An eye opening experience in Mumbai

It has been a few days since my last post and for good reason.  I have been blessed to spend the last five days in Mumbai, India where I attended the World HRD congress in conjunction with the World Training and World Coaching Congress.  All of these events were held at the Taj Lands End hotel in Mumbai.

Let me share a little of what I have had the chance to see and learn while here.  The conference was a great experience in itself.  I made many new friends and also established a number of linkages, most of them with colleagues outside the United States.  My intent was to learn more about what is going on in my profession outside of my own back yard and I saw some great presenters while here.

A second learning while here was our trip into Mumbai yesterday.  I spent most of the day with my colleagues Joel Carboni, Sharon Ferrier and Myriam Callegarin.  Joel is from Indiana, Sharon is from Australia and Myriam lives in Italy.  We hired a couple of drivers and set off for the heart of Mumbai.  We saw a number of sights and were able to compare the stark contrasts of those who live in this bustling city.

There are those who live in abject poverty and right next door are those living in opulence.  This would never occur in  America due to our zoning laws, but here it is commonplace.  I also made an emotional decision and purchased a tailored silk-wool suit in Mumbai.  The suit arrived 8 hours later after measurement and it fits like a glove.  You only live once in this world, so why not have a little fun?

One thing I had been trying to set up for months prior to arriving was the opportunity to attend a Rotary meeting while in Mumbai.  Just when it looked like that would not happen I had some wonderful hosts step up from the Rotary Club of Bombay Northwest.

This club owns an eye hospital that  serves thousands annually.  Much of the service the provide is at no cost, but many do pay, albeit at a much lower rate than the norm.  They gave me a detailed tour of their facility and gave great perspective to how they started the clinic.  It humbles me to see the good work these men and women are doing here with those who have so many needs!

It is now time to go home and that I will do as I board my plane for Amsterdam at 1:15 am local time on Wednesday.  I am schedule to arrive in the Netherlands early that morning and then fly directly to Detroit.  After a 2-3 hour layover I should be back in Nashville around 3:00 pm on Wednesday afternoon.  No doubt I will be tired, but I will also be inspired.

So often we get caught up in the mundane issues of our lives and we don’t take the opportunity to go out and see other parts of the world.  While it has been a grueling trip at times, the memories and learning I have had has been life altering.

If you have the chance, come to India.  You’ll be glad you did.