One of the exciting things in Delhi is to drive in a Tuk Tuk, some people call them Rickshaws but I’ve ridden in them in Thailand and we knew them as Tuk Tuks.
We wove in and out of the traffic, I turned my head and there was a truck about 4 inches from our left-hand side but my trusty driver never flinched, – well, I did a little bit but it was a lot of fun. It’s the sound of the traffic, the motorbikes weaving in front of you and other vehicles. Sometimes it’s the smell, the breeze on your face and always there is a sense of excitement. I’ve seen 8 people squeezed into one small space, I’ve seen very beautiful glamorous women in Saris, their scarves flowing in the breeze, using a tuk tuk as transport, and a crowd of smiling school children piled at dangerous levels in a vehicle.
We, as foreigners, use a tuk tuk to save money, to enjoy the experience but lets stop and think, driving you is a man who is raising a family and supporting his children through school and an extra 20 rupees is not the end of the world to us.
I could have walked the distance to the Khan Market from my hotel but I rode for the experience and walked back in 10 minutes for the ambience.
The Khan Market tweaked my interest, but I didn’t buy. The stores are for the most part international brands and yet there is a pure Indian flavour to the presentation.
I wandered quietly on my own, camera in hand but this is not what I’m here in India to do. I was interested in the garments, beautiful clothes, fabric so fine that it makes the heart jump and I found a restaurant for lunch, The big Chill.
It was an average little restaurant by my standards, but friendly and cool. The film posters were right out of LA, music from the 80s, the colours warm and inviting and the menu was huge, laced with lasagnes, pastas, chicken of all types and I had a grilled chicken and pesto panini, and a sorbet, finished with a small diet Pepsi. A great place for those tourists with non Indian palates.
Behind the scenes I found a little colour chaos and that’s what sparks my interest.
I opted to walk back to the hotel knowing that it was going to be a little bit of an army manoeuvre trying to cross the busy roads. With google maps on my phone, it guided me past food vendors on the pavements, groups of people with entitlement to their small patch of path. I congratulated myself at each of the 6 crossings I completed on the crazy traffic hugging roads.
Cosied up to the wall of the Christian cemetery were numerous stalls selling flowers for mourners and flower lovers. I stopped to visit and chat with the men who were preparing the bouquets. I imagine they sit there day after day and with the most simple tools they create beauty.
The temperature was in the 30’s and I enjoyed the sun on my skin and the warmth in the air, its a little humid so no need for moisturiser at this stage.
I returned to the hotel to work and finish some presentations.