Murmeli goes India

An AIESEC traineeship in Hyderabad, India

First couple of days

I arrived on Saturday, late in the evening. That night me and Pike had some tea with Clare and we talked about stuff. Clare is going away next month for a trip to the Himalays. How cool is that!! Sad to let her go, though. Michael and Eduardo were watching the match on Road n:o 3 with some other trainees in their flat there. Sad night for Ed, who is from Brasil.

The next day we slowly started getting to know the quirks, habits, tricks, do’s and don’t’s of Hyd. First I went to the shop with Michael and Eduardo. Did not have any money coz there had been no possibility to exchange any the previous night. Eduardo kindly lent me 1000 rupees (18 Euros). We walked for about 500 meters from our flat and we saw different kinds of shops. You have people selling stuff straight out of a carriage. Then there are the pro-sellers who have their own booth. Then there are the first real, physical shops, which extend towards the street with different kinds of shelves and tables. We, however, went to a bigger shop, which was also very Western. It was more or less like going to the local Sale or K-kauppa in Jyvaskyla. I just bought some milk and instant coffee. Michael bought some cooking material. We were going out to eat that day so there was no need to buy real food anyways, according to Eduardo.

Our next trip was lunch, which we had on Road n:o 1. It was a vegeterian restaurant with real Indian food. Don’t remember anymore exactly what we had, but we had at least some Indian ice-cream and then there was the bread, chapati. You cut pieces of the bread and use that to eat the food you have in little bowls. We ate like Indians eat, that is, using only the right hand and drinking so that the glass does not touch the lips, so you kind of drop the water in your mouth. The food was not too spicy for my taste.

After lunch we went to buy a padlock for our door because the lock we have there now is not working properly. Then I went with Pike and Clare to the city again. There is a shopping mall called Hyderabad Central in the centre. It looks as if Indian people had invaded CitySokos. Really, it does. There are a lot of stuff here that is Western, even though you also get fooled to think so by all the English written onto signposts and ads. Sometimes you get people who speak very good English with no disturbing accent. If they don’t speak English they direct you to someone who does. Lastly, in the evening, we went for dinner at Rohi’s, which is a very nice restaurant close to our flat. We were trying to go to a pub afterwards but it was closed for renovation. We decided to buy beer at a stall right next to the pub and go back to the flat. The beer I had was Kingfisher, a good Indian lager.

You might think now that all this is really boring, writing about going to lunch or buying instant coffee. It is not boring. It will take some time until I get used to being here, and right now everything is interesting. Well sometimes it is interesting but of course many things are just annoying and frustrating.

I’m thinking that I need to get one of the auto riksha rides on video. You get an adventure everytime you step into one of those things. So far I’ve met only good drivers, but it is common that they fool tourists who don’t know places and how much it costs to get somewhere. Today I came back from work on an auto (riksha) at a time there was an awful lot of traffic. The air gets even hotter when it is toxicated with the fumes of tens of autos and cars. The busses are quite something too. You usually get on a bus without the bus stopping. They stop at bus stops unless they are full, which they often are. The traffic is full of honking as the autos and cars and busses try to squeeze into every little possible hole they see in that sea of metal in front of them.

I have not taken too many pictures because there are so many people and I hate flashing my camera to them. When you get a father with his child in his arms coming to you asking for bread, you’re not necessarily even in a mood to take pictures. I’m not sure yet if I’m able to get the pictures online at this ‘net cafe but I’ll ask soon.

I’m feeling confident that I’ll get used to being here. Sooner or later I will need a break from the city though. We were thinking about doing a weekend trip in two weeks. There are also places in here where you can get some peace, like the Golconda Fort, which I should check out at some point. Next weekend there is football which we will surely see together. Tomorrow is July 4. which is a day the three Americans downstairs to us will celebrate. Being with the other trainees has been and most likely will also continue to be the best thing to do here.


July 3, 2006 - Posted by | Arrival in India

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