Thursday, 27 November 2008

Mumbai Memories

I have been shocked and saddened by the reports of the recent terrorist attacks in Mumbai. I was brought up in Pune, 120 miles south east of Mumbai (or Bombay, as it was then). We didn't visit very often, mostly on our way to and from the UK, but we had number of friends who lived not very far from where some of the attacks have taken place. I loved Mumbai. It was big and brash and boisterous compared to the relative gentility of Pune Cantonment. I never stayed in either of the hotels but I did go through the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (or Victoria Terminus (VT) as it was then). My memories are happy ones: being mobbed by coolies at VT, the lights on Marine Drive, evening strollers along Chowpatti Beach, the grandeur of the Gateway to India, the Indian handicraft emporiums, swimming at Breach Candy, old family friends ...

It's heartbreaking to hear of such acts of violence being committed against foreigners. In all my years in India I never once felt threatened because of who I was. In fact I was always treated with the utmost respect and consideration, even at the hands of complete strangers who had nothing to gain by their kindness. I am sure that these attacks sicken the hearts of the majority of Mumbaites, and Indians, and I hope that this group, whoever it is, is stamped out before it blemishes an otherwise hospitable country.

1 comment:

  1. When we went to India for our holiday recently we went via Mumbai (airport only)to Delhi. I also feel saddened that this is happening in India. We had a wonderful holiday and found the Indian people so friendly and welcoming. Obviously my experience there does not really compare with yours Gai but I feel you are correct in saying the majority of Indians would not want these kind of acts against visitors to their country, or to anyone.

    A x