I am back. Back with a huge reality check. It's pointless to say how lucky we are that we live in Mumbai blah blah. The point is not to mull over the given. The point is to explore and live with the other side of the story. There is always a dark other side - sometimes obvious, sometimes clothed in ironical humour.
The point of being a journalist is to see the other side. Numerous times through the two days I came close to tears. Nothing can make you want to cry than the sight of a child playing with somebody's discarded wooden toy as if it was a Barbie. There is no chance of that child ever knowing or experiencing the thrill of owning a Barbie. It tears your heart when so little can make someone so happy. At a time when you're in the prime of your life and seeking newer avenues in the quest for professional and personal excellence, it stops you in your tracks to know that for somebody out there, there is no avenue and there is no prime of life.
All there is, is hope and a huge measure of enforced poverty. This is how we are progressing in the 21st century...with the rich getting even richer and the poor not moving beyond the confines of their homes because there is nowhere to go.
Little wonder that terrorism is born everyday. There's always a reason for even the basest of acts - depriving someone of their resources to gain something for yourself, is one of them.
The stories will appear in serialised form. Look out for each in the space above this one.