After two-ten hour Delta flights from Seattle, I landed in Mumbai via Amsterdam. My wife Linna Wei was supposed to be on this trip with me, but her work schedule got a little demanding.
Customs was quick and smooth and my Hilton Hotel taxi was waiting for me outside of customs. When we pulled up to the hotel, there were three security officers that wiped the car for bomb material, checked the truck, undercarriage with mirrors and inside of the car before we were allowed to drive up to the entrance. My baggage and I both had to go through scanners before walking inside to check in. This was a result from November 2008 when two luxury hotels and other high profile targets were attacked with automatic weapons and explosives focusing on foreigners.
The next day I got to experience the poverty through-out Mumbai via car. I wasn’t shocked….maybe all of my China visits warmed me up. I got to admit this was the worse poverty I have seen from all of my world travels though, of course I got to see the beautiful side of Mumbai too. I was lucky to hit a great seafood restaurant in Mumbai with a few new friends on my first night.
This was my first trip to India with mixed feelings about coming due to conservations with friends and co-workers about the slums, traffic and water. Now that I have spent a week here, those mixed feelings have been appeased; India is filled with proud people, delicious food and cricket fans.