Saturday, 23 February 2013

Day 6

The twins are still in their wombs, maybe they will decide to join us next week or I might need to change my return tickets and extend my stay in Delhi.

It's only been 6 days since we arrived in Delhi but it feels like that was weeks ago. India really amazes me, there really is no way to describe the place, it's a mix of extreme opposites, it is chaotically peacefully, spiritually rich and so confronting.

I'm staying in Jungpura extension at the Indian Lux Homes, they are nice enough, two bed, two bath, reasonably clean, the only downside is the plumbing in my apartment is playing up and the temperature of the shower yo-yos constantly - they are looking into it and I hope that it will be fixed soon.  The staff here are great, I feel a little sory for the doorman, he is such a lovely guy who doesn't speak much english, he works very long hours, sometimes 24 hours, but he is always so helpful and smiling, we have got into the habit of ordering extra food at night to make sure he gets a hot meal.

I have to say I really like the neighbourhood, While I love going to the citywalk, its nice being in an areas where you dont get targeted for being a tourist and hassled by beggars.  In the evening this neighbourhood comes alive, there are street markets about 400 metres away, heaps of food stores, actually everything you need is within walking distance, the only challenge is trying to find it.

My parents are really starting to enjoy India, we have been to so many markets and shops, but my favourite is the old delhi markets and spice markets, we spent 5 hours walking around there today and it was amazing (once you are out of the red fort tourist trap vincitinty), I've been trying to find the holi colour powders to use for a christening type celebration for the twins and after going through a number of alleys, we were pointed to this slim alley (a one person width kind of alley), there I found the packages i was after with about 12 colours and it was only 20rp (40 cents), so I got 14 packets. Huge win as they were around 400 rp a packet at the mall.

As the twins are taking the time I took my parents down to the Taj Mahal, we left at 3.30am so we could be there at sunrise and beat the crowds, I used Rahul's driver and it was 7000 rp for the day (140 bucks). I have been really happy with his drivers, I have used Rahuls drivers a few times and they have all been very polite and punctual,  the only criticism I have, was the tour guide used in Agra as he took us to one of his backdoor commission shops and we couldn't get away, my parents have trouble saying no and this shop keeper was really pushy, and that annoyed me, and I made the tour guide aware of that, prior to going to the shop we were going to tip him, but after that experience and his Tom Cruise persona I didn't  want anything to do with him. It was clear he was getting throwbacks from everyone. Well enough of me ranting about that.


















10 comments:

  1. G'day Adrian. It's good to read your update. The longer the twins stay inside, the better for them, so enjoy your time with your parents. We hope our twins stay put for a while. :)

    We will be using Rahul's service as well (and it would be good to know which driver to avoid should we decide to go to Agra). We liked our stay at ILH B&B, and considered their apt at Jungpura Ext when we come back in April. However, my partner and I were hounded by touts in the area when we were there, so we decided not to go there again. We opted to go back to the S-Block area as it is near the M-Block market.

    Well matey, it's exciting times for you and your parents. Keep us posted.

    cheers!

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    1. Hey. The driver was great. It was just the tour guide that met us in Agra.

      Maybe you could ask not to have a tour guide or if you do get one tell them that you don't want to shop.

      Leading into the taj you can't take a car. So you need to go by electric vehicle or horse, camel etc. our guide didn't tell us there was a bus that cost 5rp. So ended up paying 200rp round trip. If you do go to the taj. Also check out Agra fort. It's amazing.

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  2. Nice update, as it seems surrogates are choosing natural birth over caesarean.

    Kiwi, we found all of Rahul's drivers to be polite, it was just the actual tour guide that Rahul arranged to be picked up in Agra that we found to be pushy and over-zealous, not the driver. We refused to get out of the car at the shops and that was the end of that.

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    1. Agree. He also tried to talk us out of seeing the Agra fort but rather wanted to take us to see the star of India. But wouldn't explain what that was.
      Instead of going to one of the places be suggested for lunch I requested that we go to McDonald's as I knew he wouldn't get commission there.

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    2. Adrian, we didn't know about the tour guide until he jumped in the car. We certainly didn't know about having to pay him because that wasn't included in the cost of the day. But, we also were shuffled in and out of shops around town where we knew he was making money. Being our 1st time there, it was too much at once for us to take on everything. Harris also insisted on McDonald's and we gave him 500 Rupees for the day. We figured it wasn't the 1st or last $10 we'd spend unplanned. All in all, the guide gave us a great tour and lots of information. The thing that I didn't like about it was having that imposed upon us with no warning. Had they asked us ahead of time, I'd likely have said yes.

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  3. Thanks for the update Adrian, you must of had Sunjay as a tour guide around Agra and the Taj, he had done the same for us.
    Rahul and his driver are so good, on our first journey to India we had Mr Denis, he fell asleep while in a traffic jam and tapped the mini truck in front of us and about 10 people fell off, I couldn't lock the doors fast enough.(funny now)
    Hope the twins arrive soon.
    I&D

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    1. Yes I think that was his name. Short guy. Nicely dressed and always on his phone and constantly doing secret handshakes with everyone.

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    2. I haven't had Denis luckily. I took a video of something funny and will try and upload. It was of a truck full of people with a side door open and a man sitting on the door.

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  4. Adrian,
    Glad you are finding Delhi enjoyable. Be careful with the Holi colors you purchase on the street. They often contain harsh dyes that will stay on your skin for a long time after you use them. We have many colleagues who play holi and then find that their blond hair is still pink as much as a month after the festivities. There are organic colors available in upscale malls and stores. Let us know if you need anything!

    Cheers,
    Douglas

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