Delhi time! i arrived here on thursday night…well at 2am…i was picked up from the airport this time and all went smoothly. I have had a bit of an issue with accommodation, but now that I am here, I can sort that out. This trip is only 10 days, so I can survive it. I may be back here in April for a week, but that is still tbd. May, 2 weeks, all of June, and 2 to 3 weeks in July. Yes, the grossest time of the year in terms of weather!
Delhi has been good so far. I feel quite comfortable and safe on my own…even though I keep hearing horror stories. The rickshaw driver only got me lost once, and he was really nice about it. I just couldn’t find another one and walked miles to the main road and that was late at night, but it was totally fine. No one has really bothered me here, compared to my trip ten years ago. Knock on wood. I have found Connaught Place, known as CP to most, and it brings back memories of my last trip here. It does not seemed to have changed much. Khan Market is a more upscale area, lots of expats and well off Indians. There are a ton of restaurants, cafes, shops and salons in the small block. Needless to say, I have found my fav. Delhi salon. The set up is strange in that 3 floors of a building are occupied. So a restuarant can be on the top floor and you wouldn’t even know unless you were really familiar with the place.
The streets of Delhi are packed with people, but no surprise. Tuk tuks and cars swerve in and out of every lane and the constant honking…well how can one get used to that? It is ever polluted and smoggy and I have not yet seen blue skies. The streets are full of dirt and garbage, some areas more than others.
Yesterday, I ended up going to the Delhi Jazz festival, which was really nice. It was closing day and there were 3 bands, one from Germany, Mexico and Spain. The music was fantastic and the crowd was totally into it. It was set in Nehru Park. People had brought their blankets, snacks and other concotions. I ended up going there with a friend of friends who is with the Spanish Embassy and helped to organize the whole event. So it was a good great experience for me. My first red carpet in Delhi.
Oh yes, there is a metro now, works well. There are women’s only compartments too, which is really helpful. What’s cute is that there are no doors closing off the women’s apartment that is connected to the unisex one and that one is always packed with men, perhaps trying to find their suitable girl. Love it.
I have not done a whole lot of sight seeing yet, as I do have some time, being back and forth here from now until July. It will be interesting to see how the 3 lives unfold over the next few months – the life in the field with the local people, the expatriate in Delhi life, and the life with the better off Indians. It will be somewhat similar to Kenya I suppose. Balance.
I love chai!