The Royal Orchid
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... while our driver went off to lunch, we could immerse ourselves for a short while in his life and work.
I would like to see India free and strong so that she may offer herself as a willing and pure sacrifice for the betterment of the world. The individual, being pure, sacrifices himself for the
family, the latter for the village, the village for the district, the district for the province, the province for the nation, the nation for all. (Mahatma ...
... for both to be at the same location). It's-about an hour from central mumbai by train and ferry. The pagoda is the largest unsupported dome in the world, inside the room is incredible. It can hold 8000 meditators and every sound (a bird flapping it's wings or a child shouting outside) in the room has an incredible echo. We book a 24 hour train to Agra. The trains are much smoother and safer than the buses so it's a relief to get ...
... my body has gotten used to being up for long periods of time (record is almost 48hrs, during travel or 72hrs with 8 hrs of sleep total in 3 days).
Anyways, at 1pm the next (well, technically same) afternoon, we dragged ourselves down to meet our driver and guide for tour around Mumbai. We started out at the Dhobi Ghats, or the Laundry area. This is basically only a highlight for tourists, as Indians would rather not associate with the lowest caste. It is ...
... to move, honk. Driving on the wrong side of the road, honk. Stand still in traffic, honk. Accelerate, honk. Parked, honk. Leaving the car, honk. Well, you get the idea. First thing was first. Since we left South Africa at 13:30 and arrived in Mumbai at 8:30am with a 13 hour travel time and 3 hours sleep each, well, we needed a little catchup. Luckily we could get into our room for a little afternoon siesta to catch up before heading out for the evening ...
... to street practicing their English skills! I have to admit that a slum tour wasn't the first thing on my to-do list whilst in Mumbai, but this was easily the best thing I did and is what I'll take away most from the city. A must, for anybody travelling to Mumbai.