Great first day!
The flights went well. Watched a movie and chatted a lot on the first flight. Walked around and around Singapore airport for a couple of hours. Second flight was nearly as long, but managed a couple of hours sleep as we arrived at about 3.30 am Australian time.
Ashok was at the airport to meet us with a beautiful lae of devine smelling red roses. Then he drove us to the hotel which is lovely … The Imperial.
We had a reasonable amount of sleep. MA did better than me. We had a lovely long breakfast then a swim, sauna, steam, spa. Then off with Ashok to explore Delhi. It hasn’t shocked me anywhere as much as I expected from what people have told me. I think it is similar to Vietnam. Fairly polluted, not as bad as Hong Kong or Shenzen though.
Our first stop was a Seikh temple which was very interesting. We had to cover our shoulders and hair. It wasn’t flash to look at but was interesting in that they have a kitchen next door where they feed people for nothing. He took us through the kitchens and showed us the supply areas. All of the food is donated and there are business people sitting down next to beggars eating their food. I got the impression that it is a bit of a pilgrimage place. Then we headed to Presidential Palace and the Indian Gate … which resembles the Arc d’ Triomphe but is to commemorate the soldiers from World War 1. It was very interesting wandering around there looking at all of the people and the food that they were selling.
After that off to Gandhi’s memorial … which is a huge park. Then MA mentioned that she wanted to buy a rug while in India. To give Ashok his due, he said … look if you are going to do something like that you have to go to a decent place. He took us to a place … but he said, just have a look and get an idea of prices. Two hours later, no rug, we left. They really are beautiful but a lot of money.
So, back at the hotel now and have booked yoga for an hour then dinner.
Ashok is a lovely cut of a man. Very genuine. My gut was right … I really, really trust him. I am very sure that he will do the right thing all along the way. He told us first up that he wants to show us the real India … not just all of the pretty places. He certainly mixed it up today, which was great.
Tomorrow he has a professional guide organised for several well known places. Lisa Collie has been in touch and we will meet her tomorrow afternoon for some sightseeing and dinner tomorrow night which will be great. I’m pretty sure Michael is coming as well. They are people that John and I met in Norway last year. He is very high up in the Australian Army and he works for the High Commission here.
Well, I have bashed this out in 2 minutes as wifi isn’t free, so don’t pick on style, grammar or spelling.