Whenever I come back to my hometown from college, I bring two bags of laundry and a big, hungry heart with myself. Thinking about living away from home, I find myself feeling a mixture of pride and disappointment. I feel proud that I am making it on my own and disappointment that I miss some of the comforts of my previous life that I had in my hometown. When I am here, I’d go out at night and drink three glasses of chai with the people who once took up my whole world. I’ll hear them talking about their new friends and how their lives have moved on. I can see subtle differences between the ones who stayed and the ones who left. But as all good things come to an end, so does my stay at the home and I leave with a bag of clean laundry and sense of nostalgia. I know that I’m moving on and ultimately that’s good but one question that always pops up in my mind is “will my own city be the same when I’ll be back next time? ” because winds of change are blowing around our city.
After spending eighteen years of your life in the city, the story changes, there is addition of few things and subtraction of others and there you see your own city going through metamorphosis. A state-of-the art amusement park, new infrastructures, the new patliputra railway station, new flyovers, glowing street lights in narrow lanes,couple of multiplexes, and newly opened eateries are among the many firsts that has come up in the city in the recent days. And it is not only about the high rise buildings but also developments in different sectors that have astonished all of us who are staying away from our hometown.
Few things like women driving auto rickshaws immediately caught my gaze. But the thing which fascinated me the most was to see street lights in the lanes that used to be dark in the night and seeing that darkness would make us frightened to take that lane. Seeing these lanes properly lit up brings a sense of ease and security that helps us, especially women, to commute even in the darkest hour of the night. It is not only about the new developments as I have always reminiscent over the good old days and realized that newer and better times are slowly coming. Most importantly the biggest realization was that life can still be so unpredictably beautiful because of the comfort hometown usually offers. Everybody’s hometown occupies a very special place in their hearts and all the memories attached to it bring us back to where it all had started. Whether it is about the rickshaws or the golgappas, all these little things make us miss our hometown. But at the same time, all the individuals have different tales to tell. As Piyush Ranjan, who is currently living in Bengaluru told PatnaBeats that coming back to Patna for him means listening to people talking in the regional language. After spending so much time out of Bihar, listening to the ever so familiar language is a pleasure beyond compare. Piyush also said that one thing that struck him when he came back this time was the traffic signals and people diligently following the traffic lights. Medha Mansi who is now studying in Sikkim Manipal University returned after six months to Patna and she told PatnaBeats about how Patliputra, one of the residential areas of Patna, has changed with the opening of new shops, stores and new cafés with startling interior designs.
Prateek Verma has been out of his hometown since two and a half years and he was amazed by seeing that how Patna has geographically expanded.
Sometimes these various developments put me in dilemma of whether my city will become like one of those metro cities we are currently living in or will it be good if it remains to be a small city where I have grown up. I hope that this development continues not only in Patna but also reaches to the other cities of Bihar, then the true development will start flourishing. Still there are so many improvements needed to be made and challenges to be tackled. People need to become more serious towards road safety issues,people should become more careful about where should they throw garbage, they should stop unnecessary honking and most importantly, with changing infrastructures, their mindset should also change because this transformation will empower the citizens to see and do things differently. If we become responsible and more careful, we will be able to change the negative image of our state in the coming years and a new story would unfold.
Just like the way our city is expanding and going through metamorphosis, we are also growing into a different individuals. Each time we leave, there’s a part of ourselves that pervades each time we return and eventually, we make peace with that. We appreciate it and feel grateful about the fact that in a world full of chaos and changes happening continuously, there is a small, quiet part of us that cannot be conquered. We should celebrate the growth of our city and be glad to witness it personally. After years and years of roaming and exploring ourselves, we will finally be glad to “come home” and call it our place of solace.
Quote of the day: ““Do good, live in the most positive and joyful way possible every day.” ―