February 24, 2013

Dishonest Men in Mumbai (Maharashtra, India)

It feels kind of funny to write a blog post about Mumbai because we were barely there, but we have a few photos, so you get a (short) post! Lucky you!

India Gate, Mumbai

From Udaipur (read here), we hopped on the A/C 2-tier train car to Mumbai and enjoyed a good night's sleep. Our day began poorly and abruptly when we got off the train and were greeted with utter and pure chaos at the Bandra Terminus train station. Two cab drivers got into a physical fight over who would give us a ride and, because I was tired and burnt out on India, I joined the argument and, like a crazy woman, yelled at one of them. We finally agreed to get in a car with him and settled on a price (Rs450). Once we were in the car for a few minutes, the jerk-off taxi driver quickly says, "So it's Rs450 each," in a casual way and I.Lost.My.Shit. I don't know why I suddenly cracked, but I did.

"It's 450 total and YOU KNOW IT!" I yelled. "Pull over this car right now, I will not ride in this car with you!"


And finally, one of my proudest moments in India happened when I screamed and pointed in his face:

"YOU ARE NOT AN HONEST MAN!"

And that's how I became a crazy person. He didn't mutter a single word, but just looked uncomfortable in his seat as I shook my finger rapidly near his nose. I think he was shocked into submission because he looked afraid, which was probably the most logical response because I was DONE. When I glanced at Tom next to me, he was staring at me, open-mouthed, in awe, and he had the proudest look on his face. I'm pretty sure he fell in love with me all over again in that moment. It was one of those ridiculous India moments that neither of us will ever forget.

We checked into our guest house (Bentley's Hotel, not to be confused with Bentley Hotel Churchgate) and set out to explore the Colaba neighborhood for a few hours. Our first impression was that Mumbai is a lot nicer and enjoyable than Delhi (read here). It's still an Indian city, so it has it's share of poverty and trash, but it's much more cosmopolitan and modern. That night, I was seriously in need of some comfort, so we went to a touristy bar and ordered beers, sodas, a chicken burger, onion rings, and pizza. The food was mediocre at best, but it was still fantastic and just what I needed!

The best thing about visiting Mumbai was that it kicked off our week with Emily and Anna, two of our nearest and dearest from SF. They got married last summer and were were celebrating their honeymoon with a 2-week stay in India and graciously invited us to spend some time with them, to which we replied, "OMG YES!" They arrived in Mumbai on our second day there, and I was so happy to see them. You may remember these ladies from our trip to the Russian River Valley last Memorial Weekend when we went on a secret hike and sipped champagne in the woods. We love these gals and enjoy every moment we spend with them in San Francisco, so it was an extra bonus to see them and their familiar and comforting faces. We spent the afternoon walking around The Taj Hotel, visiting Crawford Market, checking out the beautiful and historical Mumbai CST train station before we hit up Leopold's (from Shantaram) and drank giant beers!

 


That was the end of our time in Mumbai. The next morning, we took a cab to the airport and flew to Kochi to really begin the fun with Emily and Anna. Stay tuned!

You can check out all of our Mumbai pics here!

9 comments:

  1. Ha ha ha, You did well, they always trying to take people for the ride, ha ha ha, that is their nature. You go Girl!

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  2. Don't try to swindle the scrappy kid from Pleasant Hill! She is scary!

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  3. That is the way to deal with them. Ethics are un kown to most of them and foreigners are considered loaded with money and good subject for swindel

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    1. Thanks! I was really proud of myself! India made me tough!

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  4. You shouldnt have paid more than 300/- for that cab ride. I feel really sorry the way cabbies and touts hoodwink tourists and because of that people go away with a poor impression of our country :(

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    1. I fully expect to pay more as a tourist than a local does, and I'm okay with that. Rest assured that I don't have a bad impression of your wonderful country! Being in a place for nearly 4 months, it's impossible to NOT encounter a few bad guys.

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  5. You could have told him to go by the meter ... and check the meter card which shows the price ... that way they cant cheat you at all

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    1. Hi Ricky - There was no actual meter (none of the cabs at this location had them). We were going by the fare card that gives general prices for distances/places, but he was trying to tell us that we had to pay that rate per person, as well as again for our luggage.

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