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Lesson 1 - make sure you pay someone who works a the hostel

Mumbai, Coloba

After Juhu out shaken bodies made it to Coloba, the 'backpacking area' of Mumbai I was glad to read in our Lonely Planet (how that book came to be bible! in Oz the best thing to do with it is throw it away but in India you depend on it!) We found our hostel, got persuaded that the one we booked with was full so we should go to this one instead, paid someone who we thought worked there but was actually a kid from the street, had to pay again after a slightly frightening encounter with the owner, had the guy we paid by accident follow us around giving us 'I'm gonna cut your throat if you don't give me more money' motions and finally, after Nick bravely shook him off, retreated to the famous Leopolds bar. Phew!

After all that we sat in the darkened upstairs 'couples only' bar, tried to make conversation with some American travellers next to us who were not impressed with our ' oh my god help' attitude, and finally settled down a bit. This was India and we just had to get used to it. Every minute there was something new and every step down the street was like a huge adventure into the completely unknown. And this was just Mumbai! I expect that it's actually a very nice place once you get used to it, colourful and exotic, but for me, I actually began wanting to go back to Juhu! or at least get outa there. We tried once more to go out and have a look around and spent the next god knows how long just walking up and down the street in front of Leopolds passing markets, hawkers, drum sellers, balloon sellers (what you would want with a giant pear shaped balloon I don't know!?), young girls with skinny babies in their arms, colourful men dressed all in orange and so many other things it's now a memory of hazzy bright colours and exotic faces. Eventually we retreated once more into, and i'm sorry to say the word 'nice' in the same sentence, a nearby nice and safe McDonalds....

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..On the boat to the more peaceful 'Elephanta Island', Nick makes friends with two guys who wanted us to take their photo.

Posted by emils 21:23 Archived in India

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