So I spent two weeks in Mumbai (or Bombay, or Bbay, if you are THAT cool) over break, from December 27, 2005-January 11, 2006.
I decided, last time I left India, that I would go back during my Christmas break from grad school if I had the money. Why Mumbai, you ask? Well, last time I went to India, I spent 2 1/2 months in rural (when I mean rural, I mean RURAL, I mean, no running water or electricity) Bihar, which was a wonderful experience. (And no, I didn't get mugged, conned or raped, contrary to popular opinion of Bihar).
I have some friends from India, all of whom were shocked that I went to Bihar, and began to describe the virtues of the metropolii of India, especially Bombay. So I thought, hell, why not go check this shit out? So I found myself a flat online, in a suburb called Andheri West, booked myself a cheap plane ticket (mera pita Delta ke liye pilot the), packed my tiny rolling suitcase full of books (and clothes, I guess) and off I flew. (oh I had to get a visa too , of course. but that was not rather painful, since it was my third for india, I think they don't care anymore).
It's interesting that I flew Alone, because I am not an Alone kind of person. But I am an India person, and it's not very easy to convince your friends to take an impromtu trip to India without so much in the way of plans, hence I had to deal with Alone, so I could get my India fix.
Off I went. Flying into Bombay at night, my good friend, who is from BBay, picked me up and drove me to my flat. I briefly met Jyoti, the caretaker of the flat while the owner is visiting her daughter in the US. I checked out the flat...
Marble floors, in a "society" complex. There was a pool in the middle of the complex (which remained empty the whole time I was there). This flat consisted of 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a kitchen, and a living room. Quite swanky, in a place like BBay which is horribly expensive. I was told this flat cost 52 lakhs to buy (more than 100,000 $) but I was only playing $150 for my two week stay.
This is the kitchen....
This is my bedroom (socks on the floor)
Anyways, so, after taking it all in, I tried to sleep.