I suffered from a bit of traveler's paralysis this morning so it was a really slow start to the day. I travel quite a bit and often alone and every once in awhile I get mild agoraphobia and don't feel quite ready to confront the surroundings I am in. Today was such a day because I started thinking about negotiating my way around Mumbai and being stared at all day, I wasn't sure I was up for it.

M. called when he woke up this morning and got me motivated to go out and explore. I had lunch at the delicious Indian buffet in the hotel and off I went! I hired a driver for $20 for the day. He took me around to some stores and to see some sites, then dropped me off at the Gateway to India so I could do a walking tour the Lonely Planet recommended. He waited for a couple hours and then brought me back to the hotel. Easy, breezy!

Here are some shots of my day. All in all, this is a city of contrasts, rich and poor, east and west, tradition and modernity.

Oh, and multiple choice: Which did I NOT see wandering the streets today?
A) Chickens
B) Dogs
C) Cats
D) Elephants
E) Goats
F) Cows

More than one answer may be correct. Scroll to bottom for answer.

View of the Arabian Sea and City from My Hotel Room

Taj Mahal Hotel

Gateway to India

Colorful India

Mumbai Taxis

Homeless and Stray Dogs Line the Streets

Decaying Building

Sunday afternoon cricket game

Cricket Players


Sleepy Dog

Answer to Multiple Choice:
C - Cats. For some reason not a cat to be seen anywhere. I won't think about that too much.

Posted from Mumbai


The Big Finn said...

Homeless, stray dogs...breaks my heart!

Michelle said...

:( I know! All the animals here are kind of sad looking. The horses are skin and bones. The dogs all have mange and are curled up all over the place.

And the children are all banging on the car window or following you down the street, asking for food and money. I want to scoop up the kids and the animals and bring them all home with me.

Ola said...

Do you see a lot of non-indian people there, ie westerners and others? Many people who look like tourists, taking photographs, making movies? Are tourists a novelty in the area or are you feeling quite comfy walking around the streets by yourself? Just wondering how people there (on the streets, not the hotel workers :-) ) are used to seeing foreigners.

Expat Traveler said...

looks like it was a great trip at least. I'd love to be photographing there!

lobstah said...

Wow, what an amazing adventure. I would be having a hard time with the homeless and strays and sad animals too. We are very lucky to live the way we do.

Michelle said...

Ola - I see hardly ANY non-Indians. I've seen about 10 or so at my hotel, 4 or 5 walking around and a couple in cars. I thought there would be more tourists but this is also the low season because of the monsoons. Maybe there are more in the winter?

ET- I wish I had all day and a better camera and skills because there is so much photography inspiration here.

Lobstah-it is an amazing experience. I think India gets under your skin in a love-hate kind of way. The homeless and the strays are hard though. I start off on this internal philosophical debates about how you could make a difference in a situation like this.