06 May 2014

Spring Break India: Temple Visits And a Familiar Rooftop in Old Delhi = Lovefest!

I have been trying to sit down and write this post for what seems like forever . . . For some bizarre reason, I have been completely swamped out of my yingyang since I got back from India. 

I suppose I shouldn't be surprised: it is the end of the school year. In fact, I can't quite believe that there are only 5 weeks left. What??!! Doesn't it seem like I just moved to Singapore? Right. And now two years have come and gone, here in this land of humidity. 

Everything moves so quickly these days.

My last day in Delhi was sort of a hodgepodge of places I've been and new places I wanted to go. I just wanted to hang out and enjoy what would be my last day in India for a while. Relax a bit and take things slow.

Gajendar picked me up at noon and we started off at an art complex that I had become familiar with in December. I love this space. It's in this really interesting area of Delhi, in an amazingly diverse neighborhood. It's called Khoj, and I want to apply to do something there. Mainly I'd like to reconfigure the burnt out building across the street from the art space.

I'm looking into it . . . I'll keep you posted.

After seeing some great art at Khoj, we stopped off in Defense Colony for some more amazing food. See those donut looking things below? My new fave. Vada, vada, vada. All day long, vada. Usually found in the appetizer section on the menu, they are a savory fritter-type snack. So, so good.

Then we stopped off in Old Delhi. I described Old Delhi here the best when I first visited the place. This time I was able to finally take a great shot of the wiring in the neighborhood (above). Oh the tangled web we weave . . .

I actually think I was able to capture a lot more of the essence of Old Delhi in these photographs compared to the first time I was there. I think it's because I was in such shock looking around during my first trip that I couldn't quite take it all in. This time I knew what to expect, so I was able to focus more. And it was incredible.

We went to the roof in the spice market again. It was just as colorful and vibrant as I remembered.

Drying out papadums and roses . . . Such a view! And you can tell by these images that the weather was being gorgeous!

Buildings like TetrisTuk tuk jams.

Then we went to the Red Fort. The Red Fort was the ceremonial and political center of the government, as well as the residence of the Mughal emperors of India for nearly 200 years (until 1857). I had never been to the Red Fort before. It was giant and expansive, the wall went on forever.  

Driving about town before stopping at some temples . . . 

The first temple we stopped at was a Hindu temple. There were lots of fun things to look at, plus they were setting up for a huge wedding. So what with walking into someone's mouth (below) to looking at people draping things in orange fabric, I was pretty much in heaven.

There also seemed to be a large number of carnival-type "weigh yourself/guess my weight" games sitting around. People weren't using them, but they were all lit up like they were supposed to be used. I quite fancied them . . . 

The second temple we went to was a Sikh temple. All heads--male and female--should be covered upon entering the space. My hair was in a bun on the top of my head, so I felt I resembled one of Snow White's dwarfs

The interior of the space was almost solid gold. And I was in awe of the kitchen that was serving free meals to anyone and everyone. The eating space is pictured below.

The next morning, on my way to the airport, I stopped off at this monument in the neighborhood where I was staying. I didn't want to leave India. 

When I arrived back in Singapore, I was at dinner with a friend (who's from India) and we were discussing why I liked India so much. The only way I could think to link it up logically is that the vibrancy of India reminds me of the vibrancy of Mexico. Mexico is near my home state of Texas. I've visited Mexico many times and absolutely love it (colors and music!!), and I miss Texas very much. So maybe there is a correlation? Maybe?

I don't know. Sounds pretty farfetched to me . . . All I know is that I plan to keep going back to India as much as possible, living there for year to work with Ladli. Perhaps someday I'll be able to make sense of it all, and maybe even make some great artwork about all of these experiences. We shall see.

I'll see you again soon . . . India love.