Thursday, January 13, 2011

Mumbai, India

I'm still digesting all that Mumbai is.... what you see, hear, smell, taste and the trials of communication.  I think it needs to be processed in a different way than I might normally judge a country and it's people. Overall it was an amazing experience and has altered me in that wonderful way that travel opens your head and heart .

One of the most interesting things to me was the dabba or tiffin( the container) wallahs. I'd seen the metal containers before at World Market. And now I know their story.
 Mumbai's 5000 dabba-wallahs work tirelessly to deliver hot lunches to office workers throughout the city.

Lunch boxes are picked up each day from homes and restaurants and carried on heads, bicycles and trains, and taken to a centralized sorting station. A sophisticated system of numbers and colors is then used to determine where every lunch must end up. More than 200,000 meals are delivered in Mumbai in this way- always on time come monsoon or searing heat.
The same intricate supply-chain system has been used for centuries and dabba-wallahs are known to take immense pride in their work. On average only one mistake is made every six million deliveries. Impressive!
We brought home a three stack dabba for packing lunch sometimes.

footnote-dabba-wallah info from Lonely Planet guide book on India

1 comment:

  1. Finally I can be assured a hot lunch everyday. It took the 30 million residents of India to convince Scott that a hot lunch is critical to a mans inner happiness.