Relocating to another city in search of greater exposure and better opportunities have become a fad among Millennials and Gen Z. Migrating to another city; a much-awaited escape from all the “naatukaar enthu parayum” and a million other uninvited opinions that tag along with your every action, surely sounds thrilling AF. But stepping out of your safe haven, letting go of Amma’s super delicious food and the comfort of your home can be one of the most testing things to do. As another batch of freshly baked ‘twelthies’ come out of their ovens, ready to take off, let’s hear from a few senior migratory birds about their experiences in different cities away from their homes. A tale of two cities!
Finding a second home
The feeling of finding comfort in a completely strange city, the absolute joy in unexpected friendships is surely ecstatic. It might take some time to get accustomed to the new ways and culture of another place, but surely, we all end up finding our second homes.
“There is always a sense of belongingness I feel over here. I am positive that someone or the other would be there to back me up in an unpleasant situation. Most importantly, I feel secure,” says an anonymous from Kochi who has surely found his safe haven in Mumbai. When asked about what he missed most about his hometown, his answer was rather predictable.
“I miss the greenery and the coconut trees! Most of us might take this aspect of our place for granted but trust me, once you get a sniff of air from a polluted, big city like Mumbai, you would start appreciating your ‘harithaaba and pachappu’ a little more “
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East or West, Amma’s food is the best !
The aroma of freshly cooked rice, sambar, moru curry, a dash of pickle and a piece of pappadam – Uff, we can feel our taste buds take a trip to paradise, can’t we?
Surely one won’t be surprised if a Malayali restaurant opens up in the Antarctic. We are everywhere, aren’t we? We surely are the next big thing after globalisation, spreading across every inch of the globe. So whenever you miss the Malayali taste in a foreign city, in most situations, tracking down a Malayali hotel wouldn’t be much of a problem. But nothing can beat Amma’s authentic recipes, can it?
“I always crave Amma’s food. Even when I had the best meals out there, I wished I had a taste of her meal. Maybe it wasn’t always about the taste,“ Aria from Delhi says.
But of course, exploring different cuisines are never boring. “I can never get enough of the street side food and chaat in Delhi. The golgappaas hit different” says anonymous.
Also read: Sensory Pleasures In A Malayali Household
All That Glitters is not gold
Relocating to another city might not always be as fancy as it seems. Movies, TV series and social media have surely given us a false romanticised idea of the outside world, which unfortunately also has its dark sides. Being adventurous as an alien might not always be the best way to fulfil our ‘we only live once’ impulsive decisions. Some experiences you might come across in such places can be unforgettable and life-changing.
(Trigger Warning: Mention of Suicide)
Once while heading back home from college, a lady had committed suicide by jumping in front of the metro I was in. As I witnessed the whole incident unfold in front of me, a part of me was scarred with that memory,” says anonymous.
Life sure isn’t a bed of roses. But our fears should never hinder us from seeing the bigger world outside. These doors are the gateway to learning new experiences you will encounter down the lane. It sure is a beautiful world with so much to see and so much to learn.
Discovering a new me
When asked about how living in a different city changed them as individuals, many of them reflected upon how independent they had become. Some of them even found new interests that unleashed different sides of themselves. A new environment, a new beginning, seemed like the perfect start for them to hop on this new phase of life that has so much in store for them.
Moving out of your comfort zones, saying goodbye to the city you grew up in, reconstructing the whole definition of a home might sound uncertain. But ahead of all these doubts and insecurities, lies a whole new experience that you will never achieve without getting out of your shell. All these experiences, good and bad, will definitely help you find yourself. If you are still unsure, remember this tagline of that famous Mountain Dew ad “Dar ke aage, jeet hain”!
This is a tale of two cities experienced by some students who’ve left the comforts of their own homes to find their true selves. If you have gone through similar experiences, let us know in the comments below.