What to do if you NEED to “go!” Public toilets in India
There are simply things not done in polite society… and yet when there are no easy ways to do what most consider rather private activities, it becomes a very public matter.
My favourite walking spot is the promenade with a view of the Bandra Sea Link. I’ll never forget one time I watched a mother patiently help her young daughter learn how to squat and defecate over a drainage hole. If you live on the streets, it is certainly a better alternative than many other options.
So the other day, I was delighted to see colourfully painted public toilets for men and women… set up to service the labour community that has sprung up next to the Sea Link promenade to build the new metro station. How fabulous!
Except, despite appearances and it being a terrific initiative, they don’t work. At all.
Instead, they stand locked, testament to a great idea with infuriatingly poor execution. Clearly money was spent to set them up, but not to actually keep them functioning.
It is hard not to be cynical. Until GST, on every transaction an additional 0.5% cess was paid to raise funds for “Clean India” i.e. Swachh Bharat… which is best seen in propaganda paintings supporting the government agenda of the day rather than real change.
As a woman, I dare you to find a decent public toilet outside of fancy malls…. that works.
However I remain optimistic. I take hope in the efforts of individuals who work to improve things… despite the odds.
PS – Interestingly this post prompted racist hate mail, naturally by a man, offended that I was concerned that time, money, effort went into something which could serve public good but doesn’t. Because after all “Foreigners like you have only to say shit things about India like any typical Westerners.” Hmm… I suppose having a life linked directly with India since 1990, nearly 20 years calling India home means nothing and I’m not entitled to have an opinion as my origins are outside India. I wonder if that same individual, if living in say Canada, would believe he has no right to be concerned about something he finds potentially positive but frustratingly not fulfilling its mandate?
Whisky Lady – August 2017
August was a bit of a catch-up month for Whisky Lady tastings… chock full of notes from July’s excesses with even more from those sessions to come next month.
August sessions were held with each Mumbai based whisky clubs – yet two were of a decidedly social bent!
The Original’s session featured an Islay Trio:
- Bunnahabhain Eirigh Na Greine 46.3% – Interesting to compare notes of our Batch #5 tasting with Batch #1
- Bowmore Gold Reef 43% – What a contrast to our Whisky Ladies experience!
- Ardbeg Uigeadail 52.4% – A proper peat bog, wildfire chilli on the palate and fab long finish (sampled earlier too!)
The Whisky Ladies turned two! With a celebration of whisky women fellowship…
And finally on 31st August 2017, we had our Bombay Malt & Cigar partners night where we explored a trio of single grains:
- Girvan 8 years (2006) Cask 532398 46% (Berrys’)
- Strathclyde 25 year (1990/2016) DL11335 51.5% (Douglas Laing’s Old Particular)
- Invergordon 28 year (1987/2015) DL 11004 56.5% (Douglas Laing’s Old Particular)
Followed by two Indian whiskies:
- Sula’s Eclipse Blended Whisky 42.8%
- Rampur 43%
I shared tasting notes from our July 2017 American Westland trio of:
- Westland Peated 46% – Curiously shy peat, ginger honey, bacon and smoke
- Westland American Oak 46% – Sweet creamy banana split, dangerously drinkable. My current favourite!
- Westland Sherry 46% – Tropical fruits, mocha toffee with a lovely finish!
Our July Monsoon Malts & More evening covered an eclectic range with:
- Eddu Silver 40% – Buckwheat whisky from Bretagne, France
- R & B Distillers – New entrant bottling interesting whiskies
- The Exceptional – Craft Distillers Sutcliffe and Ex Macallan’s Willie Phillips new baby
- Highland Park 12 year 40% – An echo of the old 18 year favourite
- Finlaggan Cask Strength 58% – A most enjoyable mystery Islay
Check out what can be squeezed into just a couple of minutes “Speed Tasting” impressions with:
- Hyde Single Grain 46% – Roasted wood, fruity, clean with spice
- Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye 45% – Piquant, bright, young and sweet like chewing Juicy Fruit gum!
- Pikesville 110 Proof Straight Rye 55% – Vanilla, flowers, fruit, nuts with a clear Rye quality, savoury finish
- House Blend – Amazing balance between sherry sweet and smoky peat
- Midleton Dair Ghaelach 58.7% – Milk chocolate, banana, dash of coffee, spicy swagger, touch of vanilla, though young was a ‘3 in 1’ whisky for its different dimensions
I also published tasting notes from July’s Krishna’s Collection with:
- Glen Grant 60 year (1950/2010) 40% – Old polished wood, delicate perfume, fruits & cream, elegant, nuanced, exceedingly easy to drink
- Bowmore 12 year (1970s/19802) 40% – Absolutely stunning! Restrained, brilliant body, kiss of peat with a joyful host enjoyable quality
- “The Prestonfield” Vintage 1972 43% – Phenolyic, camphor, peculiar… to the point of not being enjoyable
- Glen Garioch 17 year (1996) 55.7% – Orange cream cookies, almost brandy-like, exceedingly smooth
- Caol Ila 36 year (1980) 52.3% (Cadenheads) – Bitter hing, quite vegetal, echo of peat growing into proper peat, sweet with a long cinnamon spice finish
- Laphroaig 19 year (1996) 53.9% (Old Particular) – Chewy leather, toffee, tobacco, beautifully complex, nuanced dram of substance
Naturally with a few odds and ends… including:
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