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old delhi………

April 27, 2009

I have heard a lot about Old Delhi – and I finally got to go. It is not the place you want to venture out on your own for your very first visit. I never, ever felt in danger – in fact I got some of the most beautiful smiles I have seen since I have been here – but it is narrow and dusty and fast moving. It is not laid out neatly – you can easily get turned around. So, it’s just better not to go at it alone the first time. It was a super quick trip and I plan to go again – and soon. But for now, here is a little taste of what I saw.



We rode the Delhi metro – it was loverly. Really clean and very easy to navigate. This is the way to go!


There were lots of vendors selling food. It is beautiful but, no, I did not eat any of it.



I loved this water pump – it seemed so out of place and so in place all at the same time. This man is washing off his broom.


You could buy veggies. Very fresh veggies.


And tassles. Yummy tassles.


And you can see people working really hard.


And animals working really hard.


And more wires than you could ever count – in the land of technical assistance call centers – this irony is not lost.


This guy was a great big smile just waiting to happen.


A great big smile.


The streets are narrow and crowded – but it is a fascinating place.


I was offered medical books here. Too bad I don’t need medical books. There was quite a selection.


And you know I loved the kick arse doors in this place. They rock!




This visit was too short. I plan to go back and see the wedding district, the spice market, and the nut market. Plus whatever else the day has to offer.

20 Comments leave one →
  1. Jasmeet permalink
    May 4, 2009 3:30 pm

    Ghung-roos, rather šŸ™‚

  2. Jasmeet permalink
    May 4, 2009 2:46 pm

    They are not bells, they Gongroos! Just that you know! šŸ˜‰

  3. May 4, 2009 2:22 am

    Ashima – welcome – I liked that video a lot – it reminded me of the performance we saw at the Amber Fort – I love the bells on the ankles and wrists of the dancers – it is such a magical sound. And, yes, I agree, it is much better than the bollywood style must of us associate with India. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Ashima permalink
    May 2, 2009 8:29 am

    Hi, I’ve been reading ur blog frequently and its simply great to see u soaking into India so well. Since you’ve got to know more about the place, I wanted to give you a glimpse into our culture and music. Just wanted to share with you this song

    Its from an old hindi film ‘Pakeezah (translated as ‘the pure’) and I find it really beautiful (both the music and the lyrics). For the translation you should check out the comments. I just believe the song brings about a lot of Indian culture and dance-the grace and poise of the dancers. This song is based on the north Indian dance form of Kathak. I guess most of the current lot of Hindi songs are heavily influenced by western music and have been corrupted so heavily that the beauty of indian culture is quite lost. Just write back on how u liked (or did not) like it!


  5. April 30, 2009 9:50 pm

    Caitlin – Naomi and you and I will all go together

    Donna – they are awesome

    Donquixote – welcome – well, I think you have to be open to new experiences and then you have to actually experience it – I don’t know where you are from but Delhi is not at all like the West – you have to look past the haze and dirt and see the people and the culture – it is beautiful

  6. donquixote permalink
    April 30, 2009 9:15 am

    Never been here, but seems pretty much a shabby place to be…..wonder how u ppl find it beautiful and rocking??

  7. April 29, 2009 10:57 pm

    Great photos! I love the doors, too!

  8. Caitlin permalink
    April 29, 2009 10:42 am

    Great photos! I hope we can go exploring together it looks amazing.

  9. April 28, 2009 10:30 pm

    Arun – congrats on getting back to the U.S. – it’s must have been hard to be away from your family. Old Delhi rocks!

    M – thanks for the tip – I want to get some silver jewelry so that would be awesome!

    Jasmeet – thanks I am not exactly sure where I was – we got off the metro and went down an alley – crossed a busy street and went down another alley – then right then left then right – oh yes, we were near the Jain temple.

    Baba – I love those doors

    Lola – I’ll get right on that šŸ˜Ž

  10. April 28, 2009 5:16 pm

    Old Delhi looks like a great place to visit. Can you unhinge those last doors, real stealth-like, and ship them to me? I’d really appreciate it šŸ˜‰

  11. April 28, 2009 12:48 pm

    The doors are beautiful!

  12. Jasmeet permalink
    April 28, 2009 11:23 am

    Nice pictures, seems like sojourn consisted of Parathewali Gali! Which area did you find these magnificent doors at?

  13. April 28, 2009 10:15 am

    If you’re in the market for drapes, Old Delhi is the best place for the material – unbelievably cheap – the same stuff you pay a huge markup for elsewhere. Don’t miss the silver-smiths area next time…you can get jeweelry made for you while you wait (or you could – years ago, it’s been a while since I went to the silver area).


  14. Arun permalink
    April 28, 2009 8:53 am

    areason2write: Oooh … old Delhi!! On this last visit to Delhi (yes, I am *finally* back in the US now :), I fell in love with old Delhi. There is even a recent Hindi movie on it called “Delhi-6“—6 is the pin, aka zip, code for old Delhi, as in 110006. I had been to old Delhi before, but Metro makes it so much more easily reachable that I visited there multiple times. I often tell my friends that in 20 years the neatly laid out apartment blocks will cease to look attractive, but old Delhi with its centuries of history will continue to shine with its character. With all the cleaning up, it’s already a much better place than it used to be 10 years ago. Give it another 10 (or 20) and it will probably become THE place to visit in Delhi!

  15. April 28, 2009 8:37 am

    Deewane – shame on you šŸ˜Ž – if you wait long enough – I’ll know enough to take you for a visit – wouldn’t that be something? oh, and I think the metro does get very crowded – this was at about 11am.

    AlwaysIndian – thank you very much!

    Deep – yes we did – thank you so much for all of your help with that – old delhi is magnificent in its own old delhi way – it is definitely something anyone living/visiting here should see

    Naomi – I am going to take you there my friend. Just you wait and see.

    Badass – yes, it is crowded here – but not everywhere – old delhi is narrow though which makes it feel more crowded – but it’s worth seeing even if it is a little short on space – it is truly a different world.

  16. April 28, 2009 7:23 am

    Is everything always that crowded? I don’t know if I could survive through my claustrophobia.

  17. April 28, 2009 5:40 am

    Love that you’re seeing everything. Not just staying in your ‘bubble’ but really seeing everything. Thanks for taking us along with you on your venture to Old Delhi!!

  18. April 28, 2009 4:20 am

    Told ya!…so did you find any beef? Did you? Did you? Huh? Huh? Huh?

  19. April 28, 2009 2:49 am

    wow nice pictures!
    nice blog too…

  20. deewane permalink
    April 27, 2009 11:35 pm

    O.k. can I just say that I am deeply ashamed that despite spending 22 years in Delhi I haven’t been to old Delhi once!!! That’s like being in CT and never going to NY (I have been to NY :P, I do somethings right!). Another addition to The List for when I come home šŸ™‚ (And OMG is the metro always this empty?? I was told it’s always jam-packed!)

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