Bangalore

Bangalore is an interesting and rapidly expanding town.

It is now a town in excess of 8,000,000 people.  When I lived here it was the size of the city of Portland.

It is the Silicon valley of India with the presence of Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Phillips, AMD, Toshiba, Sony as well financial giants such as Goldman Sachs.  The growing rate here is tremendous.  I saw in the newspapers yesterday that the comanies plan to hire nearly 200,000 more people in the next 4 months.

The outerskits of the city is getting built up very fast.  There are many gated communities.  The prices are very high.  One of my nephews is building a house 4500 sft at a cost of nearly $ 200,000.  We saw that house under construcion yesterday.

There are many many shopping malls with just about everything available.  The old part of the city is very congested and they are building a metro system for easier travel.  This is suposed to be ready in 2 years along with a new International Airport to be ready in early 2008.

The city is expensive for those who live here and make a modest salary, but rather cheap for those from overseas.  To give you an idea, a kilogram of tomotaoes costs Rs. 35 – 50 (or just about $ 0.45 per pound).  Starbucks latte costs Rs. 45 (or just about $ 1.00). Autorickshaws (3 wheeled vehicles can take you anywhere in town for Rs. 20- 50.  Gasoline is expensive $ 5.00 a gallon.

People are in a hurry, you hear a lot of Indian music, and some top 40 type music as well.  They are totally inundated with Mobiles.  My nephew’s havs 4 phones, my sister’s house 4 phones mostly mobile.  I saw a man riding a motor bike, taking on the cell phone and entering some data on a pad – a rather scary site.

Megha

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