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    All These Colors Tour: India Part 51

    Saturday, November 3, 2012
    Delhi, India

    Stick Man is all ready to stick it to ya on the bridge over the New Delhi train station, India.

    A well-weathered swami flyer near India Gate in Central Delhi, India.

    On my last sightseeing day in Delhi–and India, for that matter–I decided to head down to India Gate in Central Delhi, mainly because it was only a half mile from a subway station and I didn’t have time to go to any museums, as they would have closed an hour after I arrived. After hopping on the subway at the New Delhi station, I had to change trains at Rajiv Chowk. These transfer stations must be among the worst in the city, as the crowds inside them are dangerously huge. There was a full-on stampede pushing into the car I boarded, even though two guards tried to maintain order just outside the door. One heavyset old lady must have got crushed, because it looked like she was crying, and one man who was trying to help her yelled at some other guys. I got pressed against a railing super hard.

    Throngs of people stroll around India Gate in Central Delhi, India.

    Handmade bracelet sellers at India Gate in Central Delhi, India.

    Watching all of this insanity unfold was kind of disturbing. It makes me wonder why some Indian people can’t be a little more civil in crowded situations. I know everyday life is a constant battle for them, but sometimes they behave like animals–pushing, stampeding, line cutting, shouting, spitting and staring. Luckily, I only had to ride the subway for a couple of stops. After I exited and made it across two standardly scary street crossings, it was smooth sailing down Copernicus Marg, which is situated in a relatively mellow, suburban area of town. The half mile walk down to India Gate was nice and relaxing, as there were only a few other pedestrians out and about. Once I entered the giant hexagon where the monument was located, I had to deflect a bunch of touts selling food, souvenirs and toys.

    The Balloon Demons plan their next attack at India Gate in Central Delhi, India.

    A relatively quiet avenue in a suburban area near India Gate in Central Delhi, India.

    Although a few other foreigners were walking around, the crowd was mostly composed of Indians. I saw a couple of blonde white ladies pose for photos with numerous groups of Indians. On this side of the Earth, us white people look so exotic, you know. I made a field recording of the toy vendors who were walking around playing various little noisemakers with a low-level chatter emanating from the crowd in the background. Three ladies dressed in orange saris kept bugging me to buy some handmade bracelets, but I offered one of them a little bit of money to pose for a photo instead. After that, I headed back up to the subway. The first stop wasn’t too bad, but at Rajiv Chowk, another obnoxious stampede squeezed its way into the last car.

    Overflowing shops are all stacked up in Main Bazaar, Paharganj, Delhi, India.

    Believe it or not, this is a travel agent near Main Bazaar, Paharganj, Delhi, India.

    I was really happy when I finally made it out at the New Delhi station. I don’t ever want to ride a subway in India again. What with all of the long lines, security checks with the wand and an x-ray machine for luggage, the stampedes and dangerously packed cars, it’s really not a pleasant experience. After I ate dinner, I walked down a different street toward the area of the Hotel Krishna, and ended up inside the back lanes. At one point, some locals had a lane blocked off for some kind of shindig, and laughed at me as they made me turn around. I almost got lost inside a maze of really narrow, dark, dirty lanes trying to go around it. Some funny little kids followed me and said hello. When I said hi back, they giggled and ran off. Finally, I gave up trying to find my way around the roadblock and just retraced all of my steps until I made it back to the hotel via another route.

    Roll over photos for captions.
    Words and photos ©2012 Arcane Candy.

    One response to “All These Colors Tour: India Part 51”

    1. bridges says:

      Mr. Davis,

      These experiential accounts and captured moments are so inspiring. I’m finding it difficult to put into words. I think I need to get an RSS reader for AC alone. Especially when you’re voyaging.

      I’ve made it out of the states enough to sync with the beautiful confusion, but feel confident in saying that Merida (while chaotic) probably doesn’t reflect the overload of your most recent excursions.

      I can’t wait to watch your compiled video if the photography is any indication of how intensely condensed the experience was.

      I should note that the Tropical Heat Tour circumnavigated “required” watching with the offspring.. Having grown up listening to the warbled reverberations of Gamelan, it was an enthused experience for both of them.

      Tried the last number I had for you. Send me another.

      Thanks again for the EVERYTHING.

      Welcome here (there) —R

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