So, the disclaimer even before you read this is:
– I love Running!
– I love Marathons ( did the 7kms Mumbai one 3 years in a row)
– Vivek Singh of Procam (organiser) is a good family friend
Now, to a broader discussion:
The Mumbai Marathon is a DNA changer for Mumbai.
The 1st Marathon was really special:
– It proved that entrepreneurs could dream BIG and pull it off.
– Citizens and governnments (Indian that too) could actually work together to pull something off that was so amazingly well organized.
– Mumbaikar’s – who can barely wait for a minute on a red light gave up driving for almost half a day – so we are capable of sacrificing what is really precious to us for a larger good.
– Just the positivity and energy and affection that I experienced on my first run overwehelmed me. The navy band playing at the Flora Fountain junction, the crowds whistling and encouraging on every corner and all of classic old south mumbai families at Marine drive smiling and cheering. I have goosebumps writing this.
I SEE A MODERN DAY KUMBH MELA HERE
(picture credit – Indiafascinates.com)
I feel that the Marathon is the modern day Khumbh Mela.
– A gathering of stars and followers (funnily near the sea)
– A demonstration of purpose (check out the number of ‘CAUSES’ people ran for)
– An ever increasing adoption of the practice year after year – its not a flash in the pan.
India needs many many more such ‘Marathons’. Not just the ones that involve running, but of Enterprise, of Sports, of Culture, of just the spirit of DOING SOMETHING!
I just believe that we need to CELEBRATE ENTERPRISE and get not a few poilticians and businessmen huddled in 1 lac Rupee suits on stage, but the masses who can understand what the real benefit business and trade really is…
Rather than suspecting ‘business’ as a dark side of life, we need to view Entrepreneurs as Sadhus… that all of India should be respecting….and organize meet and greets between Entrepreneurs and the public at large like the Kumbh…so that they are motivated and driven to achieve modern day Nirvana – a la Economic Freedom.
On a more Social side, why cant we get a Cleanliness Marathon or a Health Marathon or a Drive Safe Marathon organized? And make it the Modern day Kumbh Mela….
Not one soul in South Mumbai ever regrets the Marathon. Be it even the taxi driver or the hand cart puller who really is the most financially impacted.
Because its rare to have so many Indians all feeling good about something at the same time!!
Lets just repeat this in newer avatars…
16th Jaunuary 2010