- Live in Mumbai for all your life - you need not have been born there, but you should have grown up there.
- As you grow up, your needs will increase, but don't worry about it, coz your family will prosper as well.
- Shift to a bigger house in a new building, coz your parents decide that you and your siblings now need a seperate room each.
- Wait for 3-4 years. Mumbai monsoon will wreck havoc on your building - paint will start pealing off and dust/dirt will accumulate in and around the various crevices on the facade of your building.
- Highspeed winds and pigeons will deposit plant seeds in this dirt and rain water will cause them to hatch into saplings (Figures 1a, 1b, 1c & 1d).
- In other cases a kid will hide from his mom (or an old mom will hid from her grown up kid who has kids of his own) and without paying heeds to her words, would have just a "last, chota saa, iske baad aur nahin" sweet sweet mango. And then all evidence of the puerile pleasure will need to be hidden - and so the mango seed is ducked outside the bathroom window....(Figures 2)
- ... whence it falls down bouncing off the plumbing and walls and finally landing on to the ledge outside your bathroom window along with other refuse such as toffee wrappers, gutka packets thrown by workers, pieces of duct tape and of course used condoms and their wrappers (yuck!!).
- The next monsoon, the mango sapling takes root, coaxed out of its seed by the rain. Other saplings (mostly useless weeds) growing in the dirt on the ledge keep it company. (Figures 3a and 3b)
- At the end of monsoon, its time to clean up your house. After fighting off booklice in vain, you decide to do something which you think would be more under control. So you call your mom and tell her about your plan to climb out onto the ledge , clean up the dirt, remove the weeds and save the mango plant. She ways "Waise toh yeh paudhe kabhi ugane se bhi theek se nahin ugte, but kachre mein padhe padhe kahin bhi ugna chalu kar dete hain". You smirk, you were expecting such a line from her.
- So you go ahead and remove the glass louvers one by one (Figure 4)..
- .. and climb out on to the ledge and start cleaning stuff.Some of the crap fall down and you hear someone shouting from down below. You keep at it, scooping out all the dirt using a spoon and collecting out into the plastic bag. You save the mango plant and clean it up. (Figures 5a and 5b)
- A few earthworm falt out along with the dirt as you clean up the mangoplants root - they will have to be sacrificed - down in to the drain they go! (Figure 6)
- You look down out at the area around your society's gym/club house and pick a spot for your new mango plant. (Figure 7)
- You go down and survey the area (Figure 8), find an empty pot and plant your mango sapling. You catch a few earthworm and put them into the flower pot to keep your plant some company. (Figure 9)
- You water the plant regularly whenever you pass by and feel smug about it.
- And since you have nothing better to do, you blog about it.
- Technology (internet, digital camera, irfanview) helps you polish your mediocrity and soon enough, there are people reading about your adventure.
- But you like gardening - and getting to do something even remotely close to gardening in this overcrowded Mumbai City is something significant - something worth telling your friends!