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Adventure before dementia

Mumbai

INDIA | Friday, 8 March 2019 | Views [107] | Comments [5]

Where to start with Mumbai! The initial feeling is pretty overwhelming, a total assault on the senses. It's noisy with the traffic and the continuous beeping of horns, you don't know where to look first as everything is so different, and the smells range from the delicious aroma of food, the exotic smell of incense and the fragrant temple flowers. It initially feels chaotic and totally out of control but after a few hours of adjustment and an open mind it is amazing. I am completely won over by Mumbai. We have had a fantastic few days exploring. I don't think Mumbai must be on the list of many European tourists as we have been the only non-indian people nearly everywhere we have been. To the extent that some of the Indian people want their photographs taken with us! #feelingfamous (I only write this because social media is huge here and there are lots of hashtags!)

 The food has been great. The very first meal was the best Indian food I have ever eaten and everything since has exceeded expectations. We have eaten in a range of food establishment from the ridiculously inexpensive to the very reasonable and all have been great. Also managed to track down a very cool bar frequented by the young Mumbai hipsters. The contrast in wealth is stark. To the point if you walk around after dark the pavements are lined with people asleep next to the stalls they run during the day or outside the shops they work in. They are asleep in taxis, wagons, buses, diggers, pretty much anywhere or in anything. In complete contrast the world's first billion dollar house is in Mumbai and the 'Beverley hills' of Mumbai is very exclusive. Mumbai is the home of the bollywood film industry and is one of the richest citys in the world.

 So what have we been up to? We have been on a bike tour. Yes, a bike tour. If you could see the madness of the traffic you would be aghast. Thankfully we survived crossing six lanes of traffic, vehicles travelling in the wrong direction, men pushing hand carts, absolutely crazy taxi drivers, the hundreds of mopeds, the people walking in the road, other cyclists and the occasional cow! Avoiding the cows was the most important as cows are sacred and there would be uproar if you hurt a cow. On the tour we went to a cow sanctuary in the centre of the city. It was partly religious and partly commercial. Hindu people (and us) buy food to feed the cows to be blessed. The cows are also milked for commercial income. Win, win really. I think that is how we survived our bike tour so I'm not going to knock it!! Strangely enough there were three cows sleeping outside our hotel on our last night in Mumbai. If you could see our hotel in the old colonial area of Mumbai you would appreciate how out of place they look! I could hear them mooing as I went to sleep. I took it as a good sign. We also visited a hindu temple, a fruit market, the fishing village, marine drive and some historic sites. All great but not worth as much blog space as the cows! We don't have many photos from any of this because you weren't allowed to take any for various reasons, so you'll just have to believe me!

 

Also during our stay we took a boat trip out to elephant island to visit some historic hindu cave temples which was impressive. We went on a food tour in central Mumbai which was interesting and very tasty. This also included a cow. Cows get to go on tour of the city for those people that can’t make it to the sanctuary! For 5p you can feed the cow (which we did), contribute to the income of the cows guardian (a poor lady) and be blessed. Win, win,win. After all the food and blessings we walked the very nice promenade of marine drive to chowpatty beach and up Malabar hill to the parks and leafy suburbs. We took a couple of taxi rides in Mumbai which are very cheap but exceptionally hair raising. You really need to be blind folded before you get in the car!! Thank goodness we aren't driving ourselves anywhere!! I am sat in Mumbai airport now waiting for an internal flight to our next destination, Aurangabad. Mumbai has exceeded all expectations. The temperature is very pleasant as well, about 28C and sunny. Bye for now. Love Dawn and Mark

Comments

1

Hiya! Sounds like you’re having a fab trip. Mark looks like he is seriously focused on that curry in the pic. How are the beers, nice and cheap? Can’t believe you braved a bike ride. That’s MTBers of the year for 2019 sorted! Take care & keep minding the cows!! X

  Claire Bridge Mar 9, 2019 7:55 PM

2

hi, that was certainly an epic blog. When you said there were hardly any photos I expected one or two but was surprised by 21 which is more than ever, (I checked back over years) They all look good but why no action shots of the leisurely bike ride in the quiet city. Keep safe. Dad. XXX

  Peter Wilson Mar 10, 2019 10:50 PM

3

Nice to hear from you both. I meant there were hardly any photos from the bike tour. We were too busy surviving to take any photos! Also we weren't allowed to take photos at any sacred sites including the cow sanctuary and temples. It would have been great to be wearing a go-pro (head camera) for the bike ride, you'd have got a good idea of how crazy the roads are then. We are trying to be safe. The people we have meet so far have been very, very nice and kind. Love to all, Dawn x

  dawnandmark Mar 10, 2019 11:10 PM

4

Great to hear from you both, your bike rides around altham will never be the same Linda xx

  Linda Mar 12, 2019 7:11 AM

5

Can’t believe you braved that on a bike ! Hope you had your helmets on . Mark is obviously in food heaven !

  Claire Mar 19, 2019 6:28 PM

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