We took a long and bumpy seven-hour bus ride from Rishikesh to Delhi. And then took a short, overpriced taxi ride to our hotel. In our travels, we had given a ride to a man with a propane cylinder. He works at a nice hotel in Delhi. We are staying at his hotel. Mr. Govind is courteous and introduced us to his friends. We took a taxi tour of Delhi at his suggestoin and went out to dinner with him and a friend.
Today the temperature was 44 degrees Celsius or about 115 degrees Fahrenheit. I try to remember the morning we hiked in the snow and wind to Everest Base Camp, but I am still hot and sweaty. I wanted to visit Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India, but they require all shoes and socks be removed. The bare soles of my feet fried on the solar-heated stone and I retreated. The soles of my feet are still burned.
The taxi tour was a good suggestion; the taxi was air-conditioned. We spent a lot of time riding around and looking without stopping. The driver took us to an air-conditioned shoppers’ emporium. Later he asked us to tuck our purchases into our knapsacks, hide our shopping bags and tell the hotel that we were looking, but not shopping. I guess he gets a commission on our purchases and did not want to share it with the hotel.
We continue to meet people. At the Red Fort, one family of nine people came up to us one by one, shook our hands and said, Hello. A serviceman with a rifle interpreted for us. They were from Rajistan. We are from America. they spoke no English. We spoke no Hindi. After that was established, each one came back up to us, shook our hands one by one and said, Hello. We rode a shared taxi with eight women in colored saris . They laughed and giggled about us the whole way. When we got off, they all waved, cheered and wished us well in Hindi.
We visited the samadhi of Gandhi and spent an afternoon at the National Museum. India has many treasures from a long cultural tradition.
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