Yet another shocking confessional, I’ve never been to Mumbai! I have spent three weeks in India, though, so I feel somewhat qualified to write this post. Besides, I did say I would be writing about places I’ve researched as well. And, I know, this picture isn’t of Mumbai, but Palace of the Winds in Jaipur. However, as it’s the cover photo on my copy of Lonely Planet’s guide to India I felt it was indicative enough of the country to use here. If it’s good enough for Lonely Planet…
For anyone that’s been, India leaves a lasting impression. In any one given day you can feel like you never want to leave, you want to explore every inch of this fascinating country. Then twenty minutes later you’re checking flight schedules to see when the next plane leaves. I spent the majority of my time in India in the countryside of Rajasthan, visiting many of the raj palaces as well as some of the poor farmers scrapping a meagre subsistence off the land.
For research specific to Mumbai, I watched several documentaries and movies that featured the city. The History Channel’s show Trashopolis was particularly interesting. You can see it here: http://vimeo.com/30695759 And yes, I did see the Top Gear special that started in Mumbai, some research is more entertaining than others. Another source, and this is possibly cheating relying on another author’s research, I read Nicola Marsh’s Busted in Bollywood. Although her story dwells a lot more on Indian food and the Bollywood scene, she also included general descriptions of Mumbai which corroborated my research.
In Singapore Fling, Lalita and Jeremy spend a few days in Mumbai, not only in the office but also visiting the slums of Dharavi where Lalita searches for her birth mother. Following the emotional upheaval of the events in India, my couple next head off for some rest and relaxation on the Indonesian island of Sumba.