Going Back to Delhi, to Delhi, to Dehli, Yo! I don't think so.
We made it to back to Delhi after taking the bus from hell, leaving Manali. Much to our chagrin we were back in Delhi and spent three days there, relaxing and seeing some things we didn't get to see the first time in Delhi. We were booking our trip to Rishikesh and had to come to Delhi to go back north again by train. We realized how much more we liked Delhi this time. I guess second time's a charm. Much cleaner than we remembered. (after seeing so many places that were so much dirtier) Delhi was our first "real city experience" in India and now that we have seen so much of India, we were able to better tolerate Delhi the second time around.
Johnny Rockets In New Delhi
Beef Eaters Unite!
We had been eating a lot of chicken lately. Although we like chicken, as a staple we find it a bit... boring. We got into Dehli on the train and headed back to the Hotel Kings Inn in Karol Bagh. One of the first things we did was head to Connaught Place, which we dreaded going to before, and ate at Johnny Rockets. We needed beef! No beef for over two months and we needed a real hamburger. Actually it wasn't beef and sort-of a real hamburger. It was water-buffalo, but who can really tell the difference? At any rate it, was delicious. The people working there danced to Kasey and the Sunshine Band and a couple of other songs even though we were practically the only ones there. It was fun, and the buffalo was indistinguishable from beef. We also hit Starbucks up every day too to get some REAL coffee in our systems. The coffee in India is generally powdered-instant and even when you find an espresso machine, many times.. they have no idea what to do with it to make a good coffee drink.
Gandhi Smriti Museum
The Last Steps of Mahatma Gandhi
While in Delhi the first time, we wanted to go to the Gandhi Smriti Museum. We had to get out and skipped it. This time in Delhi, we made it a point to go. Going to India without seeing something Gandhi related, is like not seeing the Taj Mahal. The Gandhi Smriti Museum is a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. It is the location where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life before he was assassinated on 30 January 1948 and took his last steps.
There is a shrine where he was shot and raised footprints making their way from his room to the spot where he was assassinated. It was interesting to see the life of Gandhi and read about his upbringing. Gandhi is on every monetary-paper unit in India. However, you really don't hear or see much more of India's most iconic person. I think the most interesting thing about the memorial was that it explained that Gandhi was ready to die, and in some ways, knew it was going to happen that day. He still remained true to himself and his beliefs even when faced with death... amazing!
Last Steps and The Spot
The World Peace Gong! Yeah we hit it!
Maxin' and Relaxin'
The other two days in Delhi, we relaxed and walked around. Ate at our favorite restaurants, took the metro to other parts of town, and simply enjoyed our time. It felt as if we were seasoned travelers now in India. We remember the way we felt when we first got to Delhi. How we felt when we were getting scammed and followed. This time in Delhi, we had no issues whatsoever. It was refreshing. We really enjoy the Kati Rolls at the Karol Bagh Market. I think we ate there a couple times in two days. They are just so damn good! If you don't know what a Kati Roll is... It's basically an Indian Curry dish served in a nan wrapper. Much like an Indian Burrito. We loved the Butter Chicken Rolls and the Tikka Masala Rolls the best. Really some great street food here!
Change In Perspective
It's interesting that you can go somewhere and hate it, and the next time you somewhere you love it. It's true for the opposite. We have been places and loved it, and returned and didn't like it anymore. I think that sometimes when you don't like something, it's because you don't understand it. It certainly was the case with Delhi. We didn't understand India before going to Delhi. Gandhi understood India. While he was traveling to Europe for his education, people tried to get him to drink alcohol and eat chicken. Gandhi never did! He held true to himself and his beliefs in all circumstances. He was in a foreign land, with different views and customs. Did he like it and tolerate or hate it and make judgements?
This is the importance of going somewhere that you are not familiar with. Assimilate to the place and try to tolerate the customs, culture and the people. Realize that at times while traveling, things won't go your way. Don't lose your head and make snap-judgements about a place, because the next time you visit, you might really like it.