Rakhee Ghelani

Business Consultant, Writer and Traveller

About Me

I am a Melbourne girl of Indian origin. After completing degrees in Law (with Honours), Commerce and Management, my career followed a rather traditional path for 16 years. I worked in a challenging and rewarding corporate career for some of Australia’s best known brands (like Foster’s, General Motors Holden and ANZ Bank).

In 2011, I was in my mid-30′s, single and had been through some challenging times personally, so I decided it was time for a change and chose to leave Australia and move to India.  I was granted Overseas Citizenship of India, which means I can live and work in India forever.

First I took a holiday, and backpacked across the country for 9 months, blogging about it here. Whilst I travelled, I started receiving offers to write for online publications, and I also took up my first consultancy assignment with an Indian start-up.

I settled in Mumbai in 2012, and have been working as a writer, business consultant and entrepreneur since. Because of my extensive corporate experience, I have a very broad skill set and am able to add value to a variety of different businesses.  Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, I conduct most of my consulting and writing work through online mediums, and have clients from around the globe.

You can find out more about my Business Consulting and Writing  on this site. My photography can be purchased at iStockPhoto.  As for my entrepreneurial efforts, I am co-founder of a Gourmet Pop-Up shop in Mumbai called Potluck Me and there are more things in the pipeline, I will let you know when they launch.

If you would like to get in contact with me to discuss opportunities working with your business you can contact me at rakheeghelani13@gmail.com or join me on FacebookTwitter, Google and Instagram.

55 comments on “About Me

  1. rohit
    June 7, 2014

    me rohit 27 sing male frm india city agra lived alone with mine uncle nd aunt loved to hear hindi songs in mine lonlyness on mine lappy
    ny honest decent matured fem while u married or aged too wanna chat interested in trure longterm friendship online or in real life
    add me in yrs yahoo mesenger mine yahoo id is merohit2725@yahoo.com make mine dream true pls

  2. arun
    April 25, 2014

    April 25, 2014

    i knew your tiresome journeys. i would like to know more about u via chatting. so please add me in my yahoo messenger. anilragv at yahoo.in or call me 09995929874 It is from India.

  3. arun
    April 25, 2014

    i knew your tiresome journeys. i would like to know more about u via chatting. so please add me in my yahoo messenger. It is from India.

  4. Eme
    August 17, 2013

    Hi Rakhe
    I am overwhelmed by your great decision to move to Mumbai. all the very best.
    It is of course a great place with diversified cultures unlike Australia.
    Em

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      August 18, 2013

      Thanks Em

      I am not sure I agree with you, I think Australia has quite a diversified culture, and is a great place too. But yes, I love India.

  5. Niroshan
    August 10, 2013

    I’m agreed your post about Sri Lanka. After 30 year terrorist war, the country drags to the hell. now it is in the 0 level. after another 5-10 years you wouldn’t beleave that’s for sure.
    I’m Born Sri Lanka but lived in USA, i came for a short vacation and i saw the development and the real change
    I hope that India will go head Sri Lanka b’cos its reach and bigger country. I wish that all the Asian countries will stand in-front of the western countries.

    NiroshanM

  6. Prakash1234
    June 16, 2013

    Dear Rakhee,
    Let look at the cultural details to see why Indian men and women and society as a whole creates this situation.
    1) Stereotypical Culture and expectations- In India man has to complete his college by age of 25 have a decent job by 28 and marry get settle down by 30, by 35 one or two kids and then by 55 to 60 die atleast in big cities. Similarly goes for women.

    If you do not make it through college you are treated like shit both by your parents and society. If you do not have a good job by 30 people will only keep asking you only one question when you getting married?

    2) Indian society a mental torture- My friend in school in 9th grade got 99% grades for mathematics and her mom beat the hell out of her why she missed that 1%? You will find in India child and grown up people abuse everywhere. In Indian school you will always find grades of the students openly declared or posted on the wall. People will treat you like shit if you fail in exams? Nobody tells you to find the majors you like.

    3) Loving your kids mean respecting their decision and guiding them in life and not taking decisions for them- Best example is arrange marriage. Mom and dad will keep bugging you, will find a nice women for you. In reality every person is a good and bad person depending what you looking for in a person. My friend was in love for 4 yrs, they are coworkers in IT company and close to age of 30, working in IT and still parents don’t trust his choice? Are you not old enough to find a women you like? I know my friend was dating this girl for two yrs, they both were happy, as soon as her parents found this dad beat the crap out of him? I know couple dating and as soon as she revealed her dad about the love story, she told this guy goodbye, you not from my caste, my dad will find a better than you?

    4) Success is not key to happiness, but happiness is key to success- In India happiness has no value. It is okay to be unhappy, but we need success. Once you get success you will be happy is what average Indian’s think. Best example is if you do not work in computers or doctor or some white collar job, people will straight up tell you to quit the job or will tell you you are dumb. Nobody tells to chase happiness or pursue the carrier you like. Thats why you see so many Indian people making money, having college degrees but not truly happy people.

    5) Personality- In India most believe nothing is impossible and you can do any job. But people in west believe in personality a lot. People pick jobs, dating everything is based on personality. In India if you are a rich kid and your dad wants you to go be MBA you going to pursue it no matter if your personality is shy, introvert, you like it or not. So people end up picking up job making more money but are never truly happy or satisfied.

    6) Childfree by Choice- As soon as you are married, people want to have babies in yr or so. If not in laws will start making a big deal whatsgoing on? No kids yet? Biological problem? Will the couple have a choice to have kids or not? Can a person decide to be childfree and people and society be happy with persons decision? Can the couple decided to adopt and live their life on their own?
    Indian society is a very status oriented society, people need to look for their happiness and not worry about what world says.

    7) Marital status not indicator of your happiness- Unfortunately in India, definition of happy life is married with kids. Happiness is within you, doing things you like.

    8) Divorce a taboo- We live in 21st century. If couple do not get along, have issues it is better for couples to get divorce and seek their happiness. Divorce being stigma in places with no compatibility is just going to lead domestic violence.

    9) Dating and Premarital Sex- Dating being recently picked up, thanks to westernization women get more freedom. But even if dating is picked up its not upto western standards. In India it could be about 6 months to yr to just get a kiss? Getting laid forget about it. Will Indian women ever open up their legs? How do you expect young men and women to release their stress? In west people start dating as young as 14. Men and Women in west are not stuck up with middle eastern concepts like virginity and all. By 20 atleast most people loose their virginity. So by 25 to 30 men and women know what opposite sex needs and should be treated. So i think western men are much happier than Indian men. If dating picks up men will try to look better and so do women.

    10) Pissing in public, lack of health- I have seen in west too people who are blue collar workers tend to chew, but they will either get a bottle to spit or some kinda container. I guess these things need to introduced to these auto drivers and other blue collar workers in India.

    So because of all the cultural expectations and frustrations Indian male goes through with mom, dad, wife, society he does not care much about his day to day appearance, if he is chewing or pissing in public. He makes money but hates his job, comes home stressed out unhappy. So in reality cultural expectations from men and women in society are unrealistic leading to unhappiness and bad treatment of females. At the same time if women does not like cooking, does not want kids, she is left with little choice in India, leading to her unhappiness as well.
    I feel bad for a Indian people they are alcoholic person, they are slaves or their stereotypical thinking. They need come out of the closet. Follow their heart. Do jobs they like, marry someone they like. Embracing dating, living relationships, adoption and westernization is only way to bring change in India.

    I am obviously Indian male, who has dated in america, europe, asia and India. Females in Asia(Korea) were somewhere in between India and west. They want to know what job you do, how much you make usually in first few dates(seemed like more of gold digger), was quite similar to Indians. But in relationship atleast they were more open. In america women think Indian males only go for arrange marriage so they do not want to mess around with you. Europe was awesome.
    After dating in different parts of world, most of the western females liked me, they complimented me the way i look. I am 6′ 2″ in good shape run marathons. I think i connect better with western and european females. They always say I do not know Indian guys can be so sweet. I am hopeless romantic.
    I came back to India last yr and tried to go on a date with girls in met from shaadi.com or some friends i new. They liked me the way i treated. But at the end of the first date, they were talking about marriage and all? Let our parents meet now? I was like i barely even know you? But then I understand bcos of arrange marriage women are not used to dating too long may be? One women told me she does not want to date, just marry? So if we get married without knowing each others expectations its not good.
    I am better off with western women, i treat them nice. They are not nagging me, support my dreams and hobbies. I am a outdoorsy guy, most Indian women to be honest do not workout, heard of aunty syndrome. Most Indian girls i have met have princess complex, some girls tried to compare my paycheck with them? Some girls tried to dominate on me just because they are PhD or doctor, i am like really? Some girls dad were super dominating and annoying and were talking to me like I am doing a favor by asking their daughter? I am sorry my family is Indian i have sisters and brothers too. But it is just the reality. Sorry for the long post, hope will give some more insight on Indian culture. Stay happy stay smiling.

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      June 16, 2013

      Thanks for your thoughts.

    • Frankie
      May 14, 2014

      @Prakash1234 – thank you for sharing your most insightful thoughts and commentary about your culture and life experiences … it is appreciated. I wish you all the best.

    • Donna
      June 9, 2014

      Wow! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences here. Very interesting.

  7. riteshmokasana
    May 27, 2013

    Hi Rakhee , nice to read about you , nice journey with challenge. wish you best all the way ! keep it up. Ritesh

  8. Anita Alm
    December 1, 2012

    Hi Rakhee,
    Couldn’t find your email address here. Please send it to me. Sharell referred me to you.
    Thanks.

  9. lifeoutofthebox
    November 26, 2012

    I love your food posts. It looks amazing. Thanks for sharing.

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      November 26, 2012

      Thanks, glad you enjoy them. You should follow me on Twitter (@rakheeghelani), I post a lot of pictures there of the food I am eating!

      • lifeoutofthebox
        November 27, 2012

        Cool. I also love when you put the price of the food too. It helps me get a vibe of the cost of living. Have a great day.

  10. angela_carson
    October 29, 2012

    Hi, I’d like to send you an email but can’t find your mail ID Rakhee…please shoot me a mail when you have a second. Much thanks xo Angela

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      October 29, 2012

      I have sent you an email, do let me know if you don’t receive it.

  11. shivam
    October 20, 2012

    HI,
    I read article related to indian men. I believe you haven’t met a true Indian. ya! I agree with you on most of the points you have experienced but I would say have some patience. A True Indian heart would be most generous, caring, and passionate. He would never leave you on your own on the face of adversity, this virtue winnow out from others.

  12. womanistan
    September 29, 2012

    Hi,

    Found your blog on blogadda and must say i spent my last two days reading about your experiences here. You have your own unique way for expressing yourself. I hope you have a few more memorable trips to India :)

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      September 29, 2012

      Thanks I am loving it here and glad you are enjoying reading about it

  13. Hi Rakhee,

    We have a lot in common …. I went to India after a prolonged period of grief and loss. I’m not if Indian origin, well not officially anyway. I feel so at home in India, I wonder if I am Indian on the inside!

    I found that the liveliness of India — the richness of the culture, the friendliness of the people and the full-on technicolour experience of just being there, brought me back from my grief depression and kick-started my life again. As a consequence, I love India!

    • Ahsan Javed Khan
      May 10, 2013

      Hello Dear Mariellen,

      I am so glad to read your post and your positive experience about India. Yes, this country has a lot to give and take. The diversity of this land absorbs everyone from everywhere.

      Do you know one thing? The same things happened with me when I got an Aussie in his sixties. I was so frustrated about my weakness in communication due to lack of exposure and cultural exchange. Fortunately, I met him online and since then I stuck with him. He has really done a great thing in my life and I cannot forget it ever.

      Finally, I would like to meet you guys who have such a tremendous things to share with each other. Firstly, virtually and if luck helps us, we could meet in person as well.

      Javed Khan

  14. Catherine
    May 15, 2012

    Hi Rakhee
    I’m the editor of ExpatArrivals.com, a site devoted to developing comprehensive destination guides aimed at easing expat transition abroad. I came across your blog through the course of my research on India today, and I really enjoyed your posts about life in India. I was hoping I could convince you to share some of your expat insight with our site. If you’re interested in learning more, please contact me at catherine@expatarrivals.com.
    Thanks!

  15. Arun
    May 1, 2012

    Read your blog on Indian men ( I was searching for a news item that said that 53% of Indian girls think wife beating is justified)
    Having born and brought up in India I am desensitized to poverty (I stay In bandra too but my carter road walk end at CCD), but I’m still very appalled at the way Indian guys are made to believe that they’re God’s Gift and the way society actively condones if not promotes crime against women
    I wonder why you came to India, what’s so good (bad) about this country for you to decide spending time and you sure are staying in a very comfy place (Bandra is as chic & urban).

    So what’s your trip in life, though you seem to have spent time in rural Indian villages (that I never did) you don’t seem the activist type who stay with villagers to uplift them.

    Cheers,

    Arun

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      May 1, 2012

      Thanks for your comment Arun.

      I came to India to explore my ancestry and experience something new, kind of a mid-life change. It is such a rich and fascinating country, so far I am enjoying it.

  16. pankajsancheti
    April 27, 2012

    I welcome you to “your” country. The country which has potential to grow as consciously liberal nation, but wont be able to do because of its social force. This force is so much powerful that people often ignore the truth and their loved ones in front of the social force. And looking back on India’s history whenever there was any revolution, social force was the first one who opposed the revolution and it was defeated in the history repeatedly. This force hinders the development of India. And when I say development I dont urge on making Mumbai in to Shanghai. I want Mumbai to remain as Mumbai but development should be inspired from the culture and resources around you, and not just copying the west, from the constitution to the institution. If you wanna get objective and rational view of social India, never become part of any particular social group. Remain independent and think independent. Furthermore, to get brain food follow the thoughts of Javed Akhtar, the prominent poet, MP and lyricist. They are all over the internet.

    All the best,
    Pankaj

  17. Phil
    January 31, 2012

    Not meaning to imply anything, but when I first read this blog, i initially imagined a young back packer typish white Australian girl..
    Anyways wish you all the best in whatever you do . I am an Indian male currently in Australia.

    • Phil
      January 31, 2012

      I was in India till 23, and I have seen all sorts of people. On your earlier opinion about Indian males , yes there are quite a few with idiosyncratic behaviors which tend to be sublimated here because afterall the majority of the population is still below middle class and not really educated. It is not a homogeneous society like australia , hence I can understand your shock.
      But at the same time there is an ever growing middle class sector now, recently surpassing the 400 million mark, and the young adults from this middle class generation are fluent in English, have strong ethics and morals(read anti corruption, does anna hazare ring a bell?). These adults are quite modern, why some are rather suave as well..The point I am trying to make is after a bit of time, you will probably find suitable men , ie men who are around your wavelength for sure!!.

  18. syamukamath
    December 9, 2011

    K.Just askd. Still wondering ! Why a sudden shift by many?

  19. syamukamath
    December 8, 2011

    Lol. Rock the world, and turn it upside down.hehe
    and just for knowledge, have seen many people, longterm NRIs, Indian origin people , whose ancestors shiftd years back, now returning to India,. And many westerns coming here marrying Indians and staying here! What had happened suddenly!! Is it coz of economic depression n west or wot?

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      December 8, 2011

      I can’t speak for all, but to me India is a great country with a lot to offer and learn from. Hence why I am here.

  20. joysown
    November 27, 2011

    hey rakhee… ur blog on the backwaters in kerala caught my attention and liked the snaps u have posted. i hope u have a lovely and safe travel across the country. mumbai is where i am, so incase u do come to town and need a few pointers on the places that u may want to see… drop in a line. cheers.. keep posting.

  21. Nisha
    November 15, 2011

    So you are in Kerala now :). Hope you are enjoying your stay. Found your blog through one of the zillions of newsletters that arrive in my inbox, glad I checked it out. I have always wanted to travel, but haven’t quite had the courage to leave my life behind and do that. Besides, I am a travel dud, I am kinda lost unless there are good hotels and a chaperone. Do mail me if you can. Would love to get to know you more.

    • Rakhee Ghelani
      November 15, 2011

      Thanks and glad you are enjoying the blog. I will continue to share my experiences here and perhaps give you a taste for some travel.

  22. Abhishek Jain
    November 6, 2011

    Guess tis quite Late..bt Congratulations n Best of luck for ur Decision n i Hope it works out Gr8888 for you
    NJOiiiiiiiii ur stay here at India..like you wud have always had..n much much More :)
    Hope to read more bout all ur interesting experiences here n on twitter..n maybe you ll temme bout places here m Yet to discover (specifically Delhi :) :)

  23. Ryan George
    October 31, 2011

    Hello Rakhee,
    I have no clue as to how I ended up in your blog in my expedition through the google kingdom…but,boy! am I glad I did!..I don’t make any claims of having read all your blogs so far…but in as far as I have read it sure was informative and amusing at the same time…cant purge the image of a man scratching his nether regions and staring at you..hehe! Never thought a woman in India would be treated to such vulgarities on a day to day basis.
    Good luck with your life in India.Hope it at least gives you hope and happiness.Keep on writing.

    • Ryan George
      October 31, 2011

      PS: Don’t believe everything you read in the TOI.

    • aussiegirlinindia
      October 31, 2011

      Thanks so much, I am glad you enjoyed the blog

  24. Nicky Singh
    October 30, 2011

    Hi Rakhee, I’m also Australian born currently living in Amritsar, except I am not of Indian decent. I met and fell in love with my Punjabi husband In Brisbane Australia six years ago.
    We decided to move to Amritsar for a different pace of life and to experience the extended family love and support. I wish you well on your travels and for your future happiness.

  25. Karthik Jagannathan
    October 2, 2011

    First all many congratulations on your move to India. I stumbled on to your blog from the expat forum. You really have a way with words!! :)

    Good luck with everything. My personal recommendation for whatever it is worth – Pune is a city you may wanna consider for settling down. I lived there for a year and found it extremely refreshing experience.

    Cheers

    K.

    • aussiegirlinindia
      October 2, 2011

      Thanks for your wishes. I will definitely keep Pune in mind, I have heard good things about it

  26. Queeniw
    October 1, 2011

    HI there good luck with everything….and good on you! I am also of indian decent and in my thirties and have picked up the whole family and brought them to Mumbai to live. We left Sydney 5 months ago now and really enjoy the change and look forward to our evolution as a family. But we do miss the pacific ocean! Check out my blog for a tongue in cheek look at the whole process…

    http://queenofthesuburbs.blogspot.com

    • aussiegirlinindia
      October 6, 2011

      Cheers. I can understand your longing for the Pacific. I haven’t seen an Ocean in over 2 months and I just want to see any ocean. Hopefully in a few weeks.

  27. Sarang
    September 30, 2011

    Hi… Wish all your dreams and desires get fulfilled in my motherland, and you find your moments spent here a worthy learning experience, something you will cherish day in day out. Welcome to India. And yes, I have gone through some of your posts. They make an interesting read. For someone like me, its as if watching self through a third person’s eye. Keep writing.

    Warm Regards
    Sarang

    • aussiegirlinindia
      September 30, 2011

      Thanks Sarang. I am looking forward to telling many more stories. I have also added your blog to my Google Reader.

      Cheers

  28. Gerard ~ GQ trippin
    September 28, 2011

    So glad I found a blog like yours. My GF and I are planning our RTW and will stop in India for 3 weeks. Hope to gain some great insight through your blog!

    • aussiegirlinindia
      September 28, 2011

      Cheers. I have plenty more traveling to do here. Tip #1 only take a bus when absolutely necessary :-)

      • Gerard ~ GQ trippin
        September 29, 2011

        good to know. I hear the train is a free-for-all too! =P

        • aussiegirlinindia
          September 30, 2011

          I am quite a fan of the trains, but I have only traveled AC classes. They are comfortable, clean and great value.

      • Curious Bear
        March 27, 2013

        Agree.

        We are Indians and even we do not take public transportation.

        :-p

  29. Karen
    September 21, 2011

    I wish you all the best and hope you find a sense of peace and fulfillment in this huge step you have taken.

    • Melanie
      April 5, 2012

      Hi Aussie girl in India,

      I stumbled upon your blog and read your piece about Indian men> It’s sad, though not unusual, for a single girl (more so when you are a foreigner) to have had such bad experiences. Also, please be careful about strange guys who might be over-friendly.

      Perhaps, you may be right and an Indian male who has to choose his own bride may mind his manners! But I have heard of men who are charmers but turn into Frankensteins after you marry them so that is not saying much. I would blame the male attitude towards women, as rising from the patriarchy, which is so built into the Indian DNA. The mother who pampers her son and prevents him from growing-up is also reinforcing the patriarchy, without realising it. Also, perhaps out of a sense of insecurity- to be assured of some form of control when the other woman comes in!

      Anyway, wish you luck with your stay in India and if you need any help when you are swinging by my city, feel free to use my e-mail id to touch base. I will be glad to be of help in any way. Wish you luck with meeting that elusive Indian male (:-)

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