This Is India 2016-Part 1

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India has always been on my list of places to travel to but I never dreamed I would be going there so soon and for the reasons I did.

Last year was bittersweet for me and in a way, a blessing in disguise.  I became single and heartbroken in one realm and an emotional writer in the other.  I discovered when your heart cracks open that’s when the light gets in and compassion can easily flow through your veins and arteries.  I began to blog about my experience and the things I was dealing with in my life.  As it turned out, many others around the world connected with my thoughts and feelings.  My biggest fan base are from beautiful India and so wise in their words, thoughts and feelings.   I felt drawn to them and our hearts instantly connected.

When I felt better I made the decision to give the gift of travel to myself for everything I had been through in 2015 and connect even more with my blogging friends from WordPress in India and in person.  I made a reservation at a spa retreat there and booked the flights to see my friends in January 2016, as a solo traveler.

Welcome to This Is India 2016.

January 1st, 2016 at 3:30 p.m. EST – Canada

My friends Marie-Claude and Sam came to pick me and my 3 suitcases up and drove me to the airport for my 6 p.m. flight from Ottawa to Toronto to Delhi, India.  We had just received 30 cm of snow here and it was cold, -15 C and all I could think about were palm trees!  The flight from Ottawa to Toronto was uneventful and then I had to mentally prepare myself for the 14 hour flight from Toronto to Delhi.  I had many things to help me survive like books, music, in flight movies, my eye mask, and of course the food on the plane which consisted of 3 meals and snacks!

January 2nd, 2016 at 8:55 p.m. Delhi, India GMT

After 11, 965 km, I finally landed in Delhi and I was tired but so excited!  I was hoping my luggage made it which it did.  Wheeww!!!  I had arranged a hotel shuttle service to pick me up and luckily they didn’t forget about me.  I bought an India SIM card for my cell phone at the airport and switched it immediately so I could be on that plan and connect with everyone right away.  I love technology!  After clearing customs and security I went outside and found my driver to the hotel holding a sign with my name on it.  Driving in India is a blog in itself.  Let’s just say I thought New York City cabs were scary, this was something totally different that I will explain as I go along.  Just to give you an idea, there is a middle line down the road but after that, there are no lanes and horns never stop honking.  For some reason though, accidents rarely happen and traffic seems to self-align in every case.  I was amazed to say the least and then I thought hey this is India.  After checking into the Holiday Inn near the airport I went to my room and crashed on the bed.  I was grateful for making it here by myself and navigating to my hotel in one piece.  Then I slept for 10 hours!

January 3rd – 6th – Delhi, India

One thing I noticed since my arrival is that almost everyone working in the hotel is male.  I know this might seem like an odd observation and comment but it’s because in Canada it’s a real mix.  The hostess at the restaurant was the only girl I saw.  Even the housekeeping staff were men!  The second day I was there I heard a doorbell at my hotel room???  Outside my door was a young boy who worked at the hotel asking if I had any laundry to be done.  I was amazed at this adorable gesture and my thoughts again were hey, this is India.

After recovering from jet lag it was time to get outside and explore the city so I took a cab to Connaught Place and met my first blogging friend Piyusha!!  We clicked right away, laughed and talked a lot while drinking coffee in a Starbucks!  Shambhavi met up with us after and all three of us were great friends immediately.  Time to do some shopping!  I have to say Piyusha is definitely the Queen of shopping, especially when it comes to bargaining with the merchants!  She will not accept any bad deal and I was eternally grateful to be shopping with her being a foreigner and all!  I never laughed so much and it was so great to see her in action.  Shambhavi is a very good shopper too and knows a lot about the history of Indian traditions and festivals and I learned so much as we toured around Delhi.  We all piled into an auto-rickshaw and it was time to get some awesome street food at Dilli Haat!  We ate Aloo Ki Tikki, Gol Gappas with aloo channa masala, sweet chutney and spicy water, Chicken Manchurian with noodles.  YUM!  We exchanged cards, gifts, hugs at the end and we felt so good about our meetup.  Just as a side note, everyone calls me Jenny in India…so cute 🙂

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I met another fellow blogger and friend Chandrajit and we had supper while talking about life and blogs.  He is a very caring person who has a big heart reserved for a special person and it’s great to be able to help support him in this.  Many bloggers write about life, love, loss, gain or whatever thoughts cross their mind which is the beauty in blogging.  He remembered my birthday from December and bought me a cake which was really nice of him.

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I had hoped to meet up with Kriti and Darshith in Delhi but the timing didn’t work out unfortunately.  I had plans to meet Darshith next so that was okay after all, not to worry 😉  I wish I could have met you Kriti!!

Delhi was a vibrant city to explore the temperature was around +19 C.  Great for a Canadian girl in January!  Some days it’s hard to see because of the smog and that’s because of the population.  The new driving rule in Delhi is the odd/even schedule so depending on what number your licence plate ends with is the day you are allowed to drive your car.  Again, this is India.

So far so good seeing Delhi these first few days.  I was treated like a celebrity in the hotel restaurant because being a female solo traveler people are chatty and ask a lot of questions.  Some brought me free food and things to try without me even asking for it which was very nice of them.  People in India have the biggest hearts and I love it.  Now I’m off to the Delhi airport again to make my next tour on the East Coast in Bhubaneswar!  The staff at the airport will get to know me well with all my future connections!  Maybe they will be saying “there’s that Canadian girl again..”

Stay tuned and to be continued….

Much Love,

Jenny 😉

 

 

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86 thoughts on “This Is India 2016-Part 1

  1. Wow, Jen! I am so glad that you had a blast in New Delhi! So nice to read your report and to see so many beautiful smiles, from India and from Quebec! Thanks so much for sharing this part of the trip with us. We will stay tuned for the next chapter. All the best, Jenny (;-))! Hugs! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey Jennifer,
    I was expecting this post of yours so badly 😉
    I am so very glad you enjoyed your stay in Delhi. Guess what? I was so sure you’ll write up a bit about the Delhi road rules (odd and even) and horns -“horns never stop” 😀
    I really enjoyed reading your post. Looking forward to read your next part. Thanks for sharing it with us ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you so much Aishwariya your comments mean a lot to me 🙂 That is so funny you were expecting something regarding the driving in Delhi 😀 I swear I could write a blog just on that alone. Going with the flow was so much easier than resisting it and now when I drive here nothing makes me upset anymore 😉 Thank you so much for your constant support, I hope you like part 2 🙂 I should have it out in the next day or two. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great to read you had a good time in Delhi. I too get amazed with the traffic there, and there are no rules that people take seriously. Yes, that is India!

    Glad you met some fellow bloggers and had street food too – golgappas are tikki are my favorite ☺️

    And, yes, mostly men work in hotels…women primarily work as receptionists.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Dear Jennifer,
    it is nice to know that you visited India and my city too, I am expecting that you might have good and nice experiences here., really it is amazing and incredible place on earth.
    If you are planning next time visit to India, please update me in advance so that I also can get the honour to be your host.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hearing it from you and now reading your views make it so beautiful 🙂 I am so glad that you are writing about your travel 🙂 It is so good to read about the things you did and about the people you met 🙂 though I already knew everything 😉 but still it feels great to read you ❤ And don't worry you are already a celebrity 😉 in our hearts ❤
    PS : That odd even rule was trial basis thing only for 15 days 😉 and Indian traffic 😛 no words for that 😉

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Great post, Jennifer 🙂 Really was impressed with the way you enjoyed Delhi, finding the traffic stunts amusing 😀 And of course, the best part, meeting with blogger friends. That is one beautiful trip you had. Stay blessed ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Deepika 🙂 Thank you so much for your great comment. Yes traffic is another blog and I agree that meeting blogger friends in person is just priceless ❤ Stay blessed as well and thank you again

      Like

  7. Haha. Jennn. It was so amazing to read the post. And we travelled by an auto, in metro and then the lonnngg walk. Just remembered. 😀
    Come back. We will go to Varanasi or some place. Or wait I am so wanting to come to Canada, and not just for travelling. 😀
    Also I love that snap of yours. That is your contact picture in my phone. Love, love! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  8. So here comes Jenny with her unforgettable memories of a My INDIA…Hehe (Self praise).
    You met WP friends too! this is lovely. only if I we knew each other better…we could have met too. 😦
    Well there’s always a next time :)…For now…waiting for your next post. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. yeah.dt nice guy named Chandrajit is very honest,sincere n extra inttellecul inteligent n wellmannerd person.plz reminds n care him forever if u can.my all regards to u n ur country for admiring dis India.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I really wanted to take time to check out your experiences about India… your posts did appear regularly but I wisely decided to not right away read it… You are the first person I’ve come across who didn’t complain that Indian street food is spicy!! It’s so amazing you came all along and met some WP friends here… Hats off 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Wow Jennifer.. That’s great that you visited India.. I have visited Delhi thrice, it is an amazing place.. Lot of historic places to look for. And that’s so great of you that you met so many bloggers on the journey..
    And yes, glad to know that you were treated as celebrity in the restaurant.. Have s good time.. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Jackie! It’s so great to have you here, thank you for reading Part One of Six 😉 Yes I had an amazing time in Delhi visiting the sites and my friends. Haha being treated as a celebrity was really fun! You too have a good time today!

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  12. awww Jenny..tahxn for appreciating Indians and I would have been glad if we had met before. I too would have loved to meet you. I am glad that you noticed the working staff in restaurants and I hope you come to Delhi again. Lots of love. May be you spent a little time there in Delhi but you do have a lot of memories to cherish!!! ❤ ^_^

    Liked by 1 person

  13. what a lovely trip you’ve had Jennifer! ‘m quite impressed with your choice to meet fellow bloggers! what better way to experience things when you’re with locals…specially that you’ve been interacting with them for months or years. I read about your experience with a fellow air traveler recommending you to carry pepper spray!! I could only laugh.. He could recommend you all this because he hasn’t been blogging! May be he carried the idea of fake FB profiles onto to blogging platform. In my opinion, most bloggers are quite sincere and honest people. that’s a general statement….though!

    From my experience, In India not many bloggers are interested to meet fellow bloggers. They would generally seek some information about places to stay etc. but are not very keen to meet. Till date I have met 4 bloggers. Two of whom are now my good friends, we meet quite often!

    Good to see Piyusha with you in one of the pictures. I met her here in Jaipur, few months ago! It’s been great reading about your India travel, Jennifer! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hahaha..yeah the pepper spray! I laughed too and I tried to explain that I knew my fellow bloggers because of how they think and write but to an outsider or to someone who hasn’t blogged before it probably sounded like crazy talk! 😛 That’s ok, I had fun anyway. That is so amazing you have met some bloggers too and you also know Piyusha! 😀 She is amazing and so fun to go shopping with!! Thanks to her I got some great deals in Delhi. Wow, what a small world it is out there. Thank you so much Arv for spending your time reading all of my India blogs, I really appreciate it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Loved reading this 🙂 No wonder, traffic got your eye 😀 Lovely observation and such a good read to learn about your first experience, shopping, meeting blogger friends. I can so feel you all excited and what not when you were here 🙂 Keep smiling and traveling fst (fellow solo traveler) 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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