Days in Delhi
Trip Start Nov 24, 2009
19Trip End Mar 07, 2010
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Where I stayed
I am presently here in Delhi, and yes first impressions are of Shock and amazement. Where do you start to explain the differences to what you have been used to for your whole life.
After roughing it out at Bangkok airport i caught my early morning flight to Delhi, I arrived no problems and was lucky enough to sit next to Sidd who is an Indian national but is living and working in New Zealand, So we gotta chatting about places to go see and helpful hints for the trip which was a blessing, we exchanged details where we will meet in Delhi before i fly back and he will take me around, which will be very nice.
So i took a pre paid taxi into Paharganj which is where all the backpackers stay. Now the taxi to Paharganj was an experience in it's self, the Driving here is so wild, forget lanes, forget indicators, forget speed limits, out here it's anything goes
So Paharganj is fairly crazy during the day and night, it's a small lane with many small shops and guest houses where travelers stay. As soon as someone sees you with a backpack on they immediately flock to you and try to get you to stay in their accommodation, they are pretty persistent too but if you stay persistent and tell them "NO" then they will eventually leave.
So i found a place, pretty crap but it has all the essentials and for only $8 per night, it's one the the cheaper options, plus you only really use it to sleep.
So with limited sleep i thought it would be better to stay awake instead of sleep straight away, so i took a walk to Connaught place which is one big round-about near the center. The walk alone shows so much, the poverty, the pollution, the traffic. At the moment there is a lot of construction going on in Delhi for the Commonwealth games next year, so it make the place more dusty and dirty, sometimes i find it hard to breathe because of all the dust and the pollution. even walking on the side walk men just go to the toilet, so every now and again you cop a big woft of urine and it's not too pleasant, but you see this everywhere.
So feeling hungry and also aware of Delhi Belly i decided to play it safe and get "wimpy's" which is just a fast food chain
By the next day i had slept fairly well, so i went to the train station and booked a train ticket to Jaipur ( In which i didn't end up catching) and headed back for some breakfast and a HOT shower. On the first day i wasn't told that you had to ask the reception to turn the hot water on, so i had to endure a cold shower, I was lucky to have met Mark, from Sydney, the previous night who had told me that i needed to ask for them to turn the hot showers on.
I then caught an auto rickshaw to the Red Fort which is this big, huge, amazing fort set in Old Delhi. You are immediately captivated by its long big red walls.
Inside you get to see some amazing building's and gardens as well as a small museum with some old artifacts. From there i took a walk through the parks behind the fort towards Raj Ghat, which is the place where mahatma gandhi was cremated, it's a small square marble platform made from black marble.
By that time it was lunch so i whipped out the phone and gave my friend Vidur a call, we arranged to meet at Khan market for lunch. We meet at 2pm and grabbed some lunch, it was great because i haven't caught up with Vidur for about a year and a half, and then when i do catch up with him it's in Delhi, pretty random
That night we went to one of his friends houses called Zai, a professional golf player, although at first glimpse you wouldn't think so. We then proceeded to head out for the night. We ended up checking out one of Vidurs and Zai's friends play music at a local bar which was way out in the suburbs of Delhi, in fact it was in another state, this is because there are state borders through the suburbs of Delhi. You can tell when you are in the other state because the infrastructure changes, in Delhi there are not really any High rises and the buildings are all old, by crossing the border there are apartment high rises, new buildings and it's alot cleaner that Delhi center.
The band that was playing was pretty impressive, they only played covers of mostly Iron Maiden, Guns and Roses etc. but the guitarist was very good getting all of the riffs and solos spot on, the singer was pretty good too, had a really good voice. So after a few beers i was really enjoying myself. We headed back for the night.
So i missed the train i had booked, well decided not to catch it. It didn't cost too much only $11.
Vidur was busy for the day so i opted to hang at the hotel, i ran into Mark around lunch time so we went upto the roof and had a bite to eat and sat around till about 7 just talking before Mark had to catch his train heading towards Nepal which was perfect timing because i went and met Vidur and Zai at the Delhi Golf Club, wow that was an amazing invitation, we had some food and drinks there
We then proceeded to another amzing invitation which was pre marriage party. We drove into the suburbs where we walked down a street which had a tent set up, just in the middle of the street, in front of peoples houses!. Vidur said this wasn't common. The party was full of colors, dancing and food, i felt very privilaged to be able to go. This continued into the wee hours (5am) of the morning where we headed back to Vidurs grandmothers place.
Poor Vidur had about 3 hours sleep before he had to get up and drive his grandmother to the doctors, and he was pretty drunk at the party, by the time he came home, about an hour later, he promptly hit the sack, by that stage i woke up, so being myself i waited till 1pm till vidur woke up...haha...it was all good, i just read one of his books.
Needless to say nothing much happend during the day, we were both pretty tired. After finding out what Vidurs plans were (Whether he had to stay in Delhi or not) i booked another train ticket to Jaipur.
So in short for the first few days i didn't enjoy Delhi too much but as soon as i was with Vidur i started to enjoy it much more, and yes it does take some time to get use to the change. But i also think if you do India it's better to do it with someone, because there aren't really hostels and most other travelers in India are couples who are a bit older than me so i found it hard to meet people. Beside that India is an amazing place and a must do.
So my next blog will be about my limited time in Rajasthan where i visited Jaipur and Jodhpur and my delayed trips.