Friday, March 10, 2017

Day 8, Mumbai, India

For Mumbai we had signed up one of the ship's excursions., "Mumbaion the Move".
Ready for departure at 10, but our bus wasn't! A small microphone problem meant that we had to switch from an old dirty bus for an even older dirty bus. 
First stop was the Gateway of India - an impressive welcome portal to the Port of Mumbai. Right next is the great Taj Mahal Hotel. There live more than 20 million people in Mumbai and the streets can not cope with the traffic. Traffic jams of cars and motorcycles that winds between each other, while all honking the horn - a deafening inferno. Pedestrians crossing streets at risk of life and limb - there are no rules to keep back for people who need to cross the streets. 
Next stop was the Church Gate Station, a busy hub in south Mumbai. Here we saw the so-called dabbawallahs- who brings lunch out  from home for jobs. The women in the home cook every day fresh food in the morning,. Then dabbawallahs collect food in small bags and brings it to the central squares, such as Church Gate. The food is distributed there to other dabbawallahs who brings the lunch to the men's workplace. In the afternoon the bags are collected and brought back to the home. From Churchgate we took the local train to Mahalaxmi station. Where roads were a chaos as train services to function, although all trains were jam-packed and the doors of the train are not closed.
In Mahalaxmi so we Dhobi Ghat (translated: place where the clothes are washed) - which is Mumbai's largest human-powered washing machine: Every day washing thousands of kilos of clothes and linen in the 1026 outdoor troughs, hang to dry, packaged and brought back hotels and private . We had a fine view of washing the seats from the bridge over the railway at the station.
Next stop was Mani Bhavan which was Mahatma Gandhi's headquarters. The building is now a museum with historical photographs and exhibits showing how the famous leader Mahatma Gandhi once lived and conducted his political activity. Letters he wrote to world leaders - eg. Hitler, Mussolini and Roosevelt. On the ride back to the ship through the crowded streets so we sacred cows, passed the impressive Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus station and the University of Mumbai. We were back at 3 pm, somewhat later a calculated due to problems with the bus, but also the heavy traffic in the streets. Windjammer had kept lunch for us - a late lunch and time for sun on the deck.
More information about Mumbai Sights and Shopping.

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