For our third time to arrive back in noisy and poverty filled Delhi, Hannah and I checked into our back into our good ol' faithful hotel. The hotel Vishal.
Our first few hours were gobbled up by stressful travel planning and once again our plans changed.
We then met up with 3 of our friends from the Vipassna course, Erik from Estonia, Martina from Austria and Rahul from Delhi. As Rahul aka Ray was a local of Delhi he gave us a little tour around some of the sites in the area, stopping along the way at some different restaurants and trying the local food. The 5 of us were standing around a stainless steel table whilst sharing a semi spicy plate of chick peas with a bread that was a bit like a deep fried flat Yorkshire pudding! All of us just dipping our fingers into the dish aka eating true Indian style!!
From here we all jumped on an electric rickshaw to a bit more of a wealthy area. We paid the driver, then watched him bribe a police officer so that he didn't have to pay the full fine for exceeding the maximum amount of passengers... The policing system here is very "different" to say the least.
We all waddled along behind Ray, our trusty guide. Until he lead us up the stairs to a clean restaurant, which is something we haven't experienced yet in Delhi. Being overwhelmed with all vast selection of foods on the menu, Ray steeped up to once again and ordered 3 different dishes, one from northern India, one from the east and once from south. Once again all eating with hands sharing more spicy chick peas, a huge triangle shaped thin paper brea stuffed with aloo (potato) and a sweet dessert made of fruits, yoghurt and potato!!! Unique is the only word to describe it.
We finished the food and left the restaurant feeling full. Ray then lead us to a market called Jahn Pakt meaning "peoples lane" and it was jam packed to say the least!! There must have been over 10,000 people on a 750m road!
On our journey back to the hotel, Hannah was interviewed by a German news channel about the safety of women traveling India!
To finish off our day, we spent the next few hours chilling on the roof together.
At around 8.30pm it was then time to say our goodbyes and board our bus to Rishikesh.
One thing that have remained the same about our time in India so far is that nothing seems be simple here. After saying goodbye to our friends , we then had to followed a man from our tour company for about 15 minutes through the rather skeptical looking dark back streets of pahar ganj, across a busy main road with no traffic lights, until we finally reached a tour office.
Here we sat for a further 20 minutes until following a different staff member towards our bus, another 10 passed and we arrived at A bus stop.... No bus.
The man spoke very little English, but eventually he calls over a autorickshaw and tells us to get in with a 3rd staff member (from the same company). Double checking that we did not have to make any further payments, and about 3 minutes drive later we arrived at our bus! Boarding the busy bus with no ticket because it was still in the office, no English speaking staff. Whatever though, we made our bus and spent the next 9 hours on our bumpy, noisy, cold and whacky racer style ride to Rishikesh. Not to mention the thickest fog I have ever witnessed, it was as thick as custard!!