When last I posted about India I said that we were in the south in a beachside town called Varkala and that we expected to be there a good while longer. Well, like many plans ours changed. Varkala was indeed lovely. A kilometer long beach with the tourist town perched above on a cliff top that gave amazing views out to sea. It was our intent to stay for about a month while we did a bit of work but we had neglected one of our basic travel principles – go where the weather is best. Now, while the weather in Varkala was lovely it was just a bit too hot. Every day was 35°C+ with massive humidity and air con is uber expensive (doubling the price of accommodation from $16/day to $32!!) so we made the decision to head north, staying ahead of the upcoming monsoon season and get where the air is drier. We figure we can work anywhere so to Delhi we have come.
If I was prepared to say I was a little concerned about my feelings for India before I arrived, then it would be fair to say that the idea of Delhi terrified me. This is a massive heaving city with 16.7million souls fighting for their chance at a better life. The idea of the massive crowds, the beggars, the touts, the filth – oh man!!!! It all just seemed a bit much. So when I booked the hotel for Delhi I booked us a place right in the middle of the bazaar district using the logic – go hard or go home 😉
I could live here!!!!! This is one of the most amazing alive cities I have ever been in. It has everything! All of the bad stuff I listed above but also some of the biggest smiles, best food, great shopping, beautiful monuments, modern buildings, ancient ruins…. it has everything.
Our hotel is tucked down a tiny alleyway off the main road of the bazaar. It was a little confronting as we turned to go into the alley in the late afternoon halflight to find the entrance of the alleyway has 2 open urinals tucked into the wall. Nothing quite like walking past 2 blokes taking a pee as you go to your room everyday. That said – I guess it is better than some of the walls and trees we have walked past – Delhi men seem to feel that the world is one great big urinal.
The room we are in is great. Quiet as we are up the alley, bright as we are on the third floor and airconditioned and all for $24/day in the heart of a major city, breakfast included 😉 Our first day we just wandered the streets and below is a selection of some of the shots from that walk. The area we are in is old and full of tiny alleyways where people are busy getting on with day to day business and sorting through their lives. Indeed, Dave joined in the daily life thing by getting a hair cut and beard trim at a local barber (much to the delight of many watching locals).
For anyone that has ever wondered is ‘big city’ India really that awful I would have to say not so far for me. Of course not every big city will be the same but Delhi and I are off to a great start and I love it!
Our street in the evening. Our hotel is about halfway down this street and down a small side alley.
The view from our room reminds me of Cairo.
Game of life.
When I looked through this doorway and saw the light shining in the back I knew I wanted a shot so I sent Dave inside to just go and stand in. Then this gorgeous old man popped out just as we were leaving. Love it when something magical happens 🙂
Loved this man with his morning paper.
Dave at the barbers heheh
Beers in mugs as they don’t have a liquor license. We were officially drinking “coffee” 😉
You may have noticed that I have changed the way I am presenting these photos. I had it pointed out to me by a good friend that captions in the photos all in capitals felt very shouty (as in all caps indicates shouting in text) so I have gone with a different approach which also lets me describe the piccys in a bit more detail. Hope you don’t mind the changes – and sorry for shouting 😉