Weekend in India (End of Trip)

Wow… I am back from India (after almost 30 hours of travel)… I am exhausted.  I wished I was a better writer as well as photographer so that I could truly share the amazing things I saw and experienced… never the less I am going to share in my own unique weird way… and it will be a bit random and weird, but I promise interesting. (well at least I hope it will be interesting)

If you have not read my previous posts check out Post 1, Post 2, Post 3,  and Post 4

Before I dump all of the random pictures I have taken I want to publically thank all of the individuals I was able to meet… from the people I interviewed to the people I worked with… You are all some of the kindest people I have met and I was honored to be able to spend time with you.  I can honestly say that all of you made  what could have been a very busy, stressful, and overwhelming time into a very intersting and joyful experience…

SO… here goes some pictures.

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This picture shows an experience that kind of broke my heart.  This is Sunday morning and I went for a very early walk. (had to be in the office at 8 am)  I met this mother and her young daughter.  They slept in a near by field and they had gathered garbage to burn to keep warm.  The little girl followed me for almost half a mile asking  for money (I think since I couldn’t understand her).  I didn’t have any rupees (Indian money) so I gave her some American money…  she didn’t know what it was.   I was worried that she had walked so far away from her mother so I walked her back to her mom. I tried to explain that what I gave was money… (not sure if her mother ever understood).   I felt like I was letting them down.  I really wanted to make a difference.  I wanted to buy them some food and warm clothes but nothing was open.  I left them thinking I could come back and take them shopping.  I went back after work and even tried to find them the next day but I did not see them… I still think about these two and the struggles they must be facing.  (and my lost opportunity to truly show kindness and love)

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This photo was taken just in front of my hotel.   The first time I left my hotel in the morning I thought some building must have been on fire… but after taking some early morning walks I noticed many fires along the street.  (the smoke smell was from many small fires burning garbage).  These fires were often started by shop owners who were burning the garbage left in front  of their shops.
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This was on a “juice squeeze bottle”.  I love the ingredients.   “LOVE AND INGREDIENT BITS”…
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I found this sign in an elevator.   Rule 7 really caught my eye…   “Spitting is Prohibited”
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I guess “No Spitting” is a common “rule”.   I hate to admit this but I ran over and spit on the side walk next to the sign… (No one can tell me what to do!)
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Since I could no longer eat Indian food (previous post I mentioned that it smelt the same way coming out as going in… )  I lived off smoked salmon on toast for breakfast… (I love this).   Thanks to this helpful sign, the is “fish” vegetarian question has been answered.  You can make all the arguments you want about fish being vegetation… but it is “NON-VEG”
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This just confused me… I am not sure I want to find what ever this image means in any classifieds.
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Favorite “foodie” sign.   Chickens that are part human… strong arm wrestling chickens.
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I am not sure that the chickens you eat at this restaurant are “free-range”.  I saw this truck with chickens parked over night in front of the restaurant.  That next evening the truck was empty… hmm wonder what happened to them… I bet they took them for a small walk to stretch their legs.
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The last day while walking I noticed this temple (you can see it off in the distance)… darn it…  I wished I would have seen this earlier.   I would have tried to leave earlier and make it to this awesome place.
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Next to my hotel they were constructing a large new “building”.   Here is the temporary electrical…  I could reach up and touch wires (but I stopped myself… I do have some common sense).
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There was new construction everywhere and mostly large tall buildings.  These are located along the express way somewhere between Mumbai and Pune
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Hmm… Even I think there might be something wrong with this…  shouldn’t he have tied a red ribbon to the ladder? I think that is what you have to do if it extends past the vehicle…  I could be wrong since this is extending above not behind the vehicle… so maybe it is perfectly ok.
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The name of this drink… APPY FIZZ just made me happy.  I drank this and just kept the empty bottle in the room.   (Carbonated apple juice a lot like Apfelshorle but sweeter )
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The last night I did enjoy Indian food… actually the manager of the center I was working at called a restaurant and had them make some traditional Mumbai street food (for foreigners this is probably the only way to eat this kind of food without getting sick).  There were many examples of this awesome “street” food… The ones in this picture were my favorite.. you add the water you see in the small bowl and pop them (the whole thing) into your mouth… delicious.  I also think this is what made me have diarrhea all the way home… Horrible plane ride.. but kind of worth it! (actually not worth it at all)

On the last day the wonderful office scheduled a taxi with a guide to take us (our last 4 hours) on a small sight seeing trip.  I was THRILLED.   When I got into the taxi with the guide we learned (quickly) that neither spoke English.   They took off and we had not idea where we would end up.   If you have seen the series “Idiot Abroad“.. you will know exactly how this is going to turn out.  (Some of you after reading my trip posts might have already equated “Idiot Abroad” and yours truly)

We did not go to a temple… although there were many famous ones in Pune.   We did not go to a fort… although I was told that there are amazing forts in Pune.   Our first stop was this amazing park like place where you can go and see animals in cages…  I think the Indians call it a Zoo.    I was really surprised and disappointed but in the end I went along and just laughed about it.. especially when I noticed how enthusiastic our guide was.   We couldn’t understand him but I forced him to teach me the Hindi word for every animal… boy was he patient.  He was also confused because I was only taking pictures of signs…  I will share one of them.

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After the zoo…  We wanted to go to some street shops to buy our families some presents.  (I had to find Ben a Ganesh Idol… and the other kids some presents).   With the help of google translate we thought they understood and we left the zoo… Things looked promising as we passed market places but…hmm no stopping.   We finally stopped in an underground parking and when we took the elevator up we found ourselves in a shopping mall.   (Very western looking…hmmmm)

I did what any tourist would do in a western shopping mall in India.  I took pictures of the signs… and here is one

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What is “MEN’S INNERWEAR”?

We were unable to buy any thing for the kids but we did find a tourist shop at the Mumbai airport!…

 

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Mumbai airport… very beautiful.  

 

… and as far as Ben’s special requests… well the McDonalds fell through…

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Ben wanted fries and I was going to at least get a french fry carton and fill it up with fries on the way home from the airport… but the only McDonalds I saw was closed…
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I took this picture of a Ganesh Shrine hoping that this would do for ben… Guess what… this wasn’t good enough of course… but fortunately the wonderful people in the office bought Ben a Ganesh Idol.   (I told you they were very kind and considerate)
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Here is Ben with his Ganesh.  I told him the story behind the idol and he wanted to know if there is the elephant body with Ganesha’s head some where.
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Last picture… homeward bound and looking at the beautiful sunrise… I took this between bathroom… runs (haha “runs”… get the multiple meanings?)… I hate having stomach problems on a flight (especially 10 hour flights)
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14 thoughts on “Weekend in India (End of Trip)”

  1. Your message about the mother and child was very heartfelt. Don’t we all wish we could do something… I’m not sure if you have ever been to China, but there are swarms of marginalised people exactly like them, so much so that society is heavily desensitised.
    Now onto the fun things – I’m struggling with the concept of “love and ingredient bits”. Is this a misprint or poor translation? Did someone demystify it for you?? I would have stayed the hell away… Had a good chuckle too with the Non-Veg signs. It must have been Very Important to deliver that message across! Sounds like you had a blast in India and made it home in one piece which is always a good sign. Shame about those Mc🍟 though!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It is a testament to your fantastic gift for entertaining story telling that you moved me past the mother and daughter…so very, very sad (I’ve said a prayer for them and I have faith that, some how, they figured out that you had given them a form of currency). Bless your sweet heart…I can imagine how dejected you felt…and the pain of feeling like you let them down. And, then, before I knew it, I was laughing so hard inside…especially when caught off guard by your account of the consequences of eating the delicious street food…and, don’t get me started about how adorable that picture of Ben is…and, his hair conjures up images of a storybook little boy and all the adventures he might have. You write so wonderfully….and, contrary to what you think, you do write in a way that makes people “feel”…your writing and photos are to me what Appy Fizz is to you 🙂 Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the fact that the chicken truck looks like it is full of bullet holes I like to think that the chickens were liberated by the revolutionary poultry front …. probably headed up by geese with a machine gun or something.

    I can’t remember the name now but when I lived in Birmingham we used to eat the little fragile bowls full of chickpeas and tamarind sauce all the time – a local south Indian restaurant did them ….. I loved them such a lot.

    Glad you got home safely.

    Mainly I wish we lived in a more equal world, I really wish that.

    Like

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