My Kolkata is not ‘tilottoma’, a beautiful woman, no way sir. He is a man, definitely he is. More like a gruff middle aged, middle class man. From his narrow lanes to the broad streets, his high rises to his shanties, his drenching monsoons to his blistering summers, he is a ‘MAN’. Who is angry at the politics, pollution, population, bribery, bad roads, and endless other things. He has been fighting too hard too long. He has knowledge, art and culture. He has many great books embedded in his soul, yet is too busy to even think about them as he has many mouths to feed.
He is unhappy about his life, but continues to remain on the same old path of existence. Never once he rises above himself to see how glorious his life could have become. Like a middle aged man he quietly witness some of his children taking the wrong path, they put him down, call him a old man, laugh at him. His children make friends with crime, corruption, laziness and false pride. And some of his bright children abandon him for a newer better city; a city, any city which can offer much more than their grumpy old man.
Once handsome and brave he is now only a shadow of the MAN he could have become. His dreams have melted into tears over the years; he now patiently waits for the remaining of his children to take over. The ones who have decided to stand by their ‘old man’ to give him a better life. Kolkata looks into the eyes of his remaining children with hope, a desire, and an aspiration of a better life.