From the moment you arrive, you know you are in India. There is no place else on earth that has this big a mixture of smells, sounds and colors. It instantly overwhelms you. I also believe that you either instantly fall in love or hate it. Will you see abject poverty? Yes! Will you see filth like you didn’t think could exist in this day and age? Yes! You will also see some of the most kind, beautiful and resourceful people on the planet. You will get an extravagant treat for the eyes, ears and palate.
From the moment you arrive, the first thing you will notice is there are a lot of people. A lot of traffic. A buzz of activity that makes a bee hive seem spacious and quiet.
But somehow it all works. It is like the world’s craziest choreographed dance. I lost count of how many entire families I saw precariously balanced on a tiny scooter. It all seemed like controlled chaos. It was all very beautiful and exciting to me.
You could spend a lifetime walking around these amazing streets. You have never seen so much color. You have never smelled so many enticing scents. Everything is turned up to volume 11!
At the time the Rupee was at 50 to 1 with the American Dollar. Everything I ate, drank and purchased seemed impossibly cheap. I had no idea what half what I was eating was. I loved finding out.
I was most amazed with the sheer organization that was coming out of the chaos. Open air laundries with hundreds of thousands of items that looked alike. Food delivery to hundreds of thousands of office workers that is picked up at their homes and delivered to their offices at a precise time. Work being done with tools and machines from long before I was born. All of it was better than any Discovery Channel show you could ever see.
Everything you have heard about cows being hands off is true. I saw countless cows wandering thru traffic and even joining us at the beach. We rented a spacious houseboat for a day and even went thru a tour of Gandhi’s Bombay residence. I plan on returning as soon as I can and my next trip will be for much, much longer.