A day in the life of Mohammed Muslim. Evening beat to Masjid
Cinematographer: Shaina Anand
Duration: 00:46:29; Aspect Ratio: 1.778:1; Hue: 31.951; Saturation: 0.030; Lightness: 0.394; Volume: 0.067; Cuts per Minute: 13.488; Words per Minute: 7.701
Summary: Mohammed Muslim lives in Colaba and moves around on his bicycle delivering bread and plastic bags. His beat stretches from Navy Nagar, the southern most tip of Bombay, to Mohammed Ali road and Dongri. We spent a day with him documenting his daily movement patterns. Here we follow him on his evening beat. He begins in Colaba, heads to Sassoon bakery and then decides to head towards Masjid Bundar via Mint Road, and P'Dmello road.
Colaba Post Office
Mohammed's nephew fetches the cycle, we ask him to loop around shangrilla building and get out of the other gate.
He cycles around the compound behind shangrilla building. we see the arabian sea, the southern most part of the eastern coast of the narrow isle of Bombay. Naval base in the background.
He gets straight onto the road, Defence area up ahead. Mohammed is waiting for him. bus wipes.
-Will they let us inside with the cycle?
-they will, ill tell them.
- we just want to go via here, to shangrilla, aroras house.
-lets go straight and out of that gate.
a friend in jest to nephew as he passes by
- hey, you could have worn some better clothes!
Colaba Post Office
Im taking the bread from the shop, ok?
- yes, were coming.
- should i go there an take bread from the bakery? Ill take pav bread from here.
_Theres a bakery in Sasoon docks. we'll pick up some bread from the sasoon bakery.
- there is a bakery in Sasoon docks?
come, we go from here.
we see a sign on the dairy that says Punjabi Paneer. Also see the hutch shop. (hutch does not exist anymore, has been bought over by vodafone.)A travel agent shop: the traveller and another small shop also selling sims. Trump and MOTS. (mobile on the spot-BPL)Mohammed takes the cycle from his nephew. he walks ahead to a general store. He consults us on what to do next. this is because Mohammed is actually on his way to Masjid Bundar to pick up his wholesale quoat of plastic bags. but plastic bags(irrespective of microns and thickness) are 'supposedly' banned in Mumbai.So we try to take some 'bread' sales shots for the benefit of the short film in the making which is not about bread or plastic bags, but about Mohammed's general movement patterns.
cycling through colaba. the camera is mounted with bungee cord on another bicycle. mohamed is in constant conversation with us, directing us. a biker with a pillion rider carrying a huge board of ply-wood. cars passing. Mohammed uses his horn hnow, so does scot. busses pass up bu. colaba highrises inthe backgrounds. scot honks a lot. ply-wood overtakes us.
Mohammed stops at the Sasoon dock entrance gate. takes his cycle in. we wait outside.
- you stay in front, right. yes go ahead.
-keep going straight.
-Scot's cycle bell rings a lot.
-take a left her now...right here...the bakery is over here.
-you will wait here...
He buys bread at the bakery.
Also a restricted area. Close up of a sign saying so. Pan to Mohammed who exits. Bus wipe. Bus honk.
Sassoon dock will be declared as "RESTRICTED AREA' very shortly. All concerned societies/organisations/persons shall take a note. Entry in the Sassoon dock will be permitted only to the authorised permit/identity card holders.
all concerned societies/organisations/ are requested to keep ready detailed information of their related persons for handing over the same to the.....
Mohammed- Now well take the Cuffe Parade Road. I bought the pav and i also bought the bread. Now lets go from fountain ahead.
- take a turn and then go straight.
-hey is this camera on or off (passer by)
-stay on the side, on the corner. (not in the middle of the road!!...He tells young Scot)
-get out from that side.
we pass by on the bike. tell scot to not speed so much, Mohamed might have a hard time catching up. usual traffic. pass a Birdy's deli chain. Mohammed directs us. We take a turn. a roundabout. a bus and a cab.
cabs overtake, bus trundles, Mohammed cruises. Trucks, a police van, goods truck.
Mohammed stops. We've paused for a moment. back on again. scot on the bike with camera, Mohammed Bhai on his bicycle giving us directions and us on the bike keeping pace. Mohammed mounts his bicycle. Koel in the background. (cuckoo,
goods trucks, pedestrians, road signs.
we used one of Mohamed Bhais plasic sacks to cover our camera and and an errant thread is flying into frame now. dancing here and there in the wind. bus overtakes, were pushed into corner. Mohammed tells us to speed up. bus lags now. man limps. traffic light on green. bus behind Mohammed now. signal opens. Mohammed mounts his bike. we are now in Cuffe Parade. Skyrise in background. bus overtakes. a tourist bus passes. another bus.
-the right light should come on when its recording, right?
-lets go mohammed bhai.
-cuckoo in the background. big truck in the background. (audio)
-speed up now. stay on the side.
-bus heaves a sigh.
Mohammed directs us. huge crossing.
Mohammed notices that the red light is off camera has stopped recording.
Mohammed has noticed that the camera is not recording. were rolling again now...he mounts his bicycle. we are heading down the road between Cuffe Parade and Regal. Another bicycle overtakes. trucks. Heritage buildings, Wodehouse church, Zebra crossing, YMCA, tempo rickshaw overtakes, pista green, stops in the middle of the road. We pass Shahakari Bhandar, Citibank, crafts of India, Mohammed dismounts. gives us directions. Mounts the cycle again, pass Regal cinema, traffic merges, honking, Regal in the distance, buses stop, Mohammed heading towards Kalaghoda. Prince of Wales museum on the left, Sassoon Library on the right, riding close to the divider. the errant string is back again. buses on the left lane, we squeeze into the right lane. Jehangir art gallery in left background.
-should we go straight from Lions gate?
- go absolutely straight from here...this middle road.
-is there a turn up ahead...?
Divider, those strange ugly brown potted planters without any plants introduced into the city during shivsena rule. (please tag 'planters' when you spot them in pad.ma )Zebra crossing. We turn left into the lane, JN heredia Marg,
JN Heredia Marg
ambient itinerant conversation in Marathi.
Mohammed delivers bread to a regular client/customer. Small stall which runs a phone booth as well. he has a short conversation, takes ten rupees for his bread.
JN Heredia Marg
Army Navy building in the background. Mohammed cycles on. Pass old buildings. Madras cafe, Avan house, buildings draped in green tarpaulin being renovated. man on a roof, Krishna bank, construction sounds, turn onto mint road.
Pass Mint or right, high wall pf mint, Reserve Bank of India (RBI building).we stop for a moment at the traffic light.
-keep going straight, baba.
bicycle overtakes, we near Horniman circle -the first curve visible to our right. Mohammed points up ahead.
Asiatic Library (old Town Hall on our left) Mohammed cycles on, does a loop around Horniman circle. The beautiful curved buildings. Gas cylinders on a truck, Dena bank, hawkers, the old Banyan tree near the Horniman circle garden. the faces on the arcades of each building. Mohammed is back by the town hall, a bus crushes us into the corner.
Now we see the BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange) in the background, shortly thereafter, the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) building which says visible for a while. Rush hour is nearing. A disabled Man walks by. Now traffic is at a standstill, Mohammed still has some mobility.
Now onto shady Mint road. traffic thickens.
Man behind Mohammed on bike has face covered with a handkerchief. signals opens. Cop on the street. We pass the GPO (General Post Office, back entrance). we are heading onto P'Dmello Road, the eastern most arterial road, parallel to the dockyard. People. Continuous slums and shanties on our right. Life and trade pass us by. people are our on charpoys, (beds) andchairs. the dockyard walls up to our right. kids plays a drum, garbage on street. People sleeping on charpoy, kids playing, man on wheelchair, handcarts on street and on the side in the slums. families hang out, talking, fires burning, food cooking. more handcarts. man pulls our his bed. young girls.
P D'mello Road
Now we are paralledl to Mohamad bhai. We see more houses, endless row of shanties and slums. More charpoys and beds out on the rof, densely populated, small stalls, a bus stop, some abandoned homes, lots of blue tarpaulin, families, handcarts, cars in the right lane.
We turn left and head up carnac bridge. its a steepish upslope. People are sleeping on the wall of the bridge.
Mohammed pedels hard up the slope.
Women squatting, more handcarts parked. labourers pushing handcarts with pipes and goods.
P D'mello Road
_take a right from there, the road is under construction, or normally we would go straight Take a right now.
- what is 'soja' he keeps saying soja.
We are heading into one of the densest parts of the city.
Keshavji Naik Road
Mohammed mounts his bike, handcarts pass up by laded with goods,coolies carry goods, trucks parked with goods. Mohammed dismounts and walks briskly , a coolie overtakes him.
Keshavji Naik Road
Keshavji Naik Road
Yusuf Meharal Road
dense. Mohammed walks with his bicycle trucks lined up on either side. Haath gaadis, coolies carrying bales and parcels. He jogs a bit with his cycle. cab honks. traffic at a standstill. we lose Mohammed. haathgaadi walla in foreground. Mohammed emerges, walks on. trucks pass by, man on cell phone, goods on carts, more tucks,pedestrians. A mosque in background, camera bounces, the lane clears a bit, building with gunny and blue tarpaulin and scaffolding or our right. we come out of the lane and head towards Yusuf Meherali Road. Food stuff sold in shops on our right, pedestrians. mobility. Mumbai moves.