India

Paharganj, Delhi

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We travel from Agra to Delhi by National Highway – on broad, open, empty expanses of toll road, where our bus can drive fast all the way.  On the approach to Delhi we drive through two entirely new cities, being built from the ground up.  These are vast developments emerging on the open plain.  There […]

India

Agra

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The day after visiting the Taj Mahal we go to Agra Fort, a vast red castle strategically located on a meander of the Yamuna river.  It is built of red sandstone and dates from the 16th century.  Within its broad, high walls are several self-contained palaces, and mosques.  You can see the Taj Mahal across […]

India

Homesickness

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I have been in Mumbai for more than three months now, and when I left my brother at the international airport I started feeling homesick.  His presence here had thrown me back into a world where it is normal to have all my family and friends around me, and deeper than that – the comforting […]

India

Taj Mahal

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The road to Agra We travel by bus from Jaipur to Agra.  All the guide books and travel advice blogs I have read recommend train travel well above buses, but I cannot understand why.  Trains have to be booked in advance, and even then it is quite common for there not to be any tickets […]

India

Jaipur

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My brother and his girlfriend came out to visit me during my stay in India, and for the past two weeks we have been travelling within India.  Our first stop was in Jaipur, Rajasthan. We arrived in the evening, having flown from Mumbai.  It was 35˚C in Jaipur after 7pm when we landed.  From the […]

India

Bandra Skywalk

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Bandra has a skywalk, which runs for about 1.8km (1.1miles).  It connects Bandra East and West with the station, a series of interconnecting footbridges (or one long one), providing a safe, elevated platform for pedestrians to walk along. The Bandra skywalk was finished in June 2008 and was the first one in Mumbai.  There are […]

India

Haji Ali Dargah

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A photo tour of Haji Ali island tomb and causeway. On the approach to the Dargah. Inside the Haji Ali complex. This is the view upon leaving the tomb.  Note the stacks of sandals all around! An empty fountain beside the tomb chamber

India

Mahalakshmi

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Just beyond Mahalakshmi station and over the rail bridge lie the dhobi ghats.  These are concrete vats where dhobiwalas wash laundry every day; loads of washing are brought here from all over the city to be soaked and beaten at the dhobi ghats.  Mumbai’s dhobi ghat is said to be the largest outdoor laundry in […]

Kenya

Driving tour of Kitengela

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I found a video of driving in Kitengela. The video starts a bit slowly as it begins on the outskirts of town, but gets much more interesting after the first minute. It shows places I used to go to all the time, like Eastmatt – and after 3:00 (and once the truck moves that is […]

Kenya

Driving in Kajiado Province

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Video: Travelling through the region of Kenya where I lived, to a Swahili music soundtrack. This video is of driving from Nairobi towards the Kajiado province, in which Kitengela lies. It begins on the Nairobi to Mombasa highway, then takes a turning off south towards Athi River. This road is very similar to the ones […]

India

Holi – the festival of colours

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Holi, 27th March 2013 Today is Holi, the Hindu festival of colours. There is a drum and brass band playing outside my building, and the pigeons are busy dropping nesting material in through my window.  I clear the twigs, bits of plastic and twizzled curls of paper off the inner windowsill and out of my […]

India

Elephanta Island, and the spirit of E. M. Forster

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I visited Elephanta, an island that lies in Mumbai’s harbour, about seven miles north-east of the jetty in front of the Gateway of India.  I went down to the Gateway and bought a ticket for the ferry to the island (Rs 150 at time of writing), and then queued up on the jetty with groups […]

India

Practical Realities of Living Abroad

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This post is for those of you who might be feeling that I am living a glamorous and exotic life in the sunshine, while you suffer the ignominy of daily life.  This is to reassure you that my life is not glamorous, at all. I’ve recently realised that there’s going to have to be a […]

India

Nasik

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Last week I visited Nasik, a city about a hundred miles, and 4-5 hours by road or rail, north-east of Mumbai.  I took a rickshaw from Bandra to Lokmanya Tilak Terminus, where I caught the train.  For part of the journey I sat in a berth beside a family who were on their way to […]

India

Bombay by Night

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I went to an InterNations event, taking a taxi from Bandra over the Sea Link suspension bridge to Worli village. I met Hitesh, we got along well and at around 1am when the event was finishing, he took me on a drive through the city.  Surrounded by dark water and lights, Mumbai is incredibly beautiful […]

India

Life in Bandra

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I thought it might be interesting to write about some details of my everyday life now. My flat is a studio, one good-sized room with a bed and a kitchen at the end, with attached bathroom.  The kitchen windows open out onto a wire cage, which prevents the birds coming in (in theory), and can […]

India

Bandra West and Suburban Trains

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I’ve been quite busy in the past week or so acquiring a flat, and moving in.  I live in a suburb called Bandra West now, which lies north of Mahim Creek and west of the railway line, beside the sea.  I’ve been riding on the suburban trains, and doing a bit more wandering around and […]

India

Arriving in Mumbai

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I arrived yesterday and saw the sunshine and palm trees beckoning to me outside the airport.  Had a very interesting taxi drive from the north of the city where the airport is into south Mumbai.  Drove past the slum Dharavi, and saw in the distance the looming high-rises of the suburb Bandra.  The drive took […]