Delhi, Markets and Temples, India, November 2019
I chose to take a guided tour with “Reality Tour and Travel”. Meet with Stanley at Connaugh Circle for a short subway ride to Chawri Bazar in Old Delhi. Chawri Bazar is divided into several zones where each zone is reserved for a type of market. You have the hardware market (our arrival), spices, fruits, clothes, … From there, a little rickshaw ride to get to the spice market. A modern rickshaw because most are electric, what a relief for the pollution of Delhi. The spice market is also one of dried fruits, a feast for the eyes and for the taste buds. In this magical place, everything is color: from red to orange, through yellow, the eyes do not know where to wander. Our nostrils are exhilarated by all these odors diffused in the streets like a perfume flavoring the succulent Indian dishes. There is so much to see and discover.
After this colorful visit, we leave in rickshaw to another symbolic place of old Delhi: the Red Fort. This Red Fort is huge but this tour only allows to see the outside. Having already visited the Red Fort, I give you some pictures. We cross the road to pass in front of the Jain Temple “Shri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir”.
We are now heading to the bike market. Stanley then leads me to an unexpected place. A dive to the basement of the market. Small tunnels and narrow streets. We are in the paradise of joalliers. Gold is omnipresent and sparkles with a thousand fires. But it is also that of the passemanterie, a universe where my daughter could spend hours there. It is difficult to walk and yet motorcycles try to make their way through as well as pushers.
We finally arrive in the open air to find ourselves in front of a huge Sikh temple: Gurudwara Sis Ganj Sahib. To enter, you must take off your shoes but also cover your head. A few meters further, we arrive at the heart of the office. In this place, it is an explosion of color. Thousands of flowers are woven into gigantic colored stalactites. After a few minutes of reflection, we go to the community kitchens (pangot). In Sikh temples around the world, every day thousands of meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) are served. This place is shared. You come to eat here for free and you also come to give some of your time, for the preparation of meals, for the cleaning of “Thalis” (metal plates with compartments). It’s not cooking for the poor, as one might think. These dining rooms have been designed for sharing where the rich cotoient least rich. In this place, fortune is in his heart and not in his wallet.
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A big thank you to Stanley, my guide, for his eloquence and the information he gave me. It was a real pleasure. A guide I recommend if you come to Delhi. I admit I did not always understand everything from the beginning, but this is due to my poor understanding of English.
Note: Take a look at the pages of the site to discover other photos.