Having survived a few nights in luxury at the Renaissance Hotel in Mumbai, I was due for a few days in Bangalore, South East from Mumbai. The morning of the flight, I got two text messages, which I think will be fairly typical during my time here. Firstly, my flight had been cancelled & I was now flying on a later flight, and secondly, I should travel early, as the overnight rain had been heavy & transport was running slow.
So, Moses, the driver, appeared 3 hours before flight time, and we were at the airport 30 minutes later… hardly running slow by the standards I’ve witnessed this far!! That said, a wee bit of orientation was no bad thing, as Indian Airports are a little different from UK. Firstly, I had to dig out my ticket to get into the check in hall… then I had to get my bags scanned – before check in!! I checked in, went through the normal security scanners and was in the Departures lounge around 2 hours ahead of take off.
A bit of people watching, a quick phonecall home to Dad, some games on the mobile & a read through some documents managed to see me through the wait no bother. Then, when the flight was called, the bags got scanned again!! Security conscious these Indians!! On the plane, it was just like EasyJet or RyanAir… well, except you got a free drink & meal. I slept the entire flight, missing take off & the meal (probably no bad thing to be honest) and woke up just before landing… and what a landing!! If he’d hit the ground any harder I think the plane would have been requiring a refit!! Having kinda woken up I decided to take a sip of my free drink… lemon juice. Mental Note to Self. Never, Ever, drink Lemon Juice again!! Rank!!
So I got collected by Victor, one of the Bangalore Drivers, and he took me to the Apartments. The first thing I noticed about Bangalore roads is that they hit proper road speeds… as a consequence I saw my first two Indian road accidents!! I also noticed that alot of drivers drive with their hazard lights on… apparently, this is because they have limited sight (either through dodgy rear-view mirrors, or because, they have limited sight!!!!!)!! Victor also took the opportunity to shunt a pedrestrian off the road with his nearside front wing… at low speed I should say, but nonetheless, brutal driving!!
I was staying in a three bed appartment, which has a cleaner, a laundry man & a cook!! They ring the door bell endlessly each morning too which isn’t a great to be honest… nice as it is. Anyways, the work environment is good too and the rest of the team seem pretty dead on. Young team, with all the Bangalore guys under 31 (bar the Manager). Last night we headed out for dinner & I had a bit of Indian Beef… I didn’t think that’d be popular, but hey, if you’re going to have some cow, it might as well be holy cow!! They do actually wander the streets of Bangalore, although I’ve not seen any in Mumbai. Also wandering the streets of Bangalore are dogs… which enjoy a howl at night… almost like the wilds with your eyes closed & howling wolves in the background!!
I’m sure there are other bits I’ve missed so far, like my lunch which cost about 60p for a toasted sandwich & milkshake… or the mozzie bites (current tally at 5), but I’m in a rush to get to dinner. Back to Mumbai on Sunday morning!!