Delhi redeems itself

Trip Start Sep 05, 2010
Trip End Aug 21, 2011

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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tricia :

Woke up to rain (what??) but, undaunted, Dan set off again to organize flights for all of us and Pols, Mikey, Alan and I set off for Red Fort. We managed to get a man and his friends (2 tut tuts) and agreed a price to the Red Fort – Mikey and Polly in one, Alan and Tricia in the other.  Huge traffic as usual, but anyway after 5 mins – Mikey's tut tut stopped, another chap got in, and his driver said he had run out of fuel.  Our driver drew alongside and declared, after much conversation between them, our driver declared that Red Fort was closed today (we knew it absolutely wasn't!).  They had obviously picked up a better deal, so we clambered out, procured two more tut tuts and meandered on to the Red Fort.  It was raining quite consistently by now and we decided the outside of the Fort was enough fort to see and crossed to the Jain Temple.  As interesting as it looked, we would have had to remove our shoes in the mud to look inside and we chickened out.  We wandered around a few stalls and a man with one leg came alongside and insisted he knew the best places to go in the Bazaar (Chowdni Chowk) so followed him along.  The spaghetti of electrical wires, with climbing monkeys, overhead did not bear thinking about in all that rain so we stalwartly carried on. So much to see and so tempting to go mad in the shopping department, but we were very resolute and came away with a false moustoche, toy tut tut and whacky car horn (for Dan's birthday the next day) and a length of sari for my curtains – did well!  We grabbed two more cycle rickshaws to take us through the mud and dense traffic to a huge mosque.  Got up the steps to find it was closed for prayer for a while so we decided to abandon ship and negotiated two more tut tuts to Connaught Square where Dan was waiting for money for our flights.  Left him and Alan finalizing flights and Polly, Mikey and I escaped for a Costa lunch – very nice. 

Later that evening, we set off from the hotel, on foot to the local bazaar for a last Indian shopping session.  All very good, but Mikey had a nasty shock when he saw a cycle rickshaw crash into another one and a mother and child were catapulted out and they both landed on the ground.  Lots of altercation, but he thinks they were alright. We got a couple of cycle rickshaws to take us back with super young drivers – they opted to race and ours was determined to win.  We rocketed back at great speed which was a trifle scarey as he kept turning round to Pols and I with a lovely grin to see if we were still on board!  All in packing mode for the next day, then we ventured out for a Thali.  Opted for a very local restaurant opposite (A vegetable thali of curry, dal, pickle, yoghurt and rice about 1 english pound!) a brave and possibly stupid move which time will tell.  After, Pols went in search of wrapping paper – next shop said one stall holder.  It's amazing what you can buy in India – next shop did indeed have wrapping paper, and sellotape, amongst the nuts, drinks, toys and hundreds of other things. Twelve sheets of paper and the tape cost about 1pound 20 pence – wonderful. Off to bed to prepare for the excitement of Nepal tomorrow.
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