Today it finally happened. It started off early morning, when I left for my workout at around half past six. As soon as I had gotten out of my building, I felt the unmistakable chill in the air. While coming back an hour later, though the sun had come out nice and bright, the temperature did not seem to have increased much. And when a brisk 20-minute walk from Santacruz station to my office resulted in not more than a couple of drops of sweat, it was official. Winter had finally arrived in Mumbai !!
Now the arrival of winter in Mumbai, unlike in the West, does not result in too many ooh-s and aah-s from the local populace. Nor can it be captured on film and posted on Facebook, unlike the many snaps of the first snowfall. But it is an important event nevertheless. For a city that has suffered for nearly ten months in 30+ C temperatures and 90%+ humidity, the onset marks a welcome relief to the millions of Mumbaikars. For one, the daily commuting becomes less of a nightmare. No longer are you subjected to various odours while travelling in the suburban locals. And neither do you arrive in office fully drenched in sweat. I reckon that, in itself, should account for an increasing in productivity at the workplace. No wonder winter is so soothing and pleasant.
For me, the only flipside to winter is the reduced duration of daytime. Unlike most Cancerians (who are creatures of the night as described by Linda Goodman), I am more of a diurnal person. So I do not particularly like it when, by the time I leave office usually at 6.30pm, it is already dark outside. Sometimes, I wonder how people in the northern latitiudes manage to live in the extreme colds and just a few hours of sunlight. Of course, they do get, by way of compensation, pleasant temperatures and eighteen hour days a few months later. Would'nt it be great to have mean daily temperature of 20 C and 15-hour days throughout the year ??.. If wishes were horses.. :)
Till that time, these two months of the winter chill are the ones to enjoy in Mumbai....