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When I was growing up, before the arrival of Maruti 800, most middle-class homes owned a scooter, preferably a Vespa. Lately, I haven't seen a pure-blooded scooter in Gurgaon. Of course, the "scooty", the undernourished variant driven by delivery boys and women ferrying kids is common. All too often, it lurches mindlessly from the wrong side of the road, but is hardly a match for the rotund yet robust Vespa. Or the Lambretta.
Barring those who were young and single, we used to visit the railway station to receive almost everyone. In many ways, our presence at the railway platform was a sign of welcome, an affirmation that the guests were wanted. Much as I hate visiting dirty crowded railway stations today, I remember my childhood station visits with some degree of nostalgia.