I'll write whatever I want, dammit

Sunset at the Beach

To escape the heat, and for some Hindu thing that I don’t understand. people come down to the beach every evening to watch the sunset. It is nice, but would be better if there wasn’t so much smog here.

The fishermen live in tent slums right next to their boats:
This is a Hindu shrine. The dogs live there and people bring food for them:
Fishermens’ families relaxing on a garbage heap (yes, that is sewage in the water):
Another view of the doggy shrine:
People gathering around a raw sewage outlet for some reason:

Look what I almost stepped on

So Kellen and i went to an expat bar last night for some dinner and beer. We had a good time. Lots of Aussies and Brits, not so many Americans.

Afterward, we were surprised that all the shops and vendors had shut down, it was only about 9:30.
We were wandering down the sidewalk, and came across this:
No adults in sight...

There was a little carryout shop that was still open, so we got them some food:
That’s all for now.

Mumbai - First Impressions

Sorry about the lack of pictures. Between working and sleeping, I haven’t taken a single one yet. I will take some soon...

We have excellent accommodations at the 5-star
Oberoi Hotel. The service here is a little over the top for my taste (I hate being pampered), but everyone else on the team seems to like it. They are always in your face asking what they can do for you, they are not allowed to talk to you conversationally, and they refuse tips. I am surrounded here by disgusting rich people, and I am looking forward to spending more time in less affluent neighborhoods, if only to escape the filthy bastards. I swear I get more Marxist every day.

There is futbol and Bollywood on the TV 24/7. I even got to see my beloved
Луч Енергиа last night! ...they lost, of course.

We are working long hours and I am looking forward to the weekend. This evening, we took a cab to a seedy little neighborhood and had some really good Chinese food. I think I am the only one in our group that likes Indian food, so I might need to head out by myself one evening. People see you and harass you and try to get you into their shops. You can get anything here cheap - suits, Rolexes, drugs, women (or so they say...). Cab drivers fight over you and try to run over each other. Excellent!

Homeless people are everywhere. They sleep in storefronts, and every morning the shopkeepers chase them off with clubs - more invigorating than coffee, I would assume. Beggars work in teams. If you give money to one, a couple dozen others appear out of nowhere. It’s sad, but it is best to ignore them. They pay “rent” to beg on good corners and any money they get goes to the “corner boss” anyway.

There are tiny little death-trap cabs everywhere, and they cost very little - about 80 cents to go 5 miles. It’s a real adventure, and we use them often. Mumbai has the worst traffic I have ever seen and drivers are angry and aggressive. Since the police are corrupt and fairly nonexistent, you can literally run over people and get away with it. The trains have no doors and people are hanging off them. We were told that 15 - 20 people die each day riding on the trains. I think I’ll stay away from that. The hospitals are corrupt too, and they would rather rob you and let you die than try to help you. We have been given a number for a reputable doctor in case we might need one.

It’s hot and steamy every day, which is excellent. People on the street are friendly and helpful, and they love talking to foreigners.

I really like this place.

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