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Published: February 11th 2020
You hear that word continually as you walk through the streets.
It's a greeting and practically everyone you meet in the street shouts it out to you. Everyone wants to know all about you. " Where you from?" "Where you going?" "Let me take you, very cheap " " You want to go shopping mall? Cannot walk there!" " you want tuk tuk?"
On and on to the point where your brain hurts. All this as you're trying to negotiate sleeping dogs, cows picking through heaps of garbage and huge piles of what these animals leave behind! Dust and grime is ankle deep and potholes and drains threaten to swallow you up.
While all this is going on bikes and tuk tuks come at you from all directions beeping as loud as they can. It's up to you to move out of their way.
Welcome to India!!
So let me back track.
Miraculously our plane took off dead on time at 6am from Phuket to New Delhi. Four and a half hours later we were at the back of a huge queue waiting to get through immigration. We'd filled in a visa online, filled in forms with
endless questions on the plane before getting off but still they wanted more.
Suddenly out of nowhere we were directed out of the queue and fast tracked.
Still, the whole process had taken ages and by the time we got to collect our luggage our bags were sitting there along with just a few others. The rest had long gone.
As we left the airport building there was our pre ordered taxi man with our name and Hotel Amex held up.
He directed us to his car. What a dump! It was tiny and bashed and scratched all over and no space in the boot for luggage. He opened the back door and clouds of dust flew about as we struggled to get in with our back packs on.
He set off like a maniac beeping his horn warning everyone to get out if his way.
40 minutes later we arrived at the hotel. It was down a little grubby alley way but once inside it seemed quite clean and orderly as was the room ( by Indian standards).
We spent the rest of the day and the following day getting to know our way around,
finding the best places to eat and learning how to deal with the constant pestering. Some genuinely wanted to help but most had an ulterior motive.
We met a lovely couple from America and spent an afternoon and evening together exchanging tracel stories and exploring the Indian menus.
At 5am next morning we were sat on the railway station waiting for our train to Agra.
Surprisingly it arrived early and set off dead on 6am the scheduled time.
Let's hope it continues that way!
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