India - 2007
I got the chance to do my first visit to India in the autumn of 2007. My destination was the Indian Silicon Valley - the big city of Bangalore.
I spent most of the week just by working at our office that was located on the outskirts of the town in the recently established technology park of Whitefield. It is probably going to be an impressive area in the future but now it was basically a huge construction yard. The hotel was a walking distance from the office but as the place was basically in the middle of nowhere there were not many activities in the evening. On the other hand this also meant that you did not have suffer from the infernal traffic jams - it could take up to two hours to commute from the city center!
After a week of busy work I spent the weekend in the downtown area. You can see most of the main attractions in two days - even though Bangalore is not the main tourist attraction there are still quite a few interesting spots there. There are many impressive temples in the city - the huge complex of Iskcon being the most memorable one I visited. Additionally there is a lot of interesting architecture from the colonial era.
When it comes to traffic Bangalore must be the craziest city I've experienced so far. Walking is not a pleasant experience - using the numerous auto-rickshaws is the preferred method of transportation.
The wide variety of local food was a really pleasant surprise. I experimented with lots of strange dishes - almost all of them being delicious. There are obviously big differences between the Northern and Southern kitchens. One thing you could not avoid was cricket (especially when they had the world cup in South Africa at the moment) - I somehow understood the basics after watching several games but still the game was too slow for my taste.
Anyway an interesting introduction to this huge country - obviously one week was too short period to experience India properly!
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