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  • Saylee Soundalgekar, Narrated By: Sachin Sharma

Tagging Bombay

Laid back on a couch on his twenty feet long hall of this office, Sachin Sharma re-counts his decade in

Mumbai. The founder member and partner of Culture Opus, has a studio that creates hair- raising stimulations, ear-splitting stories and eye-popping illustrations. Working as a journalist for mid- day, he now is a senior researcher at his firm where he produces documentaries and advertisements.

Sachin came to Mumbai after twenty years of age. Born and brought up in Madhya Pradesh, living

near the sea was one of his magic wish as a child. “Nature magnifies itself and enthralls a man in two

forms- the ocean and the mountains.” Says Sachin, who had experienced the mountains back home but

experienced the limitlessness of the blue wonder, for the very first time only after he was twenty.

Madhya Pradesh, a state surrounded by land on all four sides, is naïve of the bounty the sea holds.

When he first ‘faced’ the sea, he was awestruck. “I had least expected how the swish of a single wave

would change my life; least expected how the gentle drooling of the foam over my feet could give me

goose bumps; least expected the continual crashing surfs would rejuvenate every cell of my body! ” His

eyes shone as he illustrated his journey after coming to Bombay. Coming from a land of havelis, the

1BHK life, with his wife was a herculean task. Working for mid-day newspaper gave him the much

wanted peek into Mumbai, which laid a firm foundation in establishing his firm.

“I have never been to Europe, or to the United States, or seen the Eiffel Tower. However, there are

zillions of people who have never seen the sea! I wish someday their wish gets granted.” Sachin’s

mother was one of them. The sea of Bombay was the first ever water expanse she had ever seen at the

age of 38. On his was from the Andheri residence to the Juhu beach, Sachin’s fingers were shivering in

the auto-rickshaw as he anxiously awaited his mother’s response to the cars honking, roads undulating,

and mob rushing... The auto-rickshaw went through the heighted walls, through the road less taken.

Moving forward through the narrow vista, her eyes squinted. The rickshaw halted, breeze blew

caressing her hair and her eyes couldn’t contain the sheer vastness of the Arabian. The thick silence

between the two, could have been easily sliced by a knife. At last, she burst into tears of joy, pride and

admiration for her son. We so easily overlook, what we possess being a part of Mumbai every day!

Back in his hometown, Sachin’s locality boasts of a barber with a name plate ‘Bombaywala haircut’. A

popular tale that he narrates is about coming to Mumbai and assisting the assistant who cuts Jackie

Shroff’s hair. This value addition in his ‘curriculum vitae’ permits him to charge every customer Rs.40

extra of the usual amount. All the aspiring Bollywood stars from the locality are obliged to get their

make-overs from him. In addition to this, he gets a very special respect when he says he has experience

from Bombay! “Mumbai, is not what we have from Colaba to Bandra or from Churchgate to Virar. It’s

the feeling of belongingness. It is anything and everything that has originated from Mumbai, stays in

Mumbai and will die in Mumbai. It is this sea that marks the true boundaries of Mumbai, defines it and

gives it the much awarded characteristic.” Says Sachin.

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