FIRST DAY IN NEW DELHI!
Slept like it was my job straight through the night. Woke up at 6, tried to relax in bed for a little longer...ended up dead to the world until 11 (which is an accomplishment here since people selling vegetables, fruits, services, meat or whatever walk up and down the street SHOUTING for your attention) yep. straight through it all! I think it was the bliss of the bed.
Mrs. Bennett took me shopping. Thank goodness. Because everything in America is tight and very NOT cotton. here: EVERYTHING is cotton. and light. and does not touch your skin. thank goodness.
We went to Delhi Hat, the swanky "upscale" shopping place. vendors were set up with lots of clothes, scarves, shoes. All the colors and embroidery!
I prided myself in not caving in to all the light fabrics, soft scarves and pretty patterns and designs and stamped cloth. I only bought 5 shirts ((Kurtas)) and a pair of pants, ((Churidar)) non traditional loose at the waist and theighs, with a draw string to gather it since two of me could probably fit inside, and a light scarf ((dupatta)) and trust me: this was holding back) also a light scarf... all for the pricce of $50. and SO WORTH IT. because the shirts are so nice and light and off the skin. and today hit 108 DEGREES. Needless to say, i wanted no clothes on at all.
Next was INA market. It's where they get everthing. You think i'm exaggerating? we are talking peanut butter to goat intestines. kitchenware, shoes, clothes...especially places where you can buy material and take to the tailers (a couple stalls down) and have it fitted and made to your size in just a couple days. the silks and sparkes were lovely, but mostly for saris and the whole outfit (kurta, churidar, and dupatta matching color and, most difficultly, pattern)
Isles were narrow and packed with people (though not two lane shoulder to shoulder like week days). With uneven ground/slate beneath you feet, and in some places a gutter ran right down the middle.
On the other side you could do your food shopping as well! spices, special "American shopes" for the much sought coke and pringles type stuff. Then your nose would start to pick up what was about to be found next. Meat. The flies found it too, in hordes. fish were stacked upon each other. Chickens...live and present versions as well as killed, plucked and skinned versions were in the same squashed in booth. goats, skinned and upside down hung for your picking pleasure. Blood was rinsed into those convenient gutters between your feet. (Made me decide that maybe I should wear boots despite the heat after all) then, goat heads, Goat intestines, goat toungs. Insides displayed next to the muscular outside as well. A box of chicken feet was also spotted. (ignorant me: what do you use a chickens foot for?)
I had a shirt made.. picked out the material and was led to the tailors who handed me a book and Dawn Bennett told me to flip through and pick a style for the kuri (short kurta) that iwanted. He measured me and told me to come back in two days. It was a simple material...the sparkles and stamped patterns are more expensive and can only be bought as a set.
After wandering through a few more isles we decided to leave...just in time. The heat started to catch up with me and i could feel myself get wobbly. Didnt realize what a dehydrated, jetlagged wreck i was until everything got MORE hazy... more hazy then the permenant smog that settles over the hot, dusty city. and a ringing in my ears blockd out the noisy crowd. *$#*^#@* so I leaned on Dawn's shoulder, and nice Indian man got me stool and I will congradulate myself on the fact that i did NOT hit the ground (very unpleasent, even once out of the market on the street) . HAH. then proceeded to chug a liter of water. A few minutes and I was up and rolling.
We caught one of their "taxi" type vehicles. It has three wheels and thank goodness, open sides too. so the wind, dust, and various smells (but most importantly ..the wind) can blow through and past while you are driven.
back at the house for a little then i met The Group here of people from the church. They were having a going away party for a friend there. As Luke-and-Joel's-Friend-Anna i was introduced and greeted by lots of people with lovely faces and rather complicated names. but it was a great time and i (gingerly) tried some "not -too-spicy" indian food. And they all asked how i was doing and what i thought of the food. I was also informed it will be fine if i have to leave mid sermon tomorrow morning at church. It's good to know they all understand what I will probably be going through. envious arent you? admit it. it's worth it.
Hot, dusty ride back Home. and now...to sleep. fans cranked. windows closed! It is always hot and dusty here, no matter what time of day. Even without people and heav(ier) traffic, the dust still remains in the air, only settling on your hair and face.
dessert was for me since I didnt eat a whole ton. toast with CARMEL TOFFEE spread on top, and honey from the Himalayas! people back home settle way too easily, because we NEED this stuff. Add a shelf. right next to the peanut butter and nutella. grocery store owners back inthe U.S. are capitalizing on our ignorance...because there should be a demand for that. I'm just saying..