Monday, April 23, 2012

First Impressions of Mumbai

it seems somehow so familiar.

3 Little boys sitting by the construction site of the new ASB Elementary building - with stray dog (many around)
I didn't realize it would feel so much like coming home . The humid warmth of the air, with it's rich complicated smell that reminds me in some way of compost is familiar. It's an organic smell with dirt and excrement and flowers and death and life all mixed together.The rich sounds of multiple voices speaking with fluid language rising and falling in the midst of car honking and crows and it all seems normal even though I haven't been here for more than forty-five years.
Getting some food ;-)

Seeing all the traffic and the dirt and the half-finished buildings and the visible heat. Feeling the heat on my skin and in my breath. Tasting the richness - especially tasting the feasts of great food we had at every meal was maybe the most familiar of all. Nancy reminds me that she was surprised when she realized years ago that my comfort food has always been Indian food.  The meals we are served on this trip were absolutely a joy.  We stayed at the Kohinoor Elite hotel, but had most of our meals at  the Sofitel.  Each meal had so much to choose from - always plain rice and a plau or biryani with dahl, and usually 8-10  dishes - chicken, lamb several vegetarian, several salads and breads.  Even breakfast had a great variety of western and oriental choices, along with many fruits and juices .

India is incredible.  Such extremes of wealth and poverty, hunger and abundance, comfort and dis- ease and disease.

After a long trip , we safely returned home.  Then later, relaxing and watching TV, we see a now very familiar scene as The Amazing Race goes to Cochin, India and we see the contestants marvel at the traffic and the heat and the feel of India.

And it seems somehow so familiar...

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