After being in Bombay for the last six days, there are some observations that I have made:
- The gap between rich and poor is enormous – it can be seen in everyday life from people living on the streets to one of the richest man in the world building a multi-storey home complete with a ballroom floor and helipad in the roof
- Anything can happen in India – such as a man riding a white horse down a busy street and totally owning it
- Tele-communication is very fast in this country – a lot can happen with just a phone call
- The cost of living has to be compared in the local currency rather than converting it back to our currency because it has to be relative to what it’s worth in India. For example, a top can cost 300 rupees which is around $6. To us, that’s not a lot to us but in reality, it’s probably only worth 150 rupees. Knowing market value is an important piece of knowledge
- Getting sick in India is not fun. I got something like the 24 hour flu/food poisoning symptoms and it felt horrible; luckily it was after the wedding festivities. I’m very grateful for having a friend who knows what to do when someone falls ill. My sickness was most likely a result of exhaustion, eating a lot of street food and not staying hydrated enough. With a lot rest and sweating out the fever, I eventually ate a little bit. I was given some herbal medicine, peppermint and mint tablet, glucose water and harjmola (a candy that helps me to suppress nausea), which in the end made me feel a whole lot better.
- People have huge appetites here. We would meet up with friends after work at 6 and we would go for a “snack” but in meal portions, walk around and then go for dinner at 9pm, eat a full, meal and then walk to get dessert. Insane amount of food that I would never imagined eating, especially so late at night
- Working is a way life. Many people will leave their homes for work at 6am and don’t return until 7-8pm. Then when they get home, dinner still needs to be made and then possibly more reviewing of work and then bed. Work-life balance doesn’t exist here. You’re expected to pick up your phone and check emails when on vacation as well as respond to them
- Street food!!!!! Keep cannot imagine why any city would limit the varieties and availability of street food because what I’ve had in Bombay was amazing!! Pani puri is a little puff ball filled with lentils chutney and mint water – one of my favourite foods of all time. Vada paved which is bread stuffed with deep fried potato patty with red and green chutney – had this at a street stall that was delicious. Kareem’s was a street side restaurant. That served great tandoori food. Paneer, tandoori mushrooms, chicken, raita, dal and a Thumbs Up (similar to Coca-Cola). The food is worth the wait
- Shopping – one of my loves of life. Both street shopping and showroom shopping (going to the actual brand’s store) is heaven!!! The amount of variety plus low cost is bound to put you over budget – that is if you had one to begin with 🙂 We’re shipping some items back with my friend’s cousin so that we have more room to shop in Delhi
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about Bombay because Delhi is our next stop. More adventures to follow!