Soon enough after my last post a rather tanned, surprisingly blonde, travelling pants clad Sara arrived at the airport and after a rather emotional reuniting we hopped in a taxi to the city centre.
The taxi driver was our first taste of being scammed as our argument not to pay for a return journey through a toll booth was completely ignored and we lost out on about 30 rupees but decided it was best to pick our battles – not stress over 3 British pence.
We arrived at the Abode Mumbai – a gorgeous boutique hotel with wooden carvings, old street signs and colonial style decor all thrown together in a super stylish way and were taken to our beautiful cave of a room with filtered water in copper jugs and linen bedsheets. A few of Waitrose’s finest pre mixed g&t cans and salted cashews later (naturally) Sara and I headed on recommendation to a buzzing local bar – cafe Mondegar – or Mondy’s and caught up on 6 months apart. Keen to fit in as many recommendations as possible in our short time in the city we bar hopped to Woodside (very shoreditch vibes) opposite the beautiful Regal cinema and sipped on kingfisher beers. We eventually met Varun – the supposed manager of mumbai’s football team and fiancé to a part owner of the Taj Mahal palace hotel…. whilst his personal tales seemed incredibly far fetched we left with a sheet of recommendations that actually turned out to be really quite brilliant (as some future posts will describe- I’m just leaving this post as a bit of a cliffhanger until I get better wifi!)
Having promised to wake up early the next day we finally rose at 10:30… and after plugging my phone into the wrong kind of plug I caused a power cut in our windowless room so we spent the morning in complete darkness, left with our passports locked in the safe until an incredibly lovely cleaner managed to remind us!
Refuelled on a rice pudding and banana breakfasts however we began our first proper day in Mumbai well rested and super excited for the trip ahead!