We arrived towards five o'clock in the morning at Delhi International Airport. The taxi journey at this early hour was an experience in itself. Amazed I looked out the window; there was already so much life to be observed. People, who had slept under trees were geting up and brushing their teeth at the roadside. On open green areas people were squatting, emptying their bowls.
We passed a crashed vehicle at the road side. Our taxi driver added: "They were sleep driving at night".
Our accommodation was in the busy and vibrant quarter of Delhi, Paharganj. Here the road had enormous pot holes and was not tarred in places. There was honking and hooting everywhere, stalls were being built up and the rubbish was being rummaged or people were bargaining.
We used our short time in Delhi just letting time pass, sitting in street cafes and observing the coming and going in front of us. A landlord, who tried to chase some begging children away gave up but finally gave a crippled boy a Coke and a warm meal and a girl a few Rupies. They left happily.
The contrasts in New Delhi are impressive. There are many small shops or restaurants which seem to be quite grubby (these are the majority) but there are shopping centres with Benetton shops and Mc Donalds too.
Susanne 10 June 2005
The long journy to Leh was not so easy.
Delhi, Paharganj. 100m from our hotel.