Delhi: first thoughts

Landed at Indira Gandhi Airport just after 11pm on Sunday night. By the time we’d negotiated Immigration and Baggage reclaim, it was midnight. But even on a Sunday night/early Monday morning, the area outside the airport was buzzing with activity.

We’re here (a team of 10 from my church in Peckham) to do a bit o work with Asha – a community health project which operates in some of the slums in the city. The driver from Asha was waiting to pick us up, and the drive to the Blue Triangle YWCA on Ashoka Road just about prepared us for the madness that is the India driving experience. Don’t think bumper-to-bumper as much as side mirror to side mirror, nose-on-tail (yes, I know the phrase is nose-to-tail. Well I’m talking closer than that!), and so much continuous beeping of horns, you’d think you were at a Carnival (the “use horn” message plastered on the back of large lorries obviously carries more weight than the “no honking” signs the Government have put up on the roadside).

There’s a nice vibe to the Y where we’re staying. From my room window I can see the Gurdwara situated a few blocks away, which we’re planning to visit at some point. I’m still working out what switch powers what appliance in my room (apart from the telly), and how best to squeeze in time writing and posting stuff on the internet around time I’m meant to spend painting walls and playing with kids. Tough call…

Acha, I have to run off now and have a proper look at Zakhira, the slum we’re working in. Be back when I can…


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