Friday, March 26, 2010

Jack Attack Old Delhi and more

I used the bicycle that I purchased in New Delhi (see previous post) to tool around Old Delhi and around the outskirts of New Delhi the next day. I saw many interesting sights (Old Fort, Red Mosque [Jama Masjid], Lotus Temple and Akshardham Temple - the World's Largest Comprehensive Hindu Temple), but the really interesting thing was the people that I saw in the process. Cycling through the city (and by city, I mean all over all parts of Delhi) gave me a unique perspective on the city that most tourists don't get. I got to travel slow enough (and at my own pace) that I actually got to see things. Police officers, media vans parked by the Central Secretariat [Indian-version of Congress], fellow cyclists, families, small alleys, and street vendors geared toward locals (where I ate breakfast the first morning). The completely crammed city/market streets of Old Delhi were filled, and I mean absolutely filled - it took almost an hour to go about 1/2 mile - with pedestrians, cyclists, cycle-rickshaws, men pulling carts, oxen pulling carts, auto-rickshaws, and actual autos.

The stares definitely got annoying, but the experience was still completely worth it. What a way to see Delhi!

The point of this picture was to capture the man in the bottom right corner, the McDonald's and Purana Qila [Old Fort] in the distance, built in the 16th century.

Notice the security guard

I continued to be inspired by the things I learned about Gandhi and his life and his pursue of ahimsa (non-violence). He basically inspired a nation of millions to passionately resist British rule but to do it non-violently. Can you imagine motivating and recruiting millions of people to non-violently resist horrible, at times murderous rule? It's just awe-inspiring.

Gandhi's Tomb

Lotus Temple

Akshardham Temple

While I crossed the bridge over the Yamuna River, I noticed these two elephants playing

And this elephant was right on the street on the Main Bazaar of Pahar Ganj, the area I was staying

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