Athens has quite a reputation to live up to. Named for Athena, Goddess of Wisdom, the city is credited with being the cradle of European civilization and birthplace of democracy. Ruins and relics of its glory days are scattered throughout the modern city, popping up where you least expect them. Its crowning glory is the Acropolis, perched atop a hillside, and covered in carved and columned temples of varying degrees of antiquity. Not quite so old is the Plaka, an appealing neighborhood for a stroll down cobblestone streets, past old mansions and a plethora of outdoor tavernas ideal for watching the world go by, while munching tasty Greek snacks.
The home of Bollywood and its now world-famous film industry, this is the glamour capital of India. Even more fascinating, however, are the aspects of daily life that constitute the real Mumbai – from the sublime to the mundane. The majority of Indians are Hindus, believing in a vast pantheon of deities. The most popular of these are visible everywhere, in large colorful temples, street corner shrines, shops, and on the dashboards of cars. And then there are the dhobi-wallahs with their laundry, and the tiffin-wallahs with their lunch delivery, both popular and seemingly anachronistic services, run with a razor sharp precision that the West might be hard pressed to duplicate.
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