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New from the MySociety genii:, capsule the curiously-capitalised PlaceOpedia. Think Google Maps ? Wikipedia. Brilliant. Except that, as I write, all the links read
26 April, 2006 at 2:28 pm
I’ve just backtracked all the way to discover why you’re in India. What a great oportunity. If only the Ri hadn’t got rid of Bipin then they’d have someone who’d feel at home there. 😉
29 April, 2006 at 3:58 am
I have to confess, my trip to India resulted in a very similar first impression. Mumbai-by-the-airport was like any other airport I’d ever been to, including hotel stylings and prices. Taking a taxi to the hotel (about 40 miles south), leaving that oasis of Western fakery and travelling through much poorer areas including what seemed nothing more than a shanty town, was a real eye-opener. And I’m a little ashamed to say unnerving to the point of extreme discomfort. I really wanted to go home at one point (hence the shame).
But I got over it, with the help of my much less unnerved travelling companion, the good Dr Bartos. And after throwing ourselves into the middle of it (deepest Mumbai in the middle of rush-hour, shoulder-to-shoulder with tens of thousands of locals on foot, great fun) I felt much better.
One word of advice: if you know any obscure foreign languages, brush up on them before tackling the tourist traps. Dr B was able to turn away the local, er, “sales people” by speaking nothing but Czech. As the next nearest white guy and speaking no foreign languages I made the easy fallback target. It was about then I discovered that it’s remarkably easy to fake Klingon…
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