Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A Little Bit of This, a Little Bit of That.

The Lotus Temple.

We ended our first day of sightseeing Delhi with no sightseeing.  It did start with lunch though.  Our guide wanted to know what kind of food we wanted to eat and of course, we told him Indian.

He ended up taking us to a place called The Flying Saucer which is located very nearby Humayun's Tomb.

Based on the name alone, I had no idea what kind of food we were getting for lunch but he confirmed we could get Indian food here.

We entered inside a VERY modern looking restaurant and based on the relatively young clientele seated at the tables, this was a fairly upscale restaurant by Indian standards.  The music was Western pop.

We got seated at a banquette and handed some menus.  There weren't that many food options so I think this place is really more of a bar that serves food than a restaurant that also serves drinks if you know what I mean.  Half the menu was alcoholic drinks.  A good number of food offerings were snack items and then there were just a few Indian inspired main dishes that covered the gamut of foods loved around the world - pizza, pasta,burgers, etc.  There were barely a handful of *classic* Indian dishes so not much of a choice.  Neither one of my travel partners was hungry.  Chantale eats like a hummingbird so I wasn't surprised she was not keen on lunch but Ayşe is typically a very big eater and the fact that she was not hungry was probably a reflection of the fact that she's still adjusting to jetlag.  For the three of us, we literally ordered some rice and butter chicken.  We're going to be famished by dinner time.

We had about an hour for lunch and that's all we needed given the doll sized meal we had ordered.

From the restaurant, we headed to the Lotus Temple.  Our driver dropped us off in the parking lot and we peered over the other side of a wired fence, topped with barbed wire, to look at the building....which does look like a partially opened lotus flower.  I think it's a beautiful piece of architecture.

Our guide pointed out the VERY long line of people who were queued up to go inside and asked if we wanted to go.  Since I had been here before and did go inside, I was able to tell the girls there wasn't a whole lot to see in interior - pretty much just an empty room with pews.  I was willing to stand in the line if they were interested but neither was.  I think we had had enough sightseeing for the day.  So we snapped a few photos (I had to hold the camera above my head to get the shot) and headed back to the van.

Next, it was off to the obligatory shop visit.  I hate these stops but when I'm traveling with others, I suck it up and go along.  This one purported to sell products made by Ladakhi women with proceeds going back to them.  Sure.  The skeptic in me always wonders if they say these things to lure tourists into their shop.  Personally, I prefer to buy from the villagers, in the village itself.  That way, I am sure that the money goes back to them.  Here. the middleman definitely gets a cut considering how nice this shop was.

Ayşe and Chantale did their bit to help the Indian economy.  I waited for them outside and then Chantale joined me.  I just so happened to have my camera turned on when a bird decided to *bless* Chantale.  As you can see from the photos, she was none too happy but I thought her over reaction was hilarious.  Based on her facial expressions, you would've thought she was dying!  To me and the few shop workers who were sitting nearby, it was a hilarious incident.  It was just a bit of poop and as we all know, it's good luck when a bird drops some on you.  She was okay after I handed her a couple of Handiwipes.

After our shopping moment, we headed back to our apartment.  The driver dropped us of outside PVR Rivoli.  With agreement from the gals, I gave our guide a small tip and our thanks for taking us around.  I also gave the driver a small tip.

Fast forward to dinner.  Pind Balluchi.  Chantale and I enjoyed our meal last night so much we decided we had to introduce Ayşe to the restaurant.  We ordered up EXACTLY the same meal as yesterday except today I had pista kulfi for dessert.....my favorite Indian dessert.  At Pind, it comes on a very long stick - looks a bit phallic but it was delicious - perfect way to end my meal.

Everyone, but me, seems to exhausted from the day.  Ayşe is still grappling with jetlag - she's been a real trooper so far.  Poor Chantale has not gotten a full night's rest since she's been here - still dealing with issues with her father and daughter.  Hopefully, tonight will bring good sleep to them.

Tomorrow, we are heading to see my favorite landmark in Delhi - Qutub Minar and I am looking forward to introducing the girls to it.

Goodnight from Delhi!