Bathing in 30 degrees Celcius I left the comforts of the big city of Mumbai and arrived to the comforts of the big city Delhi….at 15 degrees!
It is freezing!!
Now how can a girl from Winterland Canada be cold in Delhi!!? I had forgotten how cold it gets here: it sounds rather ridiculous I know, but it a different beast here. The cold sets in to the marble flooring and walls in homes here and there are no central heating systems so the cold goes right in to your bones. And of course, I did not pack properly! In my head I had underestimated this cold! Bah!
My trip to Delhi began by way of an auto: known as a rickshaw in other places. I left Gursheel’s home in Mumbai, temperature +30, no available taxis, and so took an auto. It took us almost an hour to reach the airport but at least we did. The traffic was so heavy at that time: I have a newly minted respect for heavy traffic. No more road rage for me in Calgary!! I arrived hot and sweaty, dragging my 2 suitcases, backpack and one travel purse, all of which made the trip up the escalators and over the walkways that much more arduous.
I booked myself in, having to wait in a lineup behind a gaggle of young cricket players seeming to be very confused in the checking in process. After almost one hour, I was finally checked in, bags out of my way and I was free to roam the airport….for 20 minutes only! The adventure getting to the airport and then the wait in line, ate up my roaming time so now I was running again.
Subway chicken tikka sandwich? Check. Bottle of water? Check. Cookie for the tea on the flight (I just have to have that one cookie!)? Check.
The flight was uneventful and that was great as I was needing to relax. You know that feeling when you get seated and you see the possibility there will be no one to sit right next to you? A strong hope wells up inside of you and you begin to watch each person as they board: “ is that the ‘one’?” “Or that one?” “Please not THAT one”.…And then that moment of victory! NO ONE is going to sit beside you and in your head you do that happy dance? Yep, that was me on that flight!
The approach to Delhi proved to be as expected: very smoggy. I had been warned many times, and I have experienced that smog personally, but coming in to it is always somewhat disheartening. Only a couple times have I seen a green Delhi from above: maybe one day again.
Getting off the plane and finding my way to the prepaid taxi stand was easy enough but the battle to get my taxi organized was, as per usual. I am always confused and amazed at how such events are still an exercise of frustration. The pushing and complete disregard for any form of queuing completely takes away from the knowing kindnesses that I otherwise see and experience in India. I understand the archaic reasons for such behavior from the past, but still?? WHY?
Okay, I’m done my rant!
I am somewhat filled with melancholy each and every time I return to New Delhi, however it is not a feeling I despair over. It brings back some wonderful memories and some very deep spiritual enlightenments; it is uplifting. Delhi was my first introduction to India and so it will always remain closest in my heart. A great and historical city that I am blessed to be sharing a piece of its making!