Most of us love a refreshing morning walk but have you ever considered a walk through our very own Kolkata- the cultural capital of India? We have been born in this city of joy and have lived our lives here. Yet there is much that we are not aware of about it, its cultural heritage and its history.
I always thought that I knew my city well till I came across a cultural walk organised by Mylestone Champs. Although primarily an outdoor activity for children, we adults too renewed our love for our magnificent city. The walk took us through the labyrinthine lanes of Kolkata of yore, through the initial Chinese settlements, through Blackburn lane, Tiretti Bazaar, Bow Barracks of the Anglo Indians, the Parsi Fire Temple, the history of the Portugese church, the Armenians and their contributions to the city and their beautiful church; and much more! The walk revealed the fact that there was much more to Kolkata than the Victoria Memorial and the Planetarium.
The city is a brew of inherited diversity of cultures which is depicted primarily through architecture, literature and food. The activity, targeted principally towards children and youngsters, spoke volumes as they tried to relate it to our cultural history. An early morning cup of refreshing tea at Metcalfe Street, watching rickshaw pullers curled up in blankets on the vehicle itself, sampling Chinese dumplings near Chattawalah galli– these were all completely new experiences for the generation of our children and I saw the wonder in their happy eyes.
Kolkata is unique and the walk was truly a passionate interlude.
The author Mr. Vivek Narayan is the Director of ESPPL