New Delhi – Part Two

Delhi, India
Part Deux
December 7th – 9th 2010

What have I learned about bus rides in India? Avoid them whenever possible.

I specifically told the bus-booking service I did NOT want a window seat. If anyone here remembers, I had encounters with small roaches along the walls of the bus during my Aurangabad to Ahmedabad journey on a “luxury” bus.

This “deluxe” bus was packed and overbooked, as usual. It was Africa all over again. The luggage compartment was full with who knows what so everyone had to bring their luggage on board. So our bags filled the aisles and people with no seats had to sit on the luggage. My neighbor who had the window seat seemed like a friendly guy although he was a bit strange. He shook my hand and said something which I didn’t quite understand, something about him being a driver.

Anyway, I go to sleep, hoping for the projected 8-10 hour journey to pass by quickly. I wake up in the middle of the night, my right pant leg pretty damp. I immediately had a horrible thought. No, I didn’t pee my pants. Rather, I thought my neighbor did, and it “connected” with me through the seats. Our seats were tight too so when we were asleep, our legs were in close proximity, and probably even touching.

So I pull out my headlamp from my bag, slowly shine the light over to my neighbor’s pants and sure enough, my suspicions were confirmed. His crotch area was wet and so were insides of his pant legs, as if he peed in his pants. You can tell by the darker shade of the peed-on areas. Earlier that night, the bus stopped for a bathroom break and he was one of the last ones out to pee but I don’t think he got to go because the bus started right back up really quickly. And now, he probably decided “Fuck it, I’m Indian and this in India, I’m going to pee in my pants in the bus.” (Hey, I know how much it hurts to hold your pee in during long journeys as I had the same experience in Morocco, so these days before long journeys on buses, I don’t drink much before-hand.)

I don’t call him out on it because I didn’t want to humiliate him. Or maybe I’ve been conditioned to think “Hey, it’s India, shit (or pee) happens”. I distance myself from him as much as I could that night, allowing half my ass to hang off my seat. Hours later, the moment my seat neighbors in front got out of the bus, I moved and got to knock off a couple hours of sleep.

A few hours later, Mr Pants-Pee-er (PP) starts doing a Hindi version of Tourette’s. He was literally shouting some random Hindi. I turned around and he looked half-asleep. Was he drunk? I noticed he was drinking *something* when I was still his neighbor. The Tourette’s went on for an hour and no one in the bus did or said anything to him so I turned around and asked him if he was ok. The guy, although half his eyelids were open and shouting random Hindi, was non-responsive to my enquiries. I was quite afraid that he shit his pants and he was so embarrassed he was shouting “FUCK MY LIFE!” in Hindi. No, I don’t know what he said but that’s what I would’ve screamed if I shit my pants.

When in India, do as the Indians do; Nothing, which is what I did. I just sat there, tried to go back to sleep, and Mr PP eventually fell back asleep. When we got to Delhi, I got out of that bus as fast as I could. I’d say it was a good day to do laundry.

New Delhi, India

Delhi, India

November 25th – 30th 2010

Notes:

  • Trash everywhere, especially on outskirts. The colors from trash colored the landscape. Lots of pigs running around in the trash.

  • Had steak and eggs with a Coke for Thanksgiving. Cut of steak was like the one found in pot roast. Not the greatest but it’ll do. I tried to keep it as American as possible.
  • If you buy street food, it most likely will come on a plate that’s lined with newspaper. I guess ink makes a good seasoning.
  • Good job Mr. Vegetable Seller. Sell those vegetables right outside a public restroom.
  • Lots of Asian looking Indians here in Delhi, supposedly from North-east India. They are discriminated against, especially the girls. That’s what I read in the papers. Also got a number of Nepalese here.

(Main Bazaar street in Paharganj.)

  • It feels good to do absolutely nothing sometimes. Struggling to find motivation to go sightseeing but nothing’s overwhelmingly interesting in Delhi, yet, it’s a great city to relax in (heavily populated, polluted, chaotic, yet has everything, which is what I find myself looking for). If I want to watch a movie, there are plenty of cinemas showing American movies. If I want to eat some foreign foods, plenty of places for it. If I want to buy something, there are shops for it. If I want to use the internet, lots of cheap places with fast connections. Watched Harry Potter Deathly Hallows, then after not wanting to eat Indian food for a while, decided spontaneously to eat at a joint next to the cinema (supposedly been selling biryani for 50 years). Then ate some McDonalds fudge sundae to balance it out.
  • Visited Humayun’s Tomb, Red Fort and Bangla Sahib (a Sikh temple). Impressive places.

(Humayun’s Tomb)

(Inside Humayun’s Tomb. The actual grave is in a crypt below.)

(Bangla Sahib)

(Mandatory for everyone to cover their heads. Bandanas provided outside.)

(No shoes inside Bangla Sahib.)

(Everyone praying. Guy in middle is the lead Sikh priest.)

(After exiting temple, everyone gets a glob of this warm, oily peanut brittle paste.)

(People washing (or cleansing sins?)  from a pool in the temple.)

  • Train station employee sent me on the wrong train and ended up about 30 km from where I am staying. Luckily a helpful guy showed me which bus to take and it took me back.

Delhi, India Pics