch and very delicate. She is also way thinner than Twitch. Trix is named after Bellatrix from Harry Potter. She loves playing with her brother Twitch and she absolutely loves balls of wool! She’s a clean kitty cause she cleans up after pooping and she licks her fur clean several times a day! (I don’t see twitch do that very often, like I said he doesn’t give two shits).

Trix is extremely scared of tofu and Fifi. She just does not want to face them or interact with them. My poor dogs want to play with her, that’s all. But she thinks differently. Trix has scratched Fifi and tofu on the nose a couple of times out of fear and self defence. Little does she know she’s too small to hurt them. I hope she understands someday that the dogs will never hurt her! :)

UNO( RIP 26/6/2012)

My 5 year old pug passed away on 26th June 2012 because of a very unfortunate snake bite. I have a lot of memories with him. I always wanted a pug as a kid and I really pestered my parents to get me a one! They finally bought a pug for me. Initially I was very happy and would play with him but later I realised that I never took care of him or spent time with him. I regret passing on my responsibilities to other people.

He now rests in peace in his grave in our backyard. I will always love him. I hope he does too.




I know I know. What was I thinking. But hey, everyone has embarrassing days.
For me those embarrassing days were (as i call it) ‘My Boy Phase’. I had a boy cut, I wore baggy dull clothes, and I used to shop in the boys corner. I wasn’t inspired by someone..but you can say I HATED being a girl. It was annoying. Being called a girl, a weak person or sometimes just useless. I was small and now I realize that getting my hair cut was OBVIOUSLY not the right choice. But I don’t regret it at all.

During my boy phase..all I did was skateboard and play soccer. I refused to listen to my mom. I became untidy. I was rowdy. I used to burp out loud. I was stuck to my PSP. I was immature. In other words and in the true sense, I was just another teenage boy.

Being a girl, BUT being a boy (behavior, appearance) got me some of the craziest experiences..something a girl (gender wise) wouldn’t get to experience ever. I used to walk into public bathrooms and get yelled at by crazy women saying that “This is the girls loo”. Helpless and oblivious I would walk into the boys loo and fix my hair and come out. I would go to my girl friends birthdays and exit as the “Cute boy all the girls had a crush on”. And now, the best story.

My parents and I were  on our way back from Goa. I was 13. We got the seats near the emergency exit and as per rule, those seats are meant for 16+. The air hostess walked up to my mother and said “How old is your son, ma’am?”. My mom smiled and said “Daughter. My daughter is 13″. The air hostess apologized and told my mother that she would have to change my seat because I was too young to be sitting there. So she put me on the seat right in front of the emergency exit seats, with a boy who was my age. I took my PSP and sat with the boy. He extended his hand and said “Hi Im Mayank”. “Anya..”i said with a smile shook hands. He must haven’t heard my name properly. HE DIDN’T.

An hour into the flight we became best friends. Discussing video games and wrestlers. And then I asked him THE question. “So do you have any girl friends?”. “CHHEEE. (Yuck) I HATE GIRLS”. I froze. “Why are you talking to me then?” I asked him. “You’re not a girl” he laughed. “Of course I am!! I just have a boy cut. Besides why would a boy be named Anya?”. He put his head down and slept. We didn’t speak after that.

I will never forget this.

And now here I am! 4 years later. I LOVE shopping for clothes, the only difference is that now they’re skirts. I refuse to listen to my mom, the only difference is that its when she says ‘No’ for a party. My drawers are extremely untidy..the only difference is that its my make up that’s scattered.

Every person NEEDS a CHANGE. In some way or the other to realize things in life and to discover/re-discover themselves. And I definitely did.

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Taarini Ravjit


We all have people in our lives who have been with us for the longest time. A person whose been with you through your good and bad times. Through the fights, the laughter, the scoldings, the sarcasm, the humor. Endless conversations, chocolate making sessions, charity work, homework, sleepovers, football practice and a million other things. For me, its her.

Taarini Ravjit, the insanely talented woman. Artist, footballer for India, amazing bathroom singer, mad athlete, head girl of YPS (batch of ’13) and my best friend since class 4. From a purple dress and tweety clips to a beggars attire (we shared that feature) to baggy clothes to finally a closet filled with clothes from Zara, something that never changed was our completely crazy bond. From evil twins to partners in crime. How can one explain 12 years of friendship?

Practicing ‘Black Magic’ on her neighbors. Begging for an extra cold coffee AND managing to get it FOR FREE from Barista (Manali) with the excuse that there is NO Barista in Chandigarh. Fooling our school that we’re twins and were separated LONG back AND succeeding. Getting boy cuts, naming ourselves Tarun and Anmay and teasing GIRLS. Copying DUMB people. Fighting over petty issues. Puns AND puns AND PUNS. Finishing each others homework. Making fun of people. Coming up with some of the best ideas. Endless birthday cards both ways. A million secrets. SO many plans for the future. Crying together after our Maths exam. Doing a countdown for our class X result. Making fun of people AFTER the result. Birthday wishes at 12 o’clock. And having a scrapbook full of these incidents.

Loved by everybody, this girl is a GEM. People who are her friends are keepers forever. The parents of the friends look at her and wish they had a child like her. My own father for example. This HILARIOUS mad child is what you call ‘perfection’. She never gives up on anything.

I love you.


Anya: A Rather Unusual Name

A lot of people aren’t named Anya. Maybe cause a lot of people didn’t kick their mommy endlessly in the womb, so endlessly that it lead to their name being Anya..which in  Sanskrit means ‘inexhaustible’. Yes. I was named on the basis of my actions even before i was born. I think that’s pretty crazy. But i don’t mind it one bit..and i’m sure my parents don’t either since it is extremely appropriate even now. And no i don’t kick her still just in case you’re wondering.

My name originates from a lot of countries and has different meaning in all, for obvious reasons. Anya in Russian means ‘Gracious’ or ‘Bringing goodness’. In Sanskrit means ‘Inexhaustible’. In Greek means ‘Resurrection’ and in Urdu means ‘Unique’.

When people ask me the meaning of my name, I prefer telling them the Sanskrit and the Urdu meaning. If you asked me, like my mother, I would also prefer the word ‘inexhaustible’ most suitable for myself. For several reasons..the popular one being a chatterbox.

I have never come across someone whose name is Anya. But i would love to. So all the Anya’s out there, feel free.