In case you hadn't heard...I'm in India. This morning I am writing you this blog post from my room in Delhi while I can hear some chanting not too far away and the street below me is just waking up. Yesterday was my first day...these are my two favourite pictures from the day: This gentleman offered us(me and The Roughley's an awesome photographer couple from Edmonton who just happened to be in Delhi at the same time so we arranged to meet) a seat while we were visiting Harzat Nizamuddin Tomb. Thursday nights they have a special worship that happens there. It was really cool to sit amongst the people and try to converse with them :) At the end of the night, the gentleman bought us all sweets from a street vendor--I assume(we didn't really see this all go down...to say that it was a bit chaotic would be an understatement)...so, I'm declaring it my first street food. Success--not only was it some sort of deep fried sugary syrup goodness, but this morning I am still not sick ;)
Yesterday was India's Republic Day. Delhi was in a very celebratory mood. I met my good friends the Laskin/Sargent clan and we went to the parade. Perhaps Baruch will be kind enough to write his CRAZY story of how he obtained the impossible to obtain tickets to the parade on their blog one day. At first, I was a bit hesitant to go because you could bring no cameras, no cell phones, no nothing...but, I was not disappointed. For one thing, it is really cool to sit amongst THOUSANDS of people and everyone is paying attention. I mean...no one is texting or taking pictures or anything. It makes you super aware of how much people are 'connected' with other people who aren't even there instead of being in the moment that is right in front of them. The other reason why it was a good idea not to have my camera is, well, it was a nice not to be worried about my gear while being introduced to the chaos and sensory overload that is India. The organized chaos of 'lining up' to get into the parade was a wonderful introduction to the crush of being somewhere popular in India. I was fearful for the small children and the elderly whom I was sure would be crushed and unable to breathe in the throngs...but, we all survived.
The parade itself is primarily a military parade(thus the no camera rule). It did not escape my attention that we were sitting in the birthplace of Ghandi watching enormous military displays, but somehow when the helicopters opened their 'trapdoors' and released the marigold petals on to the crowds you knew you were there to witness something special. My favourite brigade rode camels through the streets. Amazingly decorated, well trained camels. It was one of the moments I sighed and wished I had my camera, but...oh well ;) At the end, trick motorcyclists did amazing stunts...one guy drove on a motorcycle while sitting sideways, cross-legged and drinking a cup of tea. The parade ended with the release of hundreds of balloons that opened up Indian flags while confetti rained down on you. It was a sight I won't soon forget...but, I still wish I had a picture ;)
I was happy to see my friends...they are half way through their 6 month world trek and were excited to tell me all about their travels. It sounds INCREDIBLE...I wish I had more pictures of them, but most of our time together, I did not have my camera...for our friends, though..here we are in a rickshaw. Baruch drove on ahead of us in another one with all the baggage(they were catching a train).
The last images are of Isaac at a tomb literally around the corner from my home stay. It's interesting to see kids playing cricket in the yards of these two tombs. Isaac and I had decided to make a wee 'stop motion'(which will really be a gif when I finish it)...I wanted to show him my two favourite images from the series...You should really go and follow their blog(they are a bit behind, but will catch up for sure)...they will be here in India for another couple of weeks and then they are off on an African safari in Kenya. Makes me want to do this with our kids...
Well...if you actually read that...you are a rock star ;) And, if it made sense, then I am amazed that I have a clear enough head to make it all understood...hope you are all well back home.