The 1st trip.
My first day in Mumbai was very confused, but after my first experience in Hill road and already with mi business partner, things started to be clear. I am in India!
We went to have lunch in a Thai restaurant, lemongrass in Ambedkar road perpendicular to Hill road, place and street that I used a lot in my days around Mumbai.
We were around the table in the terrace without AC. You always can use indoors with AC and no smoking area or outdoor with fan and smoking area. He wanted to smoke and I hate AC. Outdoors, with pollution, and the acoustic “things”. You never know from where the mix of noise, sound, murmur, songs, music, bells, whistles, tweet, horns and muuuu… The rickshaws horns and the muuu from the cows, but the rest of the “noises” you just figure out with your imagination.
Water please. My lovely business partner ordered. For me too I said. The waiter came with a jar of water and ice. He filled our glasses. I couldn’t say thanks, why should I say thanks if he brought water from the tap and ice in India?! I looked at my business partner and said: I am not going to drink this water, not at all. Please, could you bring me a bottle of water, room temperature? And a glass without ice, thanks.
My business partner was laughing and told me: wooow! When you will speak a perfect English. This is going to be an amazing experience. Shut up! I said with a hostile face, with jetlag, sweating and inhaling the smell to the last monsoon. Ah! The smells in Mumbai, I will talk about that another day, but let’s say that is like the “noisy” you never know from where in coming the “smelly”.
Of course, no time to lose and time to make friends. He too is a people’s person. We mixed with local people and he prohibited me to interact with Spanish people. I will try. I said with a low voice and without promise anything.
It took me a month to be surrounded by Spanish. I didn’t do anything the river just brings me to them. An Indian girl (who my business partner introduce me the first week in Mumbai) told me: let’s meet for a drinks. What hard work, meeting for drinks eating for a drinks, but I said: Of course! She introduce me her Indian friends, and after the drinks, after party at home. You never know what is going on inside a Mumbai buildings , always there is a party… on the Grand floor, 2nd, on the terrace or maybe just in the common areas.
A week later she called: Come for a drink to Toto’s in Pali Naka (always Branda my neighborhood) and with an especial friend that I want to introduce you. Of course I went. There were there the lovely Indian girl and Spanish guy from Pamplona. After a couple of beers the Pamplona guy told me: there is a birthday party next week. We will be around 30 people, all mostly Spanish; do you want to join us? Of course!
Let’s get back to the first day; afterwards we met local people, we when to buy a couple things for the flat and my business partner fell in love with a black & white “folding sofa”. For what do we need that? I asked. You will see later. Friends, you can not imagine how useful that thing was, but these are the kind of details that I don’t have time to explain… I leave it to your imagination.
He dropped me home after my first day in Mumbai. Sleep well I will pick you at tomorrow at 8am, we are going for a business trip with a client to see land for a project. And he closed the door. That was all information I got. I opened the door and said; bring me a coffee!
I set the alarm at 7am, but I couldn’t sleep well, I was nervous, jetlagged, sweating, noise…..and the trip started at 8am with coffee.
I can’t explain that trip in a few phrases. I leave it to your imagination.
After that trip started my business life in Mumbai. I cancelled my Christmas trip to Spain that year because we were working on the Master Plan, our first QDesign project. RIVERSONG.