Sunday, January 10th, 2016
The dynamics of the India trip were about to change. Some of our crew would remain the same, but we would soon be losing two of the members of our travel family while gaining a bunch of new ones. We headed downstairs to prepare for the tour of Old Delhi, and also got to meet a few of the newbies. Four of them were older women that Trevor would nickname the “Golden Girls.” One of them happened to live only about 15 minutes away from our home back in the states. Small world!
Our Old Delhi tour guide was young and very well dressed, and we joined him on the fresh and modern metro. The metro cars in Delhi were actually more modern than the ones we use back in Washington DC. Once we got to our destination, we walked passed people sitting on the side of the street next to scales, and children trying to sell unusually large balloons to everyone. The number of scales remain a mystery to me.
Our first visit was up some stairs to a mosque, which we had to cover ourselves for as you do for most religious ventures. Then we were off to Old Delhi where electrical cables dangled precariously overhead as monkey ran overtop of them.
We watched a local making Chai and got to drink the finished product. Jim was not too pleased when he ended up wearing half of mine. Sorry, Jim! I’m all thumbs!
We strolled through several markets displaying spices, legumes, teas, deserts, pickles, cheeses, and snack mixes as the guide shared stories of life in Old Delhi.
Then we took a rickshaw to the restaurant he suggested for their delicious lassis and paranthas.
After lunch, we visited a Sikh temple. Our heads had to be covered, and our feet and hands needed to be washed before entering. The temple was beautiful and they sincerely seemed like they were out to help those in need without expecting anything in return. I was happy to donate. We even got to pass through the kitchen which was run by volunteers. They served free meals several times a day in the nearby cafeteria to those in need.
Our tour was coming to a close, but not without drama. One of our crew members, had a bit of a meltdown after his wallet was stolen during a very crowded metro ride, and he ended up taking all his anger out on our guide. He had been warned in the past about his careless wallet placement, and I think his pride was just a little hurt. I still felt horrible for the guide who was close to tears after experiencing his wrath. The guide suggested we travel in any train we felt we’d be safest in. I apologized to him for the ordeal, thanked him for the tour and then we took the train back to the hotel.
Once we got to the “Crossroads Bar and Restaurant”, we ordered food and drinks, then Jules read the winners of the nominations as follows:
Sexiest Male: Benny (who also won “Most Helpful Person”)
Sexiest Female: Verena (who also won “Cleanest Person”)
Dirtiest Mind: a fair tie between Jim and Amelia
Biggest Spender: Marguerite (a no brainer to us all)
Best Truck Job Employee: Trevor
Favorite Place Visited: The Taj Mahal
Funniest Moment: The girls losing their minds shopping at the silk factory
Worst Kept Secret: Pooping! (“Delhi Belly” is real folks!)
After our meal, a bunch of us went out on a mission to find pens to lay out in front of Rick’s hotel room to remind him of the psychotic peddlers in Agra. We had no luck, so we all decided to grab a beer at the Spicy Bar and Restaurant before bed.
Jump Back to Part 16: Delhi Belly & Sticky Fingers
Jump Ahead to Part 18: Farewells & Shopping with the Swear Jar
Start from the Beginning at Part 1: Don’t Forget to Pack Your Anxiety