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How to Become a Mr. Bollywood Superfan in 24 Hours (Part 2)

After Part 1, the steady climb to the top of Bollywood adoration continues here. Read on, dear friends, read on… Hour 9: wedding jitters and pole dancing strippers I stand in the hotel grounds and gape, with open-mouthed wonder, at my surroundings. This place is a little bit mental. The stage, speakers and silver sequinned […]

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How To Become a Mr. Bollywood Superfan in 24 Hours (Part 1)

*Disclaimer: These are the first experiences I’ve had of accompanying any celebrity in their day to day life, and hence any overreactions should be excused merely as the internal excitement of a poor travelling Westerner. For the purposes of privacy, the celebrity in question shall, from here onwards, be referred to as Mr. Bollywood. Or […]

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Goa India threading leg beach sun

Goan Beach Politics

My introduction to the ways of the Goans started with a spool of thread. Now, when I think of thread and India in the same moment, it’s Gandhi that comes to mind; teaching the common population to become self-sufficient by spinning their own cloth, thus lifting them out of their desperate poverty. Well, in Goa there’s […]

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Saris, Sweat and ‘See You Laters’

Water has been sourced and the fans have been turned off – the power is out in Goa again. At 30 degrees but with 71 percent humidity, it’s almost the end of the season here, and beneath the casual behaviour of the vendors, there’s an definite sense of urgency. Who will go back to the […]

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Settling into the Indian South

From the moment I stepped off the plane in Chennai, I knew I was going to like South India. The air was warmer and more comfortable, the streets were cleaner, and people were happier – not to mention the strange absence of beggars wandering around. We’d left the North in somewhat of a rush, with […]

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A Snapshot of Southern India

The sand and salt are curling my newly short hair. My sunburn is pink and red in patches along calves and shoulder blades. The sound of the sea is full in my ears as I lean back in a wicker chair at the Juice Shack, perched on the cliffs of Varkala. For the first time […]

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Cycling in Bharatpur, India

Beggars, Bedbugs and the Back of the Taj

I always knew that India was going to be filled to the brim with tiny hands asking for food and painfully skinny women asking for money. What I didn’t expect was the intensity with which it’s thrust into your face. Rajasthan wasn’t that bad to start with, but things suddenly escalated in Jaipur, and it […]

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Pushkar India hippies

Haircuts, Hippies and the Pushy Priests of Pushkar

For the last few months, I’ve been steadily realising how much my hair annoys me. During the freezing London winter, it’s always too long, getting stuck underneath scarves or bag straps, turning into a static flyaway mess. It seems to be becoming drier and more foreign when I see it in the mirror – so […]

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Jaisalmer, India: Coloured Powder, Camel Racing & Gandhi’s Watch

Going abroad is great. Within no time, you seem to have forgotten what day it is, and it doesn’t even seem to matter. Time begins to evaporate, and you’ll spend hours in a rooftop cafe, sipping a lassi, listening to the birds chirp and the dogs bark… Unfortunately, the difficulty with this disassociation between you […]

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A Very Indian Birthday

On the morning of my 24th birthday, I awoke to red ants crawling in my toothpaste and a broken toilet seat. I turned over and groaned; after a few days respite, my stomach was making its ridiculous gurgling noises again. A very strange place for a birthday…   Our group of intrepid travellers was in a little village […]

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