Episode 1: Au Naturel India

Yep, thats me. On an early Friday morning wondering what the hell went wrong for me and my new buddies to be staying in a crappy “3-star” hotel according to that travel agent we met at the airport. We arrived late with no hotel booking as we decided to take the “Au Naturel + Raw!” approach to our stay in India. Truly, we had our first encounter with a full-grown bull roaming outside the main entrance of our hotel 30 mins after we touched down.

And this is my morning view of the Mumbai cityscape in Andheri East, raw feed to you from my 3-star hotel room.

I have so much experiences, (many wonderful of course) that I will split up my encounters in India in several bite-sized posts. This is what I felt on the first day of my “Au Naturel & Raw” tour of India. Its an amazingly poor city if you look at it superficially by observing street activity, the Indians have no qualms living in squalor with piles of rubbish everywhere, downright dilapidated dwellings, poor road signs, pedestrians sharing the roads alongside cars, incessant horning of impatient drivers with no respect for traffic rules. Yea, if I stayed there for an hour, this is what I would think is all of Mumbai & India since Mumbai was supposed to be the most developed and cosmopolitan city. In a few days time, I would understand more about this rising nation of 1 billion.

All photos of my trip will be uploaded on Facebook, just search “Bjorn Lee” if you do not have an account yet.


5 thoughts on “Episode 1: Au Naturel India

  1. yayy i’m the first to comment.

    not surprised that the pic with all dilapidated dwellings are the first to make their appearance on your blog. there’s a certain structure in bombay’s chaos. being a person who has always lived an organized life (your trips/exp to europe and US don’t count), i think it will be hard to understand the ways of third world. when ppl ask me about bombay, i always say that its like singapore which actually might be degrading bombay a bit haha..but what i mean is that its a cosmopolitan with all the facilities and all the riches that you see in singapore AND at the same time there exists a totally opposite world living in coherence with everybody else. its an awesome experience. too bad you went to goa after bombay…you should have rented a car (comes with the chauffeur..dirt cheap) and gone around the country. india can never be experienced without actually living thr. i smtimes feel like a foreigner in my own country when i go from one state to the other. the langugage, food, culture..everything changes..i gotta use sign language when i’m in south india. thr’s so much diversity that it cannot be felt unless you’ve lived thr.

    i hope you got to see bombay..i mean i hope you felt its vibrancy.

    thr are so many preconceived notions that ppl have about india. mostly ignorant. like you and mingyeow doubting the living conditions of a 3 star hotel or hotels in india in general. its amazing the sort of things that ppl talk about. like that incident you mentioned about hunter. just ignorant views that make good topics for conversation. actually i’m glad you guys went thr and saw things first hand. its diff from china…very very diff. infrastructure is in shambles and yet things move and get done. ofcourse, in 5 yrs time if smething is not done about it, india will not be able sustain its growth. and this whr the present indian govt fits in…only with congress ard can “collective” growth be achieved.hmmm i digress.

    did you try out the chinese food in india? you should go to north east…its a diff life altogether. totally cut off from india. yeah its beautiful as well. a road trip that has to be done on a motorcycle. with the winds rushing through your hair, the smell of the freshly watered farmland, the smell of the road buring under the sun, when you’re one with the nature….this is one roadtrip that has to be done soon.

    looking fwd to your other posts on india.

  2. i heard a different view on congress as the best party to lead india going forward but what do i, an ignoramus know? 😉 haha.. why dun u blog about Congress on Lvl3Uninterrupted blog?

    i didn’t really try much chinese food, only one dish i think but i forgot which one.. too busy chowing on indian food.

  3. in the process of drafting a concrete research actually haha..i had this debate with a friend a while back. and its true that security and safety in india is much worse than it was during BJPs time so i’m not going to argue that. but as far as the overall development is concerned, yes i think congress is a good party. i’ll post my article on lvl3 blog once i’m done with it.

    compassionate capitalism makes sense. and thats whr congress fits in.

    but go ahead and post your comments on indian politics. i’m curious.

  4. it reminded me of China…too many things to be changed for the better…

  5. Great experience! I wish I can visit India someday. I’m not surprised to see your first photo here about India. It’s a common view in some cities in China too. The key is not about what india is now, but how it’s changing and where it will go. I hope you have discovered some clue about it. As you have gone to China too, you can compare these two countries as a third party. It will be interesting. Looking forward to see your following post.

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