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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Delhi, India

Jan 31, 2016 - Act 3 begins with Jim's Big Mistake

Our original plan had been to fly from Delhi to Melbourne, Australia, stay three days in transit, then move on to New Zealand. Jim's online research done back in November had indicated we could do that without a visa. His official visa search engine queries had come back "no visa meets your request." He therefore thought we could be granted transit status in passport control in Melbourne. At the Air India check in counter, we were told we had been listed as do not board. We did not have a transit visa or transit number. Australia needed a...

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Jan 19, 2016 - 18 million people + 2

Delhi. It's fascinating and awful at the same time, and for the same reasons. India's capital has about 18 million residents.. 18.. million.. people. All doing something. All going somewhere. All at the same time. All the time. We're not in Merritt anymore, folks. It's truly an amazing thing to be a part of, but it gets overwhelming pretty quick. The best way to experience the utter chaos of this city is definitely by rickshaw. It's an exhilarating experience to say the least. Somehow, these rickshaw drivers manage to expertly navigate...

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Jan 15, 2016 - Act Two, Scene Two

We returned to Delhi via overnight train. It was the best train yet. We did a bit of shopping, but mostly we rested. We now fly to Trivandum at the southern tip of India, from where we will have fifteen days to Goa and the end of our tour. We expect a bit more greenery, beaches, and vegetarian fare. At some point, we changed. Delhi seems orderly compared to Varanasi or Agra. Our intimidation by crowds, touts, traffic, etc, had subsided. Our Intrepid tour leader, Nil, will be a hard act to follow. Jim is on his forth Intrepid trip, and Nil...

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Dec 27, 2015 - Flight to Delhi via Abu Dhabi

12/27 Mari arrived to stay in our room the night before...the original room would have needed a roll away bed but David who checked us in was feeling very generous so he gave us a suite! Really a nice fellow cause he threw in free wifi as well. So we spent the eve and morning watching TV (we had 2 in our room!). Check out was noon which is exactly when we left, caught the shuttle to the airport, and checked our bags before settling in for what turned out to be a 3 hour wait since the plane left an hour late. The seats were quite cramped for...

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Dec 24, 2015 - Act Two: curtain up

Credit Air India for retaining the classy touches of international flight. Fish or chicken for dinner. In flight movies of your choice, and recent ones at that. Continental breakfast an hour before landing. Too bad the flight staff was a bit grumpy, but who can blame them? Seven hours is a long time to be trapped in a tin can with a couple hundred whiny passengers. I could not do that for a living. After arrival at Delhi International, we walked one of the longest passages in memory between the plane and passport control. We had two layers...

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Dec 2, 2015 - Thailand

Hi all. Sorry for neglecting you, but I ran out of oomph to write any more journal entries until now. We are finishing our last day in Thailand and we leave in 24 hours. We spent two nights here last week when we arrived at the Shanghai Mansion, in the large Chinatown area of Bangkok, and had a magical Thai massage the first night, right after heading out into the melee on the streets for prawns and Thai food that was so deliciously fresh and scarily prepared in who knows what kind of sanitary conditions. The hotel was a gem. A boutique...

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2015 Trip to India

Nov 24, 2015 - Last night in India

We eventually reached the Hilton hotel after about 2 more hours due to the incredible rush hour experience of Delhi's smoggy 12 lanes-in-each-direction gridlock wonder. Apparently we were each supposed to have a room for 4 to 5 hours in order to freshen up and rest before most of the group was to head to the airport at 10:30 pm for a 1:30 am flight to Beijing. Brian and I had booked a $31.00 room as I mentioned earlier, but it was back the way we had just come so we knew it would be another 2 hours in a cab to get there. Meanwhile we were...

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2015 Trip to India

Nov 23, 2015 - Agra to Delhi

The photo of the marble side table that I posted yesterday is an example of what the Taj Mahal is made of, and how the same process was used on both. Hand crafted Rajasthani marble, we were told, is the hardest marble in the world, as the molecules are so tightly bound together. Who knows if this is accurate, but the manufacturer did give us an example of how It does not break, crack, stain, nor can it be scratched or cut by sharp objects. He also poured Pepsi on it and left it to show it was impervious. The design is made of semi precious...

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2015 Trip to India

Nov 21, 2015 - On the road to Agra

We rise at 6 am to ready ourselves for a 12 hour bus trip with some stops. There are many forms of transportation as we head out of the Ranthambore National Park area en route to Agra. We pass scooters with 3 and 4 people astride, bullock carts which always remind me of bible stories, gaily decorated tractors hauling sand for road construction, a van filled with cauliflower, auto rickshaws, bicycle rickshaws, bicycles with three people aboard, donkey carts, wedding carts, huge trucks loaded with supplies for city folk, jeeps, tourist buses...

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Nov 20, 2015 - Tiger

Huge success!! After about 3 hours of patiently waiting and watching many other birds and animals, we saw our tiger. She is 21 months old and the only female in the litter of three, from Krishnaa, a female made famous by a National Geographic film called Tiger's Revenge. She is in Krishnaa's litter of 15th to 18th kits. We were assigned to section 4 of the Ranthambhore National Park, a random computerized system of assigning tourist groups to specific areas to reduce impact on the 55 tigers within the park. She is still mainly with her...

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2015 Trip to India

Nov 20, 2015 - Photos

We have great tiger photos but they're on Brian's camera and my cell phone, so I can't post them here. I also have great video here on the iPad but the wifi is too sketchy to upload. If you are trying to reach me via phone it won't work, because WhatsApp is trying without success to reinstall itself, but keeps getting booted off, and Vodafone has taken over my roaming service off of Aircell, and won't allow calls or outgoing text messages. Such is the cyber scene, except for those who pay big bucks on plans and have access through roaming...

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Nov 19, 2015 - En Route

En route from Pushkar to Ranthampore (to hopefully see tigers) we see great stooks of millet piled all over the countryside, recently harvested. The fields are being prepared for mustard. The greens are steemed like spinach in winter. The sed is used for cooking. Or more importantly, to be pressed for mustard oil which is used up north for cooking, the same way coconut oil is used down south. Grasses, tall, similar to what we know as pampas grass is grown for thatching the roofs of Adobe huts to live in during the summer months as they are...

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2015 Trip to India

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