Bangalore highlights and how a marathon trains you for long flights

It’s certainly been another whirlwind last couple of days. On Sunday, we flew to Bangalore, India. Josh had to work on Monday and Tuesday but that left me to do some exploring by myself.

First, running is most important! It was so hot in the gym, that even this fan could not keep me cool.

I don’t think I’ve ever been to a mall outside of America that compares to the craziness we have here. I went UB City, Bangalore’s first luxury mall and it only has 29 stores, compared to 150+ stores in the malls at home!

If you look closely enough at this picture, taken from our hotel room, you’ll notice that there is cow walking the streets. It’s like Where’s Waldo? Where’s the cow?

Bangalore Palace is kind of creepy and neat at the same time. It certainly does not compare to anything I’ve seen in London or Paris but the randomness of the pictures on the walls and how poorly maintained it is makes for a very unique experience. Plus the admission cost is more for foreigners and on top of that there is a fee for using a camera and a cell phone camera (two different costs)!

It’s so much easier to sightsee in a foreign country with someone who has spent a chunk of time living there. I was lucky that our friend, Matt happened to be in Bangalore the same time for work as well. Fortunately for me, his work schedule is a little more flexible so we were able to do a little sightseeing together one afternoon. Following a semi-local around meant, I was able to eat at the famous local places, know exactly what to order (by that I mean let someone else order for me), and display a sense of confidence when trying to negotiate with the locals.

And then it was time to fly home which is always my least favorite part of the trip. Thinking about the long flight home by myself gave me anxiety for days. From the time I left the hotel until the time I arrived back home, it took over 26 hours. To help calm myself down, I kept thinking of the journey as a marathon. First, I had to make the trip the airport, then check-in/security, plus wait at the gate (~3.5 hours). But once I was on the flight, it was only 4 hours until I arrived at Abu Dhabi airport. Then at that airport, it was more security, US Customs, and waiting (~3.5 hours). Finally, for the last leg of the flight, 13 hours, I had a strategy on sleeping, reading, watching movies, more reading, and watching TV shows. It really helped to breakdown the trip into smaller chunks, like I would for a marathon. Every time, I made it to the next milestone, I would internally pat myself on the back for getting through it. Crazy, right? But it worked!

How do you handle long flights?

Any upcoming trips planned?

Abu Dhabi

Happy Cinco de Mayo from Bangalore, India! A quick recap of my past week in pictures:

En route to India, we had a layover in Abu Dhabi. Instead of a couple hours in the airport, we spent two nights there.

View from the hotel room
I ate some really yummy food while there and spent a short time on a movie set riding in a stunt car (yes, I’m serious and no, I can’t share pictures, but maybe at a later date).
Salmon quinoa salad with citrus vinaigrette dressing (so yummy!)
Variety of grilled meats at Lebanese Flower Restaurant (incredible!)
I also hung out by the beach and pool at the hotel as well. It’s over 100 degrees there, so that is one of the few ways to survive the days!
Sunset overlooking the beach
I finally ran after many days off since the Long Branch Half Marathon. The gym at the hotel was immaculate. There was water and a towel at every treadmill and they restocked and cleaned as soon as someone finished. The treadmill also had games built into the touch screen. I played “Four in a Row” while running, clearly I wasn’t running very fast.
You don’t see the result of this game or the many others I played, I think I lost 95% of the time at every level – easy, medium, and hard. Clearly I can’t run and play Four in a Row at the same time. 
And we went to visit Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, which was absolutely incredible. No other words or pictures can describe how amazing it looks there.
Panoramic from the iPhone
Pictures are supposed to be best when the sun is setting

The week has felt surreal (I’m not usually this interesting) and it’s only Monday!

How was your week and weekend?