In continuation of my tourist odyssey around Mumbai, I planned a trip to Gorai Island. There is actually more there than you can do in one day, with a theme park and a water park existing side by side in true Indian paradoxical fashion with a huge golden meditation pagoda, not to mention the reasonably clean beach and romantic evening horse and cart rides on the other side of the Island.
I gathered my friends and various children and jumped on the Borivali ferry on a mission to visit Esselworld, Mumbai’s premier theme park. I can’t deny that I felt a little apprehension about the trip after the recent Imagica theme park disaster in Khopoli. There a roller coaster derailed – the story of how many people got actually injured/killed/gruesomely decapitated differed according to whichever questionable social media news source popped up on your mobile device.
Anyway, unperturbed by these horror stories and the April heat, we set off in search of adrenaline and ice cream. The day was a success with both substances pleasantly coursing through our bodies by the end of it. With heads spinning and ears ringing from the kid’s (happy) screams we all jumped back on the ferry and finished off the day in culinary style at the Borivali Byriani Centre (highly recommended!).
My next trip to Gorai wasn’t such a great success. I visited the water park with my daughter, a friend and her older daughter. The water park is awesome fun…. until your one year old has massive diarrhoea right at the top of the family slide. What could I do? I just scooped her up and made a run for it, but the damage was already done in the form of a big stinky brown puddle that several people had definitely already stood in.
As I hosed myself and my daughter down in the nearest toilet I could find, a group of teenage girls stood there laughing and holding their noses. Thankfully, motherhood has the quality of removing any sense of shame and embarrassment from your life – even in overtly public situations (always the child’s scenario of choice for their most ‘special’ moments).
With a knowing smile I mustered my best hindi and took great pleasure informing them that inevitably, one day they would also become mothers; in which case, it was a certainty that at some point they would find themselves wiping poo off their very own little darling, while teenage girls look on sniggering. They stopped for a moment and considered the notion they were now laughing at was in fact the fate of their future selves. At this point, the grins wiped as cleanly from their faces as the poo had been from my child. Several of them solemnly swore there and then that they would never, ever have children (well that’s one way to keep the population down) while the rest shrugged and told me that’s the maid’s job. Hmmmm….
What could be better after a mild dose of public humiliation than a visit to the Global Vipassana Pagoda to restore one’s sense of zen and tranquility? Being the world’s largest stone dome structure, built in an elegant Burmese architectural style and enveloped in a blanket of glimmering gold – I’m pretty sure the Buddha would be most impressed by this building which was built in gratitude to his teachings on the eradication of suffering.
Here are some photos….