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When I got onto the train at Borivali, I had one thought running at the back of mind - I'm going to a village with cows and dung everywhere. When I got here, it was silent and soft and sober. I was in an unfamiliar zone because I was used to travelling in crowded trains and people all around wherever you go. So frankly, the first few days of Vadodara were awkward.
But all of it has changed for the better - I found peace here - this peace of mind was missing in Bombay. It has given me the space and time to think and understand who I am - it has helped me work both physically and mentally and prepare myself for various kinds of challenges. After dinner, I go for a walk. It's like the most important time of the day for me and here the air is clean; no honking of cars or for that matter, no cows and dung on the streets. I can sleep for 8 hours with no traffic noise to disturb me. The ambience is great. The people
are awesome - far more decent and welleducated. It's safe on the roads - you can go for walks and drives late at night without the fear of getting mugged or hassled in any way. There's a lot of buzz during the day - it acts like any metro during the day and at night, it's relatively quieter. So it has both flavours - those of a big city and those of a small town.
There are lots of hotels and joints so every Sunday you can enjoy a different variety of food - Punjabi, Gujarati, Mughlai, Kathiavadi - it's all there. I once tasted ten different kinds of Pani Puri, Vada Pav - I'm from Bombay and my perception about these has totally changed.
My first choice will always be Mumbai no matter where I am, but that aside, Vadodara wins hands-down. I've been to a lot of places but there's just something about this city that keeps pulling you back.
Rohan Joijode
Executive-Quality Management,
L&T Power
A fast-talking Mumbaikar; didn't want to come to Vadodara at all. Now, the city is amongst one of his top preference as the perfect place to settle down.