An update from Elizabeth, MBA and Master’s of Arts Management ’12, who traveled to India with the Cox Global Leadership Program:
11:15 a.m. (India time) – WE’RE IN INDIA! Pile out of the plane and head through customs. Pleased to find BA did indeed pull our luggage and put it on the right flight.
Bus ride from international terminal to domestic. Catch a first glimpse of an Indian city – or at least the area around the airport. City is hazy, hot, and humid. Slums stand right up against the walls of the airport, brightly colored clothes hung on drying lines standing out against the tin roofs and stucco-like walls.
2 p.m. - Check in at Kingfisher (a company we’ll visit when we’re back here in about a week) and gratefully collapse into seats at gate A6. Some wander the terminal, though there’s not much to see or buy. Food court has KFC and Domino’s. This terminal is much nicer than the international one. About half the group naps in the seats. Eric gets a kebab from Curry Kitchen and the jokes about the possible consequences of eating “street food” begin.
6 p.m. – Land in Bangalore – FINALLY! Greeted by our tour guide, Johan (he pronounces it Cho-han,) who gets us on the air-conditioned bus and headed to our hotel. Takes about 2 hours. We are smelly, exhausted, exhilarated. Everything is colorful, messy, disorienting, beautiful, greener than expected, and both wildly different and somewhat the same all at once.
8 p.m. – Arrive at hotel. Rebekah, my roommate, and I head straight to the room. It’s incredibly nice, and we were all upgraded to “premium” rooms. We have a balcony! Can’t wait to see view in daylight tomorrow. Rebekah tries to find free wifi (nope) while I shower, then she showers while I Febreeze everything I’ve worn for the past 36 hours. Dinner at Mosaic in the hotel. Expensive, but we all agree worth the convenience. Tandoori chicken, garlic naan for me, plus tastes of spicy everything (I’m a self-proclaimed spice pansy), and a samosa.
11 p.m. – A few of us wander outside the hotel to see what there is to see. Answer: nothing. In fact, much of the lit-up store fronts are turned off, so it’s quite dark, and there are only a few people out walking (though still plenty of traffic). We find an ATM and grab some rupees for the week, then wander back. Tomorrow we visit Essilor and MeritTrac, starting with a 9 a.m. pick-up time. Time to get our bodies on India time!