I’ve been back in Mumbai now for nearly two weeks, and frankly, the weather has been superb. I am of course generalising here, as the end of Monsoon season usually carries with it incredible thunder & lightning storms, and this week, so far has produced several. But lets not let that get in the way of what has been 10 of the most glorious mornings (yesterday aside), where by 1030, I’m convinced it’s broken 30 degree C.
Indeed it was so good a few mornings ago, as I was lying by the pool, I was thinking to myself, “why would I ever want to leave this?!”!! It’s fair to say, I’ve been dealt a good couple of cards in the offer of a role in India. The weather is superb 8 months of the year, and I think I’ve even got to the point now where I can distinguish between good humidity levels and bad humidity levels; the food is superb and varied, from great Italian, to of course, great Indian; I’m well treated by my employer; the work is entertaining; the people are great, both the expats & the locals.
It’s funny that I should be having these thoughts this week of course, as it’s five years on Monday since I left Northern Ireland (for the second time) to take up the job with LloydsTSB (as it was then). I was so certain that I would work to my five year plan and head home.
I guess a lot has changed since then… certainly the job market in NI doesn’t look like it’s improved much!! Though the bank has changed, and opportunities to work in location independent jobs is increasing. You never know, my next job might just be the one I’ve been after all this time. I’ve still not got a mortgage (thankfully!!), I’ve got no real ties to any ones spot either, so if it’s not NI next, why can it not be Perth, California, New York, Hong Kong… who knows?!
Anyways, back to the weather… on Tuesday night, I was invited to an Invest Northern Ireland event in the Taj Lands End hotel, in Bandra, Mumbai. Arlene Foster, Minister for Enterprise, Trade & Investment was over promoting a trade mission of 26 Northern Irish companies. I got an invite, in typical Indian fashion, because I knew the event organiser!! But on the way to the hotel, Mumbai was engulfed in the most amazing thunder & lightning storm I’ve ever seen. For a full hour & half (for that’s how long I was in the car travelling) there was heavy rain, lightning flashes everywhere almost by the second, and some incredible rattles of thunder. And it all started with a bizarre, almost apocalyptic yellow sky. I counted 23 forks of lightning on the journey.
As for the event itself, it was all very civilised… I was introduced to the Minister & her first comment to me was “Wow, you’re the spit of your father.” – now they say NI is small, but if you ever wanted evidence of it, that’s it in one sentence. I didn’t know they even knew each other!! We had our photo take together as well, which may or may not end up in the Impartial Reporter, but it was a good laugh to have a chat with her. I also met her special advisor, who I remember from university, now a Doctor Andrew Crawford, from Omagh country. So some free food and a few hours later, I hit the road back to Powai to relax and get some sleep.