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Subject:  Re: How to pinch a rupee Date:  3/23/2013  6:25 PM
Author:  desertdaveataol Number:  872694 of 902164

Another excerpt:

After getting our fill of the slums, we boarded a local train at Mahalaxmi traveled from this station (for 5 rupees) to experience the life of a typical Mumbaikar and travelled about 6 stops to Churchgate Railway Station- another one of Mumbai's busiest hubs on the local commuter train network.

We jumped off the cars shortly after the train arrived at Churchgate Station. We were greeted by a phalanx of shoe shine “boys” (some rather elderly) offering their services for 7 rupees a pair. They advertise their services by clacking their brushes and creating their own overlay of racket. Unfortunately, I wasn’t wearing leather shoes so their cacophony was wasted in my case.

We had timed our arrival at the Churchgate Railway Station to see the dabba-wallahs, members of the Mumbai Tiffin Box Suppliers Association make their food deliveries. This event starts taking place at 11:30 sharp. At 11:15, a man gets off a train carrying a two meter long wood try on his head filled with lunch containers and lays it down on the platform. Our tour guide from yesterday walks a group of tourists to this, and points, while explaining what they are seeing. Then they boarded a train to head to the dhobi ghat. I realize that this event was planned to give them a feeling of authenticity without exposing them to the full chaos of the real thing. (And the Chinese male tourists involved took photos showing how they would look getting off of the train without realizing that it was the woman’s car they were using – complete with a large image of a woman’s head next to his).
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