Thursday, December 06, 2007

The 'not so mild' winter - 1

This post should have appeared a week ago but certain situations and perhaps my ennui towards writing kept it away, somewhere in the pages of my mind. With a big meeting getting postponed one more time, I thought of pulling it out and putting it here.

My friend Farhan Shaffie from the ‘Emerald Isle’ was in India for professional reasons and we caught up with each other in the early winters of the Capital. Those who know Delhi would know that early winters here is not as mild as the one I mentioned in my last post.

Between the many business meetings we managed to steal some time, an office vehicle and Narendra, the enthusiastic driver for Farhan’s ‘Dilli Darshan’(which included Tourist shopping). Actually, the prospect of this venture was quite attractive to me too as ‘Dilli’ had become very faint in my memory. Some 10 years ago, I lived in this city for a while.

Narendra had everything fixed in his mind regarding the structure of this trip and interestingly, his structure tallied with the one in my mind. We set out after putting in some good north Indian food inside our system.

Our first stop was at the ‘seat of power’ and ‘shot of history’ with the Rashtrapati Bhavan, India Gate et al. The whole area with its grand and beautiful architectural achievements of Lutyen has the powers to fill everyone with awe and that’s exactly what it did to us. Farhan’s camera was working overtime.

After a few circles around the big circular shopping arcade called the Connaught Place (popularly known as CeePee) we moved on to the famous tourist – shopping lane in the vicinity. It’s called ‘Janpath’ and is famous for fleecing the tourists. Thankfully, Farhan’s focused shopping agenda and my presence (with ‘Hindi’) saved him from getting fleeced. One walk down the lane and he was done with his shopping with an item each for all the important people back home. I picked up a pack of Darjeeling Tea for a Ceylon tea loving Chaga, another friend from the Isle. Farhan readily agreed to be the carrier.

Apples picked up from a roadside fruit-seller satiated our small evening hunger. An early darkness, typical of north Indian winters was descending on the city. Narendra was driving us to our next destination, Dilli Haat. More on that in the next post.

The picture above is of an X-Mas Greeting postcard sent to London from WAC Hostel, New Delhi in 1944.

7 comments:

Bhaskar Khaund said...

dont go and make me nostalgic now - my all time fav. winter city !
enjoyed the post - shall await the next instalment

Naked said...

m - You've now been doubly blessed with good drivers. At some point you can write an unlikely sequel to Taxi Driver - about a calm cabbie who goes around hugging people instead of shooting them.

smiling dolphin said...

what a lovely postcard! am in LA today, Delhi seems so far away. you should get married in the emerald isle, good friends, good setting.

meraj said...

naked, thats a superb idea...in fact, am working on something on those lines.

the smiling onw,
yeah...the postcard is great no? the thought has crossed my mind too...lets see how it goes.

bhaskar,
am glad, you enjoyed the post...haat will be happening soon.

Smiling Dolphin said...

hi, yes am back in amchi mumbai, will put up a new post tomorrow about my american adventure

phish said...

a delhi winter sounds nice. i am on the path to a sabbatical too. need a few thousand days to undo. and i have 4 days alone in the himalayas.

doable.

meraj said...

4 days alone in Himalayas can become 4 lifetimes. enjoy!