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New in the City – in and around Gurgaon

November 6, 2014
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Gurgaon is a concrete jungle.

Gurgaon has shopping malls, office buildings and residential towers only. Gurgaon is all brick-n-mortar.

Gurgaon has dust in the air, no water underground and no drains. Gurgaon has roads filled with potholes and pigs, Bentleys and cows!

Gurgaon has impolite Jats and no streetlights. Gurgaon has an unwritten 9 pm curfew for women. Gurgaon has swanky restaurants and seedy liquor joints next to each other.

Gurgaon drivers swear and swerve at the same time.

Gurgaon has sky-high realty prices and swelling unsold inventory of properties.

Yet it is known as the Millennium City – home to hundreds of big corporates and lakhs of individuals, mostly from outside the city and some from outside the country.

Last December, I had to uproot myself from Calcutta after 24 years and land in Gurgaon, with all the above pointers crowding my judgment. I was newly married, about to begin the second phase of my life in a city I never thought I would live! On top of it, I had to adjust in a new workplace and team, post my transfer from my Calcutta office.

 For the first six months, whoever I met would first ask me, “How do you find Gurgaon?” To which I would mumble an ‘okay’ since I was still carrying my first impression mixed with preconceived notions.

Very soon, I will complete a year of living in Gurgaon. During the past year, I set up our first marital home from scratch, shopped for electronics, furniture and home décor, hosted friends and family, overcame a trying time, settled in my new workplace, travelled a lot for work and little for pleasure, partied late, acquired a collection of alcohol (thanks to a friend), became an online shopaholic, explored markets in Delhi by myself, learnt to manage a household including shopping for groceries and fish (yes, I have bought fish for the first time here), cooked, survived a harsh winter and extreme summer with no rain, took up yoga after 18 years, connected with old friends and made new ones. May be because I was living anywhere by myself for the first time, I observed my surroundings more keenly, sometimes with my Cal-tinted glasses.

My  posts in the ‘New in the City’ category will chronicle my past, present and future experiences  of living it up in and around Gurgaon.

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