Born and brought up in Bangalore, I have seen tremendous change in namma city. Those were days when you could play 'gully' cricket on the streets without any worry of traffic. Gone are those days when the city used to be traffic free.
During my college days, on Sundays, we used to go from Ulsoor to Cubbon park, jogging all along MG Road till Cubbon park at the end of the MG Road, have masala dosa (at Mayura or Maurya Hotel - I don’t remember now) inside the park. While coming back to Ulsoor, we used to walk through the left side of MG road footpath ramp (Boulevard), now MG Road Metro station.
The Cubbon Road had miniscule vehicle movement as only few people used take that road in 70s. After 8.30 pm, we could never find anyone moving on the road.
The climate was so cool in 70s and 80s; we used to wear woollen sweaters and jerkins throughout the year. No one used to sweat and most houses never had to switch on the fans.
The circuses and exhibitions during summer vacation at Subash nagar ground (now Kempegowda Bus stand at Majestic), was an annual affair.
I have travelled a lot to other states, mostly southern, but none can beat Bangalore for its climate, the cosmopolitan culture, get-togethers, clubs, outings, the roads filled with trees, etc. On landing here after visiting other cities, I used get goose bumps. Such was the joy of this city.
Dramatic changes have taken place over the years due to IT taking centre stage, where you can see all kinds of people from all over the country. It has become overcrowded and polluted.
Gone are the golden days of the greens. You cannot spot a sparrow now but in the 70s, you could easily find sparrows in equivalent numbers to crows near almost all houses and lanes.
Having said that, I still love namma Bangalore for its growth and development and for its still better climate in comparison to others. There is still plenty of joy in the city and at times, I feel awestruck by the harmonious balance between technology, development and culture. It is indeed a rare mix and makes me proud to be a Bangalorean.
(The writer is a resident of Ulsoor)