The Powai Proximity Problem

I live in Ghatkopar and its about 35 bucks away from Powai. And all the places that I typically hang out at - Starbucks, LPQ, Mohini etc. And places like Harry's that I like to go but they frown when I go in chappals and shorts.

So since I've moved to GK West (as VG calls it), I try and not go anywhere else but Powai. For shopping, for eating out, for fun, for parties, for running errands, for working, for doctors and for anything else that a 35-year may have to do.

Except office, that is about 150 bucks (and an hour) away from GK. And places that I cant avoid the travel to - client meetings, my homoepath in Mahim, airport etc. When I do have to travel to these places, I ensure that I leave GK by 7 AM and am on the way back by 4 PM. Thats how you avoid traffic in Mumbai. There is no other way. And there is no worse way to waste life.

So, when I have to meet people, I "request" them to come over to Powai. Unless they really really really can't make it and I really really really want to meet them. Or unless I am already at work and they could meet in en route to GK.

But then life is not that simple. There are tons of issues with it. Here's top three that I can document.

A. Monotony 
Most of my friends want hang out at newer places, experience new things, taste new tastes, go to the newest fancy thing in the town. For me, all these are merely incidental. The idea is to catch up with friends and we can do that at a Starbucks or at one of the numerous places around Powai. Or even a drive for that matter.

However, I am told that the idea is to have a good time and good time is a combination of good food, good music, good shared activity and good conversations. There are varying degrees of contribution of each factor. For me, the conversation and activity contribute 50% each. Food and music is immaterial. So, at Powai, I we can find any activity that we may want to indulge in, at any budget (which often is not a challenge as most of my friends are richer than me) and almost all cuisines. So, I dont see the need to step out.

I understand that for people other things could have varying percentages. And I ok with it but I dont understand why would the group travel to Bandra (about 40 minutes and 200 bucks) to just eat a salad and go back to their respective places. Sum total of all hours wasted in all this travel is criminal. And on top of that, our time is severely limited.

B. Limited contact with others 
As I try and build AWSL and C4E, I realise that human connections are super important if you want to get ahead in life. So this is something that I anyway suck at. I am not an extrovert and I suck at sucking up. I am generally nice to people but I cant be overtly praiseful. My EQ is questionable and my empathy for others borders on the ones that sociopaths have.

I am working on changing this. Not tough if you ask me. However most people dont operate at the super-rational level that I am trying to achieve. And thus it gets tough to call them to Powai all the time. Or meet them at 4 at Saki Naka. Or at 3 at Andheri.

The other issue is that other constructs that allow you to mingle with people require fake camaraderie. And that requires sessions of alcohol, smokes, drugs and other such things. The only thing that I abuse is Coke. I thus get stuck with it as well.

One way to resolve this is by considering new contacts as work. And then, just like I dont question the need to go to work, I probably wont question the need to go to meet people. Lemme give this a shot in H2-2017.

The other way is to do such brilliant work that they really really really want to meet you. And travel to where you are. This is something that I can work on, starting NOW! 

C. Old age
As you grow old, you get set in your ways. You develop strong opinions about things and places and people. And worse of them all, you develop opinions of self <this entire blog, this particular post, the thoughts and all that are a manifestation of my opinion of myself - which is pretty huge>.

This opinion of self (aka ego) needs to get broken soon and fast. And that can happen when you expose yourself to new things, new ideas, new people and such. And all the new things, ideas, people dont really hang out in Powai. The composition of people at Powai is not a representative of what we have in Mumbai / MH / India or the world. And it is definitely not representative of the kind of people I want to hang out with.

And who are these people that I want to hang out with? Entrepreneurs. Startup folks. Athletes. Rich people. I want to hang out with people who create new things, solve real problems and as they say, move the human race forward.

Assuming that they would want to hang out with me!

Brings me to a rant. I am driven by the lust to improve myself. In everything I do. I want to be healthier, richer, happier. I want to push my limits. I want to climb the Everest! I want to do a lot of things. And I want to do all those things well. And for that I need a certain kind of environment (not that people without that environment dont do things well - I am programmed to do it like that) and leave Powai (or Mumbai for that matter), I cant seem to find the same. Its funny because we live in the world full of information and connecting with a Bill Gates is as easy as sending him an email - his email address is in public domain. And yet I cant seem to find the kind of people I want to be around. 

And you know a funny thing? I am happy to get away from Powai for that.

Funny how the Powai Proximity solves itself! 

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