day 48_Mumbai

I’ve been a bit unfortunate with the weather. I should have known, since I was coming during the monsoon season. But even so, I have already got a good sense of what Mumbai is about. I think the city is quite different from the other cities in India, since it’s much more westernized. As one of my friends put it, Mumbai is to India what Shanghai is to China - great, but probably not at all representative...

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day 47_Mumbai_Dharavi

Since the monsoons have not stopped, my tour of Dharavi - one of the largest slums in the world - never happened. But at least I had a chance to drive by and see the incredibly heterogeneous boundary composed of little shanties packed closely to each other.

Planned social-housing slabs intermixed with self-organizing carpet of shanties:

day 45_Mumbai

So much for exploring the city.... the monsoons come and go as they please...

day 44_Mumbai_first impressions

The infrastructure and transportation in Mumbai is horrendous! But travelling around the city is that much more interesting and fun. Compared to Chinese cities, it's dirtier and way more unplanned, but perhaps because of the chaotic and self-organizing nature, it feels more vibrant and alive.

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I had a chance to see the ostentatious Antilla house (below) by Perkins and Will only from a distance... too many complications. But I must admit, the building infuriated me. I don't even know why... I just couldn't believe that the whole thing was for one family; they have approximately 600 servants living with them. And as I was contemplating this preposterous design from the comfort of a car, people (some barefooted) were swiftly moving through the streets, navigating between the cars, trying to find shelter as the rain drops slowly started coming down.

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