The old-world charm of neighbourhoods that celebrated the spirit of oneness has vanished ever since we started connecting more on the web than in real life. Even the kids today no longer have a neighbourhood best friend like most of us had while growing up. Growing up, the most fascinating part of our days were outside our homes, in our neighbourhoods. Here are few things that are not a part of our neighbourhoods and will hit you with a dose of neighbourhood nostalgia.
That restaurant in the nook
Whether it was a Cuppa coffee or the nukkad wali chai, every neighbourhood had a restaurant that knew your tastes and preferences very well. A visit to this restaurant was more like going home than going out. Even if it was a small restaurant just around the corner you always felt like you received special treatment every time you walked inside. After all, a hot meal or a delicious beverage was always served with a warm smile and a hearty conversation with the owner.
The neighbourhood newspaper stall
Though some of us still have the newspaper boy delivering the print version of the world happenings, the neighbourhood newspaper stall was more than just a place to buy newspapers. This stall owner was probably the first friend everyone made in the neighbourhood and everyone who purchased newspaper at the same stall had an unspoken bonding. Nowadays, we seldom find such spaces where we feel connected and yet have the necessary distance to immerse ourselves in any other activities like reading a newspaper. These newspaper stalls are no longer the first-morning sight we see and with these stalls gone our charming neighbourhoods also vanished leaving behind a breeze of nostalgia.
In a world of Zomato and Swiggy, we have forgotten the cheerful loud calls of the ice-cream man. Summer afternoons used to be always planned around this person’s schedule. The ice-cream man was probably everyone’s favourite adult while growing up. Summers were incomplete without that exciting run to the ice-cream man’s box that was synonymous with Pandora’s Box for most of us. Now that we have access to exotic frozen flavours at the tip of our fingers we realize that that the real magic was hidden in the trips to the ice-cream man’s cart and selecting our favourite flavours along with our neighbourhood pals. Also, who could forget the bitter-sweet struggle we all had to go through to ask for these few cents from our parents to buy these frozen treats?
The neighbourhood grocery store
The Mama’s store also the neighbourhood grocery store where you’d get everything was the most important part of the daily grind for everyone. People in the neighbourhood would walk in and out of the store and used to buy things they needed sometimes even on credit. The friendly banter while filling our grocery bags was an occasional or daily ritual for everyone in the neighbourhood. Even the shopkeeper’s knew everyone’s preferences. Though there weren’t gazillion brand options for every household item like we have today, this neighbourhood mama store always catered to all our needs perfectly. Hence, the small simple shop served us more personal touch along with our groceries than our supermarkets and malls could ever do.
Whether or not we had a proper playground all of us had a particular spot in the neighbourhood that turned into our playing ground. Fancy rides and slides were not a thing in the neighbourhood’s of the past. However, most of us always had this particular corner in the neighbourhood that served as a playground, Christmas party place or just a hangout spot where we grew up. Our neighbourhoods are certainly posher than they used to be but they lack these nostalgic playing corners.
Last but definitely not the least, the kind of bonding neighbourhoods shared has vanished completely. The impromptu evening tea parties and festive visits at each other’s places sound like a thing of the last era. We have grown so accustomed to not knowing our neighbours that we completely forget about the times when bonding with your neighbours was more of a lifestyle than an exception. In a world, that is hyper-connected we forget to greet people who stay around us.
If there’s anything we would time travel for then it’s our neighborhoods. Gone are the times when neighbors were just an extended family and not a bunch of strangers. At Nebory, we are trying to bring back this spirit of connectedness and belonging back to our neighborhoods. By connecting you with your neighbors, we are striving to make your world a little better.