Friday, 19 October 2012

Modern Muslim and the Christmas fairy hit Delhi

DAY 20 Kerala to Delhi
Today we say goodbye to our driver Mahesh who has driven us with such care over 2000 km's around southern India.
Funnily enough when people say there are no rules on the road in India, they are wrong. There are rules, but just different ones to the ones we know! We saw only one minor accident, and one roadkill - a dog. They drive with aggressive patience and they expect to meet hazards on the roads ....Driving was slow, either because of the pot holes, steep inclines and hair pin bends, or because of the oncoming traffic on the wrong side of the road...
We saw no evidence of road-rage and they are brilliant at judging spaces and squeezing though the most improbable places...Once we opened our eyes and stopped squealing at every near miss, we really enjoyed our drive time - Thank you Mahesh!




Our trip in India has reached the end for some of us and we are all off to different places...
A huge thank you to Miss India for allowing me to gate crash her Fab India tour. To have had the benefit of your local knowledge, and to be able to tag along when all the hard work has been done was lovely....You have devised such a wonderful diverse itinerary so show us Incredible India, I would never have been able to experience half of this on my own... bisous....
Three cheers also to Joseph our wonderful Travel Agent.
To the other ladies I have meet, have a safe trip home, it has been great to get to know you and look forward to hearing all about your future travels.
Delhi here we come....




Determined to see something of the real Delhi on arrival, we drop our bags at Saket B & B who were great at helping us make a plan, get a driver etc and will be a wonderful place for us to stay....
We rush out so quickly, keen not to miss the sunset mystical singing at the Hazrat Nizammudin Dargah Mosque one of the most beautiful Islamic Holy shrines in Delhi




There is quite a crush as people push through the narrow bazaar leading into the Mosque. People are yelling at us to leave our shoes with them, but we can't really stop as we are carried along in a tide of humanity, beggars reaching out for money, tourists all looking bewildered and tightly clutching their valuables...and young men dressed for prayers jostling and bumping....




At this point we notice all the women around us have their heads covered and
I've rushed out without my head scarf.....In a bend in the tight narrow streets there is nook to stop and quickly barter for a scarf - I choose an emerald green one with what looks like gold tinsel around the edge...Perfect to bring out at again at Christmas as a happy memory....




The stall is full of flowers and other interesting objects, but there is no time to linger, the crowd are in a rush and we want to get to, where ever they want to get to!




We take off our shoes and carrying them hidden under our clothes with us feeling like naughty schoolgirls smuggling chewing gum into the classroom...We are stopped at the entrance and asked for a donation for the children and schooling and to sign a foreigners book......phew! We thought we were going to be frisked for our footwear....
Once inside we find a piece of cool, unoccupied marble and sit down. It's hot even in the early evening and the sticky air full of the sweet smell on incense...
Sporting my bright green headwear I discreetly try to fan myself, but an old man carrying a pankhra - a large hand held fan made from banana leaves comes over and with big sweeping movements wafts cool air over the top of us and along with it attracts the attention of all those not deep in prayer... A young girl is tugging at my scarf asking for money.
The Muslim ladies behind have a go at redesigning my friend's head attire from French Chic to Modern Muslim, she looks great.
Then we notice the queue's of men lining up with a plate, some flowers and my green shawl. My scarf is not what the latest best dressed Muslim lady wears for Thursday prayers, but offering material and I'm a lost cause.....
Modern Muslim is right into the atmosphere, smiling firmly at the at the beggars and chatting with the tourists, the devotional singing we come to listen to is not happening but who cares this is amazing, even looking like a right fairy....
Little Wandering Wren

Location:Kerala to Delhi

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