The week is really going fast, and I am starting to really enjoy India. I am seeing lots of great sites and even though the lectures are irrelevant to me I still find some of them interesting.
Thursday started off with a lecture on what I thought would be a comprehensive view on the life of Mahatma Ghandi; instead it was an excruciating look at his view on economics. This lengthy lecture compared the views of James Smith (The father of modern economics?) and Ghandi.(The Holistic view) Smith believes that true wealth comes having the ability to attain all your 'needs' but, also be able to purchase your 'wants'. However Ghandi believed that true wealth stems from being able to accommodate the poor and still be able to self sustain.
After the lecture we jumped on the coach and made a quick visit to the British Council. On the inside the building was really modern and filled English delegates, which was interesting because other than ourselves we haven't seen any English natives since we arrived. Two videos and a speech later we left the British Council and returned to HR College, we then had our first Hindi lesson and we learnt a variety of phrases such as...
Kripa Karke - Please
Bahut Dhanyawad - Thank You Very Much
Aapka Swagat - You Are Welcome
Kisine Meri Gaadi Chura Li - Someone Stole My Car J
After the Hindi lesson we had lunch, which was amazing because we were able to see some of it made in front us on the hotplate. We then got on the coaches and went to the Bombay Stock Exchange, it was opened by Bill Clinton and we went up to the 19th floor and had lectures on the growing superpower India is becoming. After the lectures we went in to the dining room which had the most amazing view of the whole of Mumbai.
We returned to the hotel and a local told us that there was an immersion festival on Chowpatty beach and that we should go and see it. I was really looking forward to seeing Mumbai religious culture firsthand, we all got ready and took a taxi to the beach, after an argument with the driver we paid and made our way to the beach. The atmosphere was amazing; there was singing, dancing, games and food being cooked. During this activity Hindus pray to their God and say prayers and the set their statues of their God into the sea and let it float away. After taking pictures with the locals, (one asked me to flex my bicepK) we took a taxi to Calabar Causeway and went to a restaurant (Kyaola) the food was really nice, I ordered the butter chicken curry and naan bread. Once we were totally filled we drove back to the hotel and went straight to bed as we had to be up at 8 am to go to Borivali National Park in the suburbs of Mumbai which is the only city in the world which has its national park within the city limits. So tomorrow promises to be a good day...