We are here!  Mumbai, the bustling financial center of India.  Everything is new and exciting – the smells, the sounds, the sights.  It’s The Honeymoon. 

The Honeymoon is the most exciting time for me – everything seems possible.  Here, the possibilities are endless – and I find my mind wandering into the fantastical and impossible.  For example, my “Dream List” may be that I live in a fabulous Taj-like apartment, have a cook who makes the best food I’ve ever eaten, and I can leave my life of housewifery behind when I am discovered by Bollywood and wind up playing the Evil White Lady in a series of films and television shows.  It could happen, right?  

So far, the apartment part has come true.  But marble floors are Hell on your possessions, as a dropped bracelet demonstrated the other day.  And that sea view can always be blocked, as the lawsuit filed by the owners’ association reflects.  Right now my sea view is concrete.  Hopefully, by the next year it will be replaced with a view of a parking garage.  “Hopefully”, according to my 10yo DiploBoy, who is into all things automobile and who would love, love, LOVE to watch all the expensive cars come and go at all hours of the day.  

The food is great – when I order in from the in-house restaurant.  Otherwise, I’m having some trouble cooking.  Starting a pantry from scratch is a pain in the neck.  Moreover, I’m having a difficult time finding meat of any kind, and my own vegetarian repertoire is limited to pastas and a few casseroles and salads.  So an Indian cooking class is high up on my agenda, and I am excited that I can finally get the DiploFamily to eat more vege.  That’s the silver lining, eh?  The cook part?  Still working on it.  Let me get back to you.

We already had our first excursion too – to the Gate of India and the Taj Hotel, followed by an afternoon at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (formerly the Prince of Wales Museum of Wester India).  Beautiful hotel, with an elegant feel, and lunch there was made even better by the fact that both DiploBoys used their napkins.  

The Gate of India was so majestic, and we were no sooner snapping photos when some people swooped down and bestowed bindis on us, red yarn bracelets, and gave a blessing.  For a fee, of course.  Still, it was a little fun to be “touristed”, when we aren’t exactly tourists.  The Museum was World Class, and had some beautiful Hindu sculptures and paintings.  Included in the fee is an audio guide, which is very informative and entertaining enough that DiploKid 2 held interest throughout 29 of the 25 or so exhibits – huge for a 6yo.  IMG_3800

One of my favorites, Ganesha, is due to be the center of a festival that ends later on this month.  Festival season is in full swing, which adds to the heady excitement of the Honeymoon.  With the number of festivals, events, and new places to explore, I am betting that the Honeymoon here in Mumbai will last a little longer than the usual new arrival period.  Here’s to a new and exciting relationship, Mumbai.  I look forward to getting to know you.  Even when the “Honeymoon” is over.