I’m not sure whether you’ve been to India, but it’s not an easy trip in any respect. It takes me about 30 hours to get there. That’s San Francisco to Portland, Portland to Amsterdam, and, finally Amsterdam to Mumbai. Plus, there’s an hour-long taxi ride to the hotel once I land in Mumbai. Then, while in India I’m running around all over the place. 12 – 16 hour train rides. Hungry in places where there’s no food…or there is food, but I’m afraid to eat it. Walking around for hours in the sometimes unbearably hot village. So, my trips require a bit of pre-departure preparation.
About a month before the trip, I start on a pro-biotic to get the stomach ready for battle. I also start taking a multi-vitamin. No idea if any of this stuff actually works, but it feels like a good move, and definitely helps psychologically. I also pack 2-3 small kits for the trip. One has the items for the plane – emergen-c, ayr nasal gel (this stuff is awesome, and requires you to stick your finger up your nose several times during the flight), homeopathic anti jet-lag pills. The other 2 have all my goodies for when I’m in India. There’s the preventative kit – probiotics, multi-vitamin, grapefruit seed extract (10 drops in water after every meal…yes, I’m a bit paranoid!), anti-malarials, a shitload of hand sanitizer. And, then there’s the in-case-things-go wrong kit – z-pack, lots of immodium, pepto bismol, advil, first aid kit and some other stuff. And, I bring a few food/snacks in my bag for those situations where I’m too paranoid to eat the mystery curry – tons of macro-bars (meal substitute bars) and beef jerky.
Am I crazy…sure, a bit…maybe more. Am I afraid of India…sure, a bit…mostly of the food, because I got really sick on my first trip and can’t completely forget about that miserable experience. But, a little bit of fear is part of what makes a trip to India so exciting! A trip to India is not for the feint of heart, but is definitely an experience that shouldn’t be missed.
I'm in Mumbai at the moment, and will be in India until around Jan 30. I will continue to update the blog with mohinders news, stories, photos, and random ramblings. Stay tuned.