Archive for Juli, 2006

Chronicles of a Sightseeing Tour

Sonntag, Juli 30th, 2006

Like any good tourist, I decided to go on a sightseeing tour in Bangalore, together with Verena. Like any good tourist, I booked one at the KSTDC, the Karnataka State Tourism and Development Corporation. This is the offical tourist agency of Karnataka. We booked an all-day tour (half-day tours were not available on weekends), which was scheduled to start at 7:15 am.

So I got up at 5 am (well, I set my alarm clock at 5 am, and got up at 5:20 :)), and we set off with our driver (we figured it would be easier than getting a rickshaw this early in the morning). Well, I called it a chronicle, so:

5:00 Wake up.

5:20 Get up, shower, eat an apple as breakfast

6:00 Leave for the KSTDC headquarters (Driver, the day before: „Takes us at least an hour“)

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TOTW: Food

Freitag, Juli 21st, 2006

You might be wondering what you have to eat, should you ever come to India. Well, inBangalore, you can get everything. There is, of course, the Indian food. North Indian and South Indian, but I don’t find a big difference between them. As far as I know, they use different spices, but I still think the food is very similar. Then, you get all the other Asian food, especially Chinese food is very often found in restaurants. And you can also get European and American food. However, I yet have to find a Schnitzel here :).

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Pictures

Sonntag, Juli 16th, 2006

Finally! My pictures are online at http://pictures.dreiersoftware.de. I haven’t been able to sift through all the pictures of my trips yet, so they will come online as soon as I get them ready. Meanwhile, enjoy what I already put there!

Mysore

Sonntag, Juli 16th, 2006

So, this weekend I went to Mysore, about 140 km west of Bangalore. Mysore is famous for its sandalwood, its silk, and its incense. I got all three :). But let’s start at the beginning…

I decided only on Monday that it would be a greate idea to go to Mysore, for a one-day trip. So I started by picking out a train to go there. Bangalore and Mysore are connected very well, so I could go by train, by bus, or rent a car and a driver. I planned to do this very cheap, so I picked out the Mysore Express, leaving at 6:30 from the main city station.

What I did not know then was that there is a train ticket shop directly in Koramangala, so I went to the main station to get my tickets. I wasn’t the only one who had this idea, and I had to wait about 45 minutes to get to the counter, the last few minutes fending off Indians who wanted to get in line before me („Sir, 8 o’click train“ – it was 7:45 and the queue very long). Fortunately, a cop was standing there, so I finally managed to get to the counter.

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TOTW: Commercials

Freitag, Juli 14th, 2006

They are big. They are everywhere. They are…ads. And Bangalore has a lot of them. Most ads here in Bangalore are hand-painted and they come in two variations:

  • Large billboards, which are just some type of fabric over a metal frame. They so not seem to be very strong, so after a bit of wind or rain you can see some of them ripped to bits.
  • Ads painted on the walls of buildings and in (stone) fences

The hand-painted ads often feature nice and artistic drawings, and generally all ads are very people-centric – you rarely see an ad which shows only the product and not a Bollywood star (and always a star, not just someone) presenting the product. Also, building ads are very common („60% complete“).

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Apologies

Samstag, Juli 8th, 2006

Hi there! I haven’t written anything for quite a while, due to a combination of technical problems and a general lack of time. My sinceres apologies for that! Now I managed to catch up, and I even introduced a new category, the topic of the week. So, you might want to catch up on your reading for the last few weeks.

And thanks for not sending me any hateful mails ;). Although…I hope that does not mean that noone reads this blog anymore…

TOTW: Animals

Freitag, Juli 7th, 2006

Bangalore’s animal population seems to consist of mainly three species: cattle, dogs, and ravens. Cows, being a holy animal in the Hindu religion, roam the streets mostly free. Sometimes they are accompanied by someone, or bound to a tree, but mostly they just walk around – or stand on the streets. Yes, a lot of times you can see a cow standing or even laying right in the middle of the street, and traffic just (tries) to flow around it.

The dogs, on the other hand, are much less liked, but much more common. The dogs are all medium-sized, mostly brown, and I am sure they are mostly cross-breeds. They usually just sleep somewhere on side of the streets, or try to find something edible in the litter laying around. Bangaloreans don’t like them, and especially at nighttime people carry large sticks with them… The dogs also proudly take their part in creating the unique Bangalorean soundscape. Barking is especially heard in the evening and the night. Unfortunately for the dogs, Indians do not break for them like they do for cows, so frequently they can be found as roadkill on the major streets :(.

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Singapore

Dienstag, Juli 4th, 2006

It’s always good to have friends in all parts of the world. At least temporarily, I also have this advantage. As two of my fellow students, Jochen and Joachim, currently work for SAP Singapore, I took the chance to visit this city/country from Thursday til Sunday. The cheapest airline to get there seems to be JetStar Asia, a Singapore based low-fare airline. So I paid my 12,000 Rs (240 €) and saved the hotel costs by staying with Jochen. Thanks to Dominik, his landlord, for allowing this!

The only disadvantage was that the flight for Singapore left at 3 am IST, so I did not fetch much sleep that night, only two hours before the flight and a few uncomfortable minutes on the flight itself. And since we arrived at 10:15 am Singaporean time, after a 4 hour flight, I did not get the chance to sleep there… Oh, well! I met up with Jochen at SAP Singapore and we went to lunch together.

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