Monday, October 31, 2011


On Saturday morning we finished packing up, sent our trunks to the attic, and had a last lunch with Bhavenesh in the school dining room. At 1:30 we went down to the gate and met our taxi. We have two fairly large suitcases and our backpacks. After a lovely tea in Dehra Dun with Ajit and his sister, we boarded the Shatabdi train for Delhi. Riding through the night we caught many glimpses of Diwali lights still decorating homes and villages. The most common sight was strings of vertical lights lined up from roof to ground floor on buildings tall and short. Some were festooned in loops. Unfortunately, photographing these from a moving train in the dark was totally impossible.

When we arrived at our hotel, the Bon Lon Inn ("A Little Bit of Heaven") in Karol Bagh, the workers all greeted us as familiar customers (although the last visit was in May). The manager apologized that we would be in a small room for one night but could move into a larger room first thing in the morning. We were so tired that we were happy to fall into any bed (and these are comfortable, with mattresses that actually give a little when you lie on them). Sure enough, we moved next door right after breakfast. We are on the top floor and it is quiet, except for the pigeon roost at the top of our window. But they are only noisy during the day. I wouldn't exactly call this a "large" room, but with our suitcases tucked into the closet, we can get around. We have two armchairs with a small table between for our simple meal once a day (cheese, crackers, fruit). There is also a tiny desk with a chair right in front of the bathroom door. Dan has managed to set the air conditioner at a setting that doesn't get too hot or cold (not a simple proposition!).

On Sunday we didn't do much of anything, preferring to get settled and loaf. We left about 4:30 to try to get to Greater Kailash Market and the FabIndia stores there. That involved a 10-minute walk to the Metro station, two changes of lines (blue to yellow to violet), a cycle rickshaw ride to the wrong market, a scooter rickshaw to the right one, and then a scooter rickshaw to Defence Colony. We did find the FabIndia, but I couldn't really get into shopping, although I did buy an aqua linen shirt. We walked through the home furnishing stores: lots of beautiful things but none we wanted to buy.

At Defence Colony, we found the Swagath restaurant where we met our friends Momo & Tsering, their son Siddarth and his girlfriend Rachita, and Glenn for dinner. A pleasant time for all, with a variety of dishes including Mangalorean prawns and fish kabobs. Glenn is flying out today.

After we parted, we caught another cycle rickshaw to the nearest Metro station. By 9:00 the crowds had thinned out and it was a pleasant ride back to the hotel. The front car of each train is for ladies only, and I've appreciated not being crowded into the men!

Today:  Dilli Haat and I promise some pictures tomorrow!

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