Lessons Learned

We’ve returned from Delhi safe and sound, with a few lessons learned:

  • Just because you use a rickshaw driver all day doesn’t mean he won’t try to jerk you around at the end of it. We asked to go to Dilli Haat — he ended up bringing us to the Delhi Haat craft bazaar. We were very clear where we wanted to go (“Dilli Haat, by INA Market”)- but he brought us elsewhere (“Dilli Haat charges, only has Chinese food and poor goods.” … Uh, no. Clearly we know the last time you were there – a long, long time before, if ever!). It was not where we wanted to go, we had no interest in going in – and didn’t.
  • The Canadian High Commission for Delhi should be contacted by phone for all matters whenever possible. Their form said you could pay by credit card “where accepted” – and since you have to send it to the High Commission, it would make sense to accept plastic otherwise not to mention it. They additionally do not list their actual visiting hours on the website. If you need to do any face-to-face meetings with the consulate representatives, you must plan for your meeting to be between 8:45-11:30am. It turns out we needed a bank demand draft (money order) and new photos for Adam – his were “overexposed” – so we were allowed to return after 1:30 and their lunch break was over to complete his application process. Had we been in Delhi on Wednesday, they would have not granted us the permission to come back after lunch!
  • After you’ve hit the couple of decent restaurants in Pahar Ganj enough to have the menu memorized, everywhere else is expensive and a fair trip away.
  • When there is a gazetted national holiday (shops & offices closed), they really mean closed. Even most of Pahar Ganj’s touristy stuff was closed all day and only opened briefly in the evenings.

Still – not a bad trip, all in all… but disappointing in a handful of ways. We’re going to stretch our wings a little and consider joining the Hostel International group, which has youth hostels affiliated globally – including one out in Chanyakpuri, which is far away (we’d have to get a tuktuk or a cab from the train station, since I think the metro has stopped running by our arrival time), but may be more worth our while… we’re looking into it.

2 Comments on “Lessons Learned

  1. oh my, we got the Dilli Haat, Delhi Haat runaround too! No amount of “next to INA” would convince them we wanted to go to the authentic one. Finally we took the subway. Did you try the subway at all? That was pretty awseome.

    • We love the subway – we’d just hoped, since we’d had to use the rickshaw all day for the passport back-and-forth, that he’d take us down and it would be easier than the hike out to the Metro from the Canadian embassy neck of the woods. I did have a brief panic when I couldn’t find my token one day, though – the *one* day I’d worn jeans instead of salwar, and it got deeper into my pockets than I could find at first!

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