Already changing plans

We expected to do a food tour today but I waited too long to book it and we had to bump it back a day. That meant we did all the peaceful things we expected to do on our last day in Delhi, figuring we’d need a rest day. No matter. We’re nothing if not adaptable.

We began by moving guesthouses. We didn’t want to but our preferred choice wasn’t available for our whole stay in Delhi and we had to book a different one for our first two days. It turned out fine though. After we met and chatted with our first host he moved us from the inexpensive basement room we’d booked to his largest park-view room, just because he enjoyed talking to us. And let me just insert here that so far the Indian people we’ve met rival the Irish in the gift of gab.

Mid morning found us checking in to the next guesthouse with a host who’s famous for being a friend to the traveler. He gave us a nonstop high speed data dump of what’s in the neighborhood, how to get where we’re going, and he even rearranged the day we’d planned to make it easier to navigate on public transportation. Then he drove us to our first stop, indicating eateries and points of interest along the way. When we finally got out of the car we were exhausted with the effort of remembering it all.

We began at the Lotus Temple, one of only 13 Baháʼí Houses of Worship in the world. This one in New Delhi has won several architecture awards and it’s beautiful from every angle. I was surprised at how many people were there on a week day and I learned that on some days there can be 100,000 visitors.

Jack never likes taking his shoes off so I went into the temple alone, well, with a couple of hundred others.

We walked up the steps in single file then lined up in rows guided by volunteers. We were invited to enter and pray or meditate in whatever way we wished, and were only asked to keep a respectful silence. No photos were allowed inside.

The inside looks exactly as you would imagine from the outside. Once we entered we could sit wherever we wanted. Most people spread out in the huge space on wide comfortable benches arranged in an arc. It was a lovely experience and we could take as much time as we wished. No one ushered us out and people left whenever they wanted.

I rejoined Jack and we took the Metro to Khan Market, the fancy shopping district, then walked to Lodhi Garden, a large city park.

We strolled north to south through the garden and visited a few of the historical structures, including tombs and a mosque. It was a beautiful day and the architecture kept us circling and photographing for a long time.

We aren’t very good at knocking off top ten lists and with such a short time in Delhi we know we’re missing a lot of Must See attractions but we go where the mood takes us. After the park we skipped a nearby important tomb and walked instead to the Lodhi art district to admire some street art and pretty gardens.

We stopped for a very late lunch at a restaurant I’d marked on my Google map a long time ago. We sampled a couple of South Indian specialties (I forgot to take photos) and a cooling cucumber-lemon drink.

By that time we called it a day and Uber’d back to our guesthouse. New Delhi traffic is an experience in itself and every time we’re in a car or tuktuk we consider it a win when we get to our destination in one piece.

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One Response to Already changing plans

  1. Suzy O'Hanlon Capenos

    Such lovely people you have met. How can one learn about a culture with out engaging in conversation. The Temples and grounds are amazing. Did you take the high speed train to the Taj Majal? Sounds like your hosts and tour guides have been helpful. Where is E.V. boat home? I am more curious regarding geography and history since following you. Thank you.

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