Spending two weeks doing CSM courses in India. Here are a few mostly non-agile non-scrum non-professional notes:

Two 9 hour flights in a row is still long.

On the way into Delhi, they announced that they had to fumigate the airplane before landing! A moment later you could smell the perfumed insecticide. Turns out it smells a lot better than Delhi, which seems to be downwind of a giant forest fire somewhere. Everything in the airport smells vaguely of smoke.

On the upper deck business class seats in a KLM 747, they had built-in massage seats. Wowee. Too bad I was too addled to actually use them. They did vibrate because I checked before we took off. After that I just forgot about it until now.

Arriving in Delhi I had to get to the Eaton Smart transit hotel in the airport because I fly to Kolkata tomorrow. So they met me at the gate, and the guy, Narendra, I think, except I’m pretty sure there was a ‘g’ in there somewhere, made me wait until I was in no danger of zipping quickly through the immigration line, and then he escorted me to the immigration line. The immigration guy, when I finally got to him, spent at least five minutes figuring out that I had made a mistake and put my arrival date where it had either visa expiry or passport expiry. Dude, it’s a braino, which is a typo that comes from your brain.

After immigration, I go through customs where I don’t declare anything, as usual. How do they catch smugglers, anyway? Then Narendra-with-a-g-somewhere took me to a separate baggage screening place where he explained that I could not take my checked baggage into the hotel. I freaked, since I’ve been traveling 24 hours and I’m just a bit wilted in spite of my fumigation. So he finagled and got me through. Almost another calamity as the person doing the paperwork at this weird inspection stop couldn’t figure out from my travel itinerary what my flight number was for tomorrow. After the required five minutes staring at it, she finally asked and I pointed to it. Sigh.

So my bags get screened there and little security stickers get put over the zipper openings and we then walk somewhere else, where some military guys need to see my itinerary for tomorrow. Made it through there, and then another checkpoint, and then up the elevator to the hotel. Arriving there, the military guy who is clocking in guests and baggage (at 1am) officially rips off the security tags and I’m in. Whoa. No way I could beat this security because you need to be able to analyze it in a rational way first.

Another day, another Indian hotel bathroom where the water from the shower runs over the whole bathroom floor. The solution seems to be to put a drain in the main bathroom floor rather than just separate the shower from everything else. I mean, really, after 9000 years this is the best they got?

One of the best parts of India is the newspaper.

  • “Woman Throws Sandal at MP”. In the first sentence of the article is the important note “…and fell short of its target.”
  • Three elected guys in the congress of Karnataka are watching porn on cellphones during congressional session. Behind and above them, in the gallery, is a TV film crew which films it over their shoulders. They kind of resign the next day.
  • Some guy was fired from his job 25 years ago for committing adultery. This week, the court decided that his firing should stand. Way to go, swift justice. I wonder what would have happened if they had decided he was wrongly fired? 25 years of back pay?
  • Check it out: India is bracing for a drop to a mere 7% yearly growth rate in the economy.
  • Woman in a remote village travels home to husband’s home, then storms out two days later, refusing to come back until he or his parents install a toilet. The village takes up a collection and he puts in the toilet. Then about 80 other village girls leave their houses due to lack of toilets. Then the original girl gets a huge award for “raising awareness of hygiene in the remote rural areas.” And how will she use the reward money? To build a bathroom.

OK, enough for now. On to Bangalore this afternoon after a great course in Kolkata (46 people!) and a really fun one in Pune.

Bye for now!

2 thoughts on “

  1. You sure are looking at the best India has to offer. After 200 years of British rule and 60+ years of “corrupt” democratic government, this still seems to be an achievement to us, Indians.

    If you compare your life in a developed nation to one in India, there is no comparison. However, I doubt the newspapers and the justice is any better in other parts of the world. I just heard the The Sun may go down :)

  2. Hi Sarbjit,

    You are totally right, every place has their good and bad and funny and odd things. I’m traveling in India because I like the country and the people. The newspapers have a unique style that I enjoy very much. Lots of things happen to me when i travel that are incomprehensible to me, and I know that the same is true when people travel to the States.

    alan

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