Wednesday, November 17, 2010

"Kem Che Dikra?"

These long breaks are becoming a habit now. Sorry, but a lot has happened since May (the last post) and it has everything to do with Broken Compass. Shall write about the rather exciting and eventful journey of Broken Compass in another post.

This one is about my latest article which has been published on The India Tube website. An article about a community I love dearly. 

The Parsis. 

My love affair with the Parsi community began 14 years ago when I first met my bubbly, curly haired, mad baawi (a common term used for Parsi women) roommate at AWWA hostel, Mumbai. I would have never guessed then, that over the years, she would become one of my closest friends, and through her life, family and friends, I would become so close to her community and its culture. Post our hostel days, we ended up staying at her parents’ home in Tata Co-op Housing Colony, Elphinstone (just one of the many Parsi colonies in Mumbai). Over the 3 years that I lived there, I saw a very different side of the city. One that is a very integral part of it, yet, poles apart from the fast paced indifference that Mumbai stands for.
Here is my article on The Baugs of Mumbai.


  1. I am thoroughly impressed with ur article on my community.
    It's been a pleasure to have u around, with us in our very group always with a smiling face n arms wide open for caress..
    I am proud to have a friend like u n specially with the amount of zest n enthusiasm u have written this article in such adorable words for our community, I m speechless..
    Ur command over English is outstanding n the article framed to perfection.
    N moreover that parsi lady gossip about whose son involved with whose daughter is hilarious yet true..
    I must congratulate u on this marvel n must say a job well done Manjari.
    On behalf of the community, proud of u girl.

  2. Thank you so much Ronnie...your words mean a lot! The pleasure was all mine, to stay with all of you, experience your life and just be accepted with a lot of love and affection, till today. Some of my closest friends are from your colony.
    I am glad you liked the article.

  3. Nice piece Manjari. I am one of those rarities who never lived in a baug (DPC, doesn't seem to be a real baug) so I am as much an observer as you are of these stately neighbourhoods. Like the way you have encapsulated the whole experience.

  4. Your bubbly, curly haired, mad baawi friend loves the article. You have captured the essence and the heart of the Parsis's really well and its amazing what an insight and understanding of the Parsis community you have and how well you have portrayed us.

    I love the examples you have given and especially love the conversation with Parvez:-).

    On a whole, its an amazing article and thanks so much for making me a part of it. YOu write beautiful words and I am proud to have you as a part of my life and my family....Jennifer.

  5. @Vispy: Thank you so much.

    @Jennifer: Thanks to you, I was introduced to the community and thanks to you this article was written. :)

  6. a community shrouded in mystery ....a wonderful article about a wonderful bunch of people who live and let others live in peace and harmony...cheers

  7. I like your article and its been really well articulated. You have used humour and understanding and ended up with an informative and amusing article.

    I agree with Ronnie that your command of the language is very good. The examples of the unmarried 28 year old, the conversation on what you have cooked, the morning greetings, all are a part of the daily life of Parsis and hats off to you for writing all this.

    My mom too jst read your article and she loves it.

    Thanks for everything!!!

  8. "Oh, no wonder you're so sane." This apparently is a compliment, I get often, once a Baug-bawa gets to know I have never lived in one.

    Your article made me feel like I've missed out on my culture, a bit. I say that even at the risk of losing my 'sanity'.

    The write-up did have scope for more detail/insights. Or maybe I just want to know more. Also, dikra literally means child :)

    More power to you.
    Vaspar Dandiwala

  9. @big-evil: and a wonderful bunch of people they surely are!

    @Parvez: If I hadn't seen it up close, i wouldnt have been able to put it all down the way I have. :) So a big thanks to all of you. Regards to your mom.

    @Vaspar: You, sane? Really? :D If it weren't for the word count limitations, the article would have been much longer, trust me. I could have gone on and on so I guess the limit was good in a way!
    This meant a whole lot: "Your article made me feel like I've missed out on my culture, a bit."
    Thank you.