Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Remembering Mumbai, 26 November 2008

On the 26th November 2008, we all woke to the news of horrific terrorist attacks in Mumbai. Our time spent in India in July of this year gave us the opportunity to meet some people that this day a year ago tomorrow had a direct impact on. Staff at our hotel who were fortunate enough to avoid the gun fire at the Oberoi and Taj Mahal Hotels. We can not begin to imagine the fear they have experienced. We now also have a personal and life long connection to Mother India. This is where Noddy was conceived. Through the generosity of two wonderful Indian woman and Dr Sudhir and Yash from Surrogacy India. We remember 26-11-08 because of them. The world we live in in vastly more aware of global conflict that that of our grandparents and great grand parents. The changed world we now live in seems to be desperately clinging onto peace; at least, this is my opinion. The nightly news without fail always seems to have a terrible story on war, famine and terrorism. The world and the people living here are crying out for help.

Innocent people, caught in the middle of political, religious and territorial motivated hate crimes. This is after all what is happening; crimes against your fellow man are not only terribly hateful but hurtful. The hate has a flow on affect sometimes lasting generations.

I loathe conflict and war. Whenever I hear of the terrible things happening in our world today I'm saddened. I do not understand what it is like to be hungry. I do not understand what it is like not to have fresh, clean drinking water available to me. I do not understand what it is like to have lost family members to war and I do not understand what it is like to have my family home taken from me due to no wrong doing on my part. I am in many way a naive person and perhaps selfish? We live in the Western, developed world a very decadent life. I cringe now when I think of the thousands of dollars spent on trivial, fleeting things; food, possessions long gone and the list could go on.

I love to travel the world, meet new people and experience daily life in a country vastly different from my own. But, as a tourist travelling for leisure one wears rose coloured glasses to a certain degree. This was evident during our time in India. Darren and I were fortunate enough due to my line of work to stay in an amazing 5* hotel with all the bells and whistles one could ask for. As we have said in earlier posts though, there was extreme poverty no more than a stones throw from our hotel lobby!

After my GOOGLE search, I learned the following facts:
~ At least 80% of humanity live on less than $10 a day
~ According to UNICEF, 25,000 children die every day due to poverty. 25,000!
~ Nearly 1 billion people entered the 21st century unable to read or sign their own name
~ Less than 1% of what the world spent every year on weapons was needed to put every child
into school by the year 2000.

Both Darren and I know how blessed we are.
We live in a free country ~ free to be ourselves
~ free to practice our religion without fear of attack
~ free from hunger and thirst
~ free from war
~ free from homelessness and poverty
This is the changing world we are going to bring our child into. I hope and pray that our children can make a difference.


  1. Your post is reallly really great. Most simply don't realise the luck we have in the western world in this very special period of human history. And it is probably too the reason that when I went in India (or other parts of Asia in fact), I didn't go in star rated hotels but in low cost accomodation/food, going instead in places were indians went too. It probably changes nothing for them but I prefer to make live the small hotel/restaurant/street vendor that the already very rich owner of a big hotel or restaurant.

  2. We are so very fortunate. I remember Mumbai, there were some SI forum members there at the time. It was really scary. I remember one photo showing someone who died at the exact table a forum member had taken a photo at a few weeks before. It was just heartbreakingly horrifying.