I’m going to share a snippet of a journal entry I wrote prior to arriving in Delhi, India.
Saturday, May 31st, 4:45pm:
We are now boarding the train to Delhi. It is scheduled to depart at 5:15pm, and arrive late tomorrow morning in Old Delhi. It’s hard to believe we are on the last leg of our travels in India. And that this is our last train ride. I hope we do many more trips via train in the future. It is quite an amazing way to travel! I am really going to miss this… the cool air blowing on my face, letting my feet dangle in freedom over the tracks, the chai tea vendors coming through every half hour… A month ago I never thought I’d say this, but I’ve really fallen in love with India… and I already want to come back.
When we arrived in Delhi, we had already been traveling through India for quite some time, so I feel like we were more prepared to face this bustling city. Since our train was arriving at the station in Old Delhi, we wanted to sight-see this part of the city first. The train station was just a kilometer away from the Red Fort, so we decided to head there on foot (which of course, lead to disappointing many eager tuktuk drivers). After admiring the Red Fort, we realized that Jama Masjid (a very large mosque in Old Delhi) was just 1.5 kilometers further down the road. Not wanting to hassle with a tuktuk driver over such a short distance, we set out on foot again. When we arrived at the mosque, we were met with a bit of a surprise. The staff at the entrance almost wouldn’t let us through because we were foreigners and they wanted us to pay. Entering the mosque is free, however, they charge a “camera” fee to all tourists. We said that we were not going to take any pictures, and that we just wanted to take a look around. This caused quite a commotion, but the eventually let us in. So you can have a visual, below is a picture of the Mosque by India Africa Connect…We eventually made it to a hotel recommended by our guidebook in Main Bazaar. We knew finding inexpensive lodging in Delhi was going to be difficult, but after some bargaining, we landed a deal at Hotel Namaskar. It wasn’t the nicest place, but it was air conditioned and inexpensive. We did more exploring, sight seeing, and souvenir shopping in Delhi the next day. I added another Starbucks mug to my growing global collection. We were able to meet up with a missionary family during our visit. Jared had known Pastor Abraham and his family for years. Since he was a young boy, Pastor Abraham had spoke at his church each year when he visited the States. It was amazing to hear about the work God is doing in India. We had many mixed feelings as were were leaving India. We had both grown to love the country, and we were sad it was time to move on already. However, we were also very excited about our layover in Dubai. As we boarded the plane, we were already dreaming of returning to this amazing country.