Namaste from Delhi!
Landed in Delhi late due to the rather unnerving ‘breath of death’ smog that has shrouded Delhi for past few days. Now when I say landed, I’m pretty certain up in the cockpit it went something like this… “I’m blind, I’m blind, I can’t see a f’ing thing” … tarmac, bounce, skid, “crap, hit the brakes!”
“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to India.”
A seamless race through immigration, clapping my hands together and repeating Namaste to every airport personnel on my dash to baggage claim, hauling my worldly possessions I jumped aboard the bus to another terminal for my connecting flight.
Now, being an India newbie friends alert you to a few things; DON’T drink the water, NEVER trust a fart and be prepared for chest staring from almost every male you come across. Picture the scene if you will*; a windowless bus traveling at breakneck speed through the streets of Delhi seemingly dropping off and picking up whenever the driver felt like it, potholes that the moon would be proud of, me being the only female aboard and a rather sizeable chest that I’ve been (un)fortunate enough to be endowed with! The ‘gentlemen’ didn’t attempt to hide the gawking stares, even when I made obvious eye contact. I was met with roguish grins and head wobbles all around. What’s a ample chested woman meant to do? No idea, but a serious case of giggles and choosing to just ignore the admirers helped, but I swear I thought I was going to get a round of applause as I exited the bus.
I needn’t have endured the hair-raising bus trip, the pot hole chest jiggling or the staring as it turns out, because due to the ‘breath of death’ my flight to Dehradun was cancelled until the next day.
Shouting above the incessant honking horns to a very happy looking tuktuk driver for nearest hotel (not sure if it was the promise of a fare or a glance at my chest in his mirror that was making him smile!) but off we raced. “Namaste. Welcome to the Castle Blue Hotel miss” was the greeting from a little man who emanated Charlie Chaplain, in his disheveled black suit with trousers that looked like he stole them from his child and walking stick that he kicked as he waddled along. After viewing my room, hiding my smiling about the Chaplain images in my mind, the place was certainly not a ‘Castle’ or even ‘Blue’ so after negotiating the price from INR3,000 (approx. £35/$45) to INR1,300 (approx. £15/$20) I was happy to be able to crash for the night.
Next stop Dehradun and Rishikesh…
*You were hoping for a tragic fart story weren’t you? Sicko’s!