Friday, October 14, 2011

Work, Prostitutes, Work and Play. Mumbai and Goa

  • Two 10 hour long days from Rajasthan to Thane, which is just north of Mumbai. It is Mumbai's St Albans, or something like that. It was not particularly a place of required visitation, but it is a place of importance as far as I am concerned in that it is where some of the growing team of colleagues who work for Bikini Lists Ltd operate from. Bikini Lists is a firm started 10 years ago that provides mailing lists of all the international creative/media commissioners. It was something the our industry desperately needed then and with some help we started it. My involvement is not that great nowadays on a day to day level, although I am on the board. It was good to meet Vaibav again after 6 years and the team that he has built. They are so friendly and enthusiastic for what they do. The very idea that any of their data on Bikini is not right they find a personal insult…thus it is way over 99% accurate and never the cause of complaint.
VB and some of his team

Durga Festival Temple. It was all going on as I was in Thane
A snap VB took of Batty and I from his bike as I left for Mumbai

I had a great dinner with VB, as he is known, and his Parents. A lovely evening that tested VB's translation skills to the limit, but I got a clear sense of pride and delight at the deserved success that he is now having.

On to Mumbai. Again it was work related as we (Illustration Ltd) want to try and find an agent there to represent our interests in India. Next year it will be the world's third largest economy and in a few decades probably the largest, so it is important to start learning their ways and to start educating them about our service etc. We have the honour and delight to represent India's foremost illustrator, Shailesh Khandeparkar, and we had a very enjoyable lunch discussing many matters.
An amazing bridge they have just build going around the out side of the city in the sea

This is the house you build for your family when you make it big in India...worth billions

The Prostitutes in the header was just to get you to read this far…it was nothing that juicy, but an observation that the 3 taxi's I took, all drivers asked me if I wanted a woman. I am sure it will happen in Thailand as well, but I had not ever had it offered quite so blatantly before. My single bed in the humble hotel was a very peaceful and comfortable place…no such complications I assure you.

I enjoyed leaving Mumbai as much as I enjoyed being there. A great city, but I was really looking forward to Goa.

The road to take is the old road, the N17, which is beautiful from only a few miles outside Mumbai. I was not necessarily expecting this, but it was a delightful 2 days drive to Goa.

Early morning valley view on the road south
Had to have the top box rack welded for the 4th with great struts supporting it.

More Lushness

And More Nh17 delights 

One night in Palolem, the capital, before heading on to Agonda. A small peaceful resort in the south. The season had only just begun and the resort I found was the only one open. That was fine and they were great people running it.

My hut was on stilts nearest the sea and gave a perfect home for 4 nights. The bar was a stumble away, the food delicious and the sea a lazy 1 minute walk across the beach.

View from the little balcony

The Catch, I lent a bit of a hand as they hauled the nets into the beach.

I was tinkering with Batty on the first morning there, tappets, clutch sort of things, then I was bid good morning by Susana, as it turned out to be. A short chat and a suggestion to join for a beer when I was finished was made. About 1/2 an hour later I took my oily black hands to the bar and joined Susana.

It was a great meeting as for the next couple of days she became my local guide and companion, all innocent you understand, but it was great to have the good company of someone who has been here for 6 years and knows all the best local sites and places to eat, to say nothing of local gossip etc.

She is a fabulous clothes designer and sells them in her shop in Agonda. There are 3 rules for her clothes, you have to be wealthy, slim and sexy, otherwise she wont sell them to you…nothing discriminatory about that.

The shop is not open yet for the season, so lucky H had her trailing me around her favourite bike rides (she has a scooter), up in the hills, game parks and beaches…It was really living the life for a couple of days.

Susana on Batty