Tuesday, January 31, 2012

54 Hours

I'm in New Delhi now and I forgot how things are here in the guest house. It's 9:30pm and I'm now finishing dinner. The house boy just asked me what time I would like breakfast tomorrow, if I wanted coffee or tea, and what did I want for breakfast. Silly questions, because I have no idea what I want for breakfast until I wake up, and I want breakfast when I wake up. And I wake up when I wake up. But what I told him was 8:30, so I guess I better set my alarm clock.

I forgot to mention, the taxi driver yesterday that brought me from Meerut to Delhi is like every other driver in India and keeps his horn blaring more that it is quiet. What I thought was funny was that the area on his steering wheel where he presses for the horn was so worn through that you could actually see the electrical contacts.

It's been an awesome trip. I have 54 hours left before I step foot on the airplane that will take me out of India. I'm going to miss the never ending noise, the narrow alleys, moving aside to give the cows their right of way. It won't be the same walking along the road keeping a vigilant eye out for anything and everything that wants to run me over. I'm going to miss the $16 daily car and driver, the house boys and girls that wait for my next request. I'm going to miss all the people that stared at me everywhere I went, the attention I got when I pulled my camera out, the beautiful faces that wait to be photographed. I'm going to miss the stimulating flavors of true Indian food, the cheap street food that took courage to eat the first time but now is an addiction. I'm going to miss walking 10 plus kilometers every day and the sights and sounds that came along with it. I'm going to miss the one dollar dinners and $8 body massages. I'm going to miss the beautiful smiles and warm hearts.

Not including time with relatives my favorite memories are those in the Mumbai slums that opened their doors to me and offered me drinks, snacks and dinner. I remember the little boy in rags across the street from Shilpa's flowershop that worked hard to help his father in the street side rickshaw repair stall, he worked harder in one hour than I worked in my entire life. His commitment to work hard was admirable. I'll remember driver that we had in south India for three weeks that took such good care of me and was always concerned when I was feeling under the weather. I'll remember the bus load of people that stopped so I could take everyone's photo. I'll remember all of the kind hearted people in Sarafa Market that gave me free tea and food and showed me places I wouldn't have otherwise seen. And I'll remember the bus load of schoolboys in Kodaikanal that mobbed me like I was a movie star asking questions and taking my photos.

These 89 days have been memorable and each day full of different memories. I'm looking forward to my next return soon, and I'm ready to bring anyone that wants to come along!!

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