My Look See Visit to Hyderabad
Trip Start Mar 29, 2007
74Trip End Sep 30, 2009
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Depart Dallas for my first ever trip to India on Tuesday Feb. 20th via Lufthansa. A pretty great airline to fly to India from Dallas as there is only one stop in Frankfurt. Plus it's a pretty even split in flight times...9+ hours to Frankfurt...2 hour layover...then 8+ hours to Hyderabad
Immigration at the Hyderabad airport was sort of a joke. I think they guy working the immigration control line was also a part time taxi driver, part time school teacher and part time narcoleptic. He may have woken up and looked at my passport for 3 secs before stamping it and moving on. Didn't check any bags for this quick trip so thru customs I went and on to the waiting hoards of people waiting to either a) meet loved ones or b) harass the tourists. I say (b) jokingly as there must have been 50 drivers looking for someone to take to a hotel...and likely charge them triple the rate they would a local. Fortunately for me, I had a confirmed hotel pickup and within a few seconds, my driver emerged and off we went to find the car. Within a few minutes we were off towards the hotel, complete with a cold towel and bottle of water to refresh myself on the way there. The drive toward the hotel gave me a pretty good idea on what driving would be like in India...scary as hell. Lot's of construction, narrow roads, thousands of honk-belching autos, the occasional cow in the road, three people on a motor bike built for one, a complete disregard for signals and signs...complete chaos...think the "Lord of the Flies" with cars
The office visit on Thursday and Friday went great...met a lot of great people including the person who would be my new boss. Just an overall great team...full of enthusiasm and all very in to their jobs and doing whats best for the firm. While in Hyderabad I also managed to check out the local nightlife with some fellow company expats which was surprisingly fun. Cheesy as hell, but fun. One thing that I know is going to make my liver shiver...is that most expats have a full time car and driver over here making it very easy to abuse the fact that when you go out bar hopping, you really don't have to worry about driving home...scary. I had a couple good meals too and given my taste for spicy food...I was definitely enjoying it all. Thursday and Friday were full of meetings during the day. On Saturday I hired a tour guide and hit some of the major local tourist destinations which you'll see some pictures of. After a late night Saturday night with some crazy Deloitters, I slept in on Sunday then asked my driver to take me to a local mall, department store and a couple other places so I could see what I could purchase there if I did actually live there. My flight left around 2AM Monday morning so after a quick cleanup back at the hotel Sunday night, I was back on a plane for 21 hours of flight time back to the US.
After this trip, I pretty much made the decision to choose India over New Zealand...crazy. I accepted the offer later that week and then had a little less than four weeks to do all the things I needed to do when you're moving out of the country for two years...oh joy. :-|