September in India!!

1 Oct

Well, after a nice and relaxing holiday in a WET yet beautiful Goa, I find myself back in the hustle and bustle of Bombay.

Its great here at the moment, the sun is shining and it brightens the mood, the rains have stopped and the temperature is around 30 degrees. It makes a huge difference to the suffocating heat back in May to June ¬†and the rain and gloom during the monsoon. Life feels easier here when you can walk around again without having to hide from heat or rain, its almost liveable! ūüôā You can once again exercise in the parks in the evenings and feeling slightly more attractive as you’re not being covered in sweat 24/7

So, the celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi festival has been going on between 19-29 September with a lot of festivities and mainly A LOT of noise…..

Its a great festival and a powerful one to watch, starting on the 19th the building with the installation of a Ganesha statue and ending by immersing him into the sea. Some immerse the idol the 2nd day, some on the 5th and ending on the 11th day.

Most of ¬†people in my building were involved, we were given lunch and dinners for 2 days which was great and nice to get to know some of the residents we didn’t know, I also got free lectures from the elders about the festival….very nice.

Two days ago, we joined our maid as their wadi celebrated the end of the festival as they paraded the statue towards the Versova beach….WOW it was loud, I felt dizzy and confused just after 20 minutes, no joy for those who like a bit of calm and peace!

Also as I am working with hearing impaired children and am trying to educate about noise pollution it was painful to see toddlers in the middle of the celebrations just beside the drummers.

I am quite glad its all over, a day would have been enough! In our building for the 2 days the Ganesha was with us there was constant music blaring from large speakers from morning to night , beautiful Hindi songs but way too loud to be enjoyable, this was accompanied by the drummers¬†practicing their skills in the forest behind our house at random hours and then the celebrations from the nearby buildings. I had to keep my windows completely shut all day to try and keep out the¬†noise¬†that was stressing both me and my dog out……It seems most people here agree that its a nuisance,¬†couldn’t¬†they just play soft music as you enter the temple? Would be much more appropriate and peaceful…tip for the future!

Later on the 29th we spent the whole day watching movies at our friends place, guitars, good food , Peaceful and beautiful…a great way to celebrate too……

Wet and quiet Palolem


Buffalos on the way to JP Wadi where our auntie lives

again…the garbage! ūüė¶ Its gotten worse, not sure what, if anything, i could do about it? Tips appreciated

Aunti’s Ganesha at home

Decorations at our building

Temple decorations in our building

Our buildings Ganesha off to be immersed into the sea…….

View from Auntie’s place in JP Wadi

JP Wadi

Auntie joining the parade walking towards the sea

Ok, so here was a moment when one of the drummers rolled over his drum to catch money with his teeth that had been thrown on the street and then revert back….seemed odd, thought it was a custom, auntie explained “they’re just showing off….”

Here’s another one……hmmmm…. impressive indeed

Auntie, beautiful daughter and friends

LOL, our watchmen tried to take our crazy dog for a walk but ended up Freddy taking him for a ride

half deaf and just a lil bit tired of the celebrations we decide to cozy up in a flat with friends, food, music and movies for the remaining of the day……Happy Ganesh Chaturthi…til next year…..


Mornings in Bombay are blissful

22 Aug

Early mornings during the monsoon in Mumbai are calm and refreshing, very different from later on during the day when the city is wide awake, cars speeding, horns blazing, people and animals in a chaotic dance under the hot sun..

In the mornings the streets are almost empty, dogs sit around with sleep in their eyes, ¬†maids on their way to work walk¬†unhurriedly¬†in pairs, Streets are being swiped, men are getting their beards trimmed by the barber on the road, children awaits their buses that will take them to school…..the air is thick with smell of incense, earth and damp water, birds chatter from the trees.

Its August now and the trees are full of thick and lustrous green leaves still heavy with water from the nights showers of rain, puddles of water have formed on the streets.

The mornings are a bliss, it might be my favorite time of the day or at least the time when I feel the calmest, when I can breath the easiest and see my surroundings the clearest.

Meet Freddy Floyd, our little baby

28 Jul

So the blog has been quiet for a while as i’ve been a mum for a couple of weeks now to our little baby Freddy.

After a very long time of convincing my somewhat apprehensive partner that we should have a dog we finally took the plunge and decided to try and find a baby in need and welcome him to our home.

I was like in a fever of excitement as I went to the local pet store to prepare our home with all necessary equipment, a crate, food, toys and treats, I was so excited I nearly bought the whole store! But we still hadn’t a pup to take home…

We called a few of the absolute wonderful charities working with stray animals to find our baby. There are so many of them , all working day and night caring for the poor animals of Mumbai’s streets. I’m in total awe and admiration for these organisations, they do a wonderful blessed work.

As my blog post came in the DNA paper next to the advertisements of the charity “World for all”¬†¬†,we decided it was a sign we should get our pup from them. After two days of anxious waiting Freddy’s foster parents finally brought him over. We had decided that we would not make a decision that evening but wait until the next day to come and pick him up if we felt he was a good fit…..well, that didn’t work!

As he came in to our house, his little tail wagging and came straight to us, jumping up and licking us in the face, it was such an instant love, I looked at Apurva and he looked and me and we both nodded in agreement, this is our baby!

Its been a wonderful and exhausting few weeks to find our feet together and find a balance. We don’t know too much about his earlier life, we know he was born of a stray mum and that they were in a dangerous and hostile area, he was taken from his mum and brothers and sisters at only 4 weeks. This is way too soon to separate a puppy from his family, it can cause much damage with separation anxiety, they won’t learn good normal behavior and so on. I am very happy to say that after a few days of a lot of crying from his side and a lot of rough play he has now found peace and is the happiest pup in the world.

He is the kind of person who sits halfway out of the car when we drive, ears and tongue flapping in the wind, eager to see the surroundings. He is potty trained in only a weeks time and sit and come on demand. He sleeps all night in his crate and wakes us up when he needs to go to the toilet. I am amazed!

The Indian breed is, as I had expected, an extremely adaptable, sociable and sweet pet! Spread the word!

My blog post in the DNA newspaper yesterday

10 Jul

So nice, my blog post was selected for the Monday edition of DNA newspaper’s around the blog section.. We were driving to work reading through the paper and there it was!

I cant get my head around the fact that it was featured next to the advertisements for adoption of stray dogs, the very same organisation that i’d spoken to the day before as we are looking for a puppy to adopt!
Life happens. I can’t recall the number of times similar coincidences has happened in my life. Often it’s easy to ignore the signs and keep on moving through life unaware of universe and the messages its sending you.
Maybe its time to stop and listen

First days of monsoon

19 Jun

It’s still very humid, and the rain hasn’t really started with all its force….but its a lighter feeling in the air and you can breathe just a little bit easier….

Love, Anna

My favorite thing right now

13 Jun

Time moves both slow and fast here. I am working for my NGO ¬†but I am not working the way I used to in London,I have much more free time now, needless to say internet is a big part of my life. And nothing better than reminiscing of old days and the cities¬†I’ve¬†lived in and belong to in a way or another.

This video is the most beautiful performance I’ve seen in a long time. Van Morrison, Chet Baker and Elvis Costello performs the song “send in the clowns” at my favorite hangout in London, Ronnie Scott’s¬† Its¬†one of the oldest jazz clubs in the world they have had the most amazing artists perform at this intimate and friendly club since 1959. It is always an experience to go there, every artist will give their most and you’ll always leave a little richer in knowledge and a little happier in heart…

This performance is the most heartfelt description of unrequited¬†love I’ve ever seen….

Sorry I can’t upload videos here yet but soon i’ll be able to, please just follow this link and enjoy

Sunday in Bandra as the pre-monsoon showers arrived

11 Jun

This weekend I spent the day with my friend who moved here just after me in her neighborhood Bandra, its located about half an hour drive from Andheri if the traffic permits.

We had a beautiful night listening to music at home and talking about how much we’ve changed in just a couple of months in Mumbai. Acceptance is key, we’ve both felt sad and lonely and lost, raged and complained and again, 3 months in we’re loving it…lesson learned; nothing stays the same, neither do we.

Bandra is a lovely area with a different feel to it, its cosmopolitan and has a great mix of everything. Coffee shops, bars and restaurants where you’ll find bollywood stars, foreigners and trendy young locals. Many¬†Bollywood¬†stars lives here including the king of Bollywood Shahrukh khan himself , haven’t found his bungalow yet though! Am searching ūüôā

Its a nice feeling not to stand out as a much as a blonde foreigner as you do in my area. I’d love to live there but we sadly cannot afford it right now, the rental prices are almost as bad as London..I am so happy though it’s within easy reach from me so I can spend lazy¬†Sundays here..

View from Becky’s flat, bird watching made easy

Becky, dog and the sea…..

The first pre-monsoon showers arrived as we were having lunch..heavy and powerful.

Update to follow!

Love , Anna