Day 4, 5, 6 – Delhi Days: November 3, 4 & 5.
A proper planning for 3 days was done prior visiting Delhi – One day for local Delhi Sight Seeing, one day for Mathura & Agra and the another day for only shopping in the country capital. One our first day in Delhi, we visited Akshardam temple – a wonder piece of architecture and intricate carvings. The place was so neat and so beautiful. Everywhere I turned, I could find sculptures depicting Hindu mythology. After the great chola temples, this is the first temple seeing which I was awe struck and fell short of words to describe the beauty of the construction. We spent nearly 2 hours in slowly viewing each and every pillar of the temple. The ceiling inside the temple had so many layers within telling many stories. The temple was surrounded by huge elephant carvings – a variety of elephants and stories related to them. A lotus garden carving with the fountain was also so elegant in the outside. I could take only a long shot of the temple as photography was prohibited within the temple premises. Coming outside, we took the Metro to Karol Bagh and spent nearly 4 hours shopping on the first day itself. From Karol Bagh, aunt took us to Paalika Bazaar did a good bargain on all the goods we purchased there. Time flies away so fast when we roam in the streets and in that mild chill weather of Delhi, walking on the roads was superb. We did a little circle in the Connaught Place and took an auto back to the hotel for our hot and spicy Tamil food waiting for us.
Day 5: Rather telling me as a devotee to Lord Krishna, I would like to be called as a fan of him. Meeting his birth place was like a dream come true to me. The day 5 of our trip saw us traveling to Mathura which is on the way to Agra. Our Punjabi driver took us in his Indica cab to show Mathura, Vrindavan and Agra. Our first break in the cab journey was Vrindavan where there was a beautiful Krishna temple inside which I can take numerous snaps. Never before and nowhere else I had a chance like this. Beautifully adored and decorated Krishna and Radha gave me many poses for my camera. The black face of his still lingers in front of my eyes. I just loved the idols over there. Next we went to the actual birth place of Krishna. All my life till now, I had enjoyed hearing stories of Krishna, his birth, his pranks and his upbringing. So it was so much thrilling to go see those places in real. The myths and the stories I have heard were built upon these places and I was so lucky to have seen these in my trip. Many would have known that Krishna was born inside a Jail and I saw a baby Krishna idol in a dark cell for which daily pooja was going on. We bought some beautiful souvenirs in the Mathura temple premises. I bought a glowing Krishna baby statue and other pictures of him for all my friends. I finally settled for myself a very very tiny Krishna statue which goes inside my wallet.
Once outside Mathura our excitement started pumping up as we were heading towards the wonder of the world. The white glamour held for us was open to our eyes after a short walk. The place was unusually less crowded to our lady lucks. What do I say seeing the Taj Mahal – an eternal beauty? I am not good in describing such wonders in my blog. We took lots and lots of snaps focusing it from all angles and in a variety of poses. I took a small video covering the walls of Taj and its precious stone carvings. The white marble with rubies and emeralds was so soft and serene. A symbol of love it was for Shah Jahan and the image of it lasted for long time in our minds and souls. We spent a leisurely time of 3 hours in the Taj mahal premises and then headed to Agra fort. We hired a guide who explained us again the history of the fort. We caught a glimpse and a distant view of Taj Mahal from Agra Fort. There were many places inside the Agra Fort I could relate to the scenes in many movies which I had seen, especially Jodha Akbar. The Agra fort could be a little more neat and maintained well being a heritage monument. At the entrance of Agra Fort and Taj Mahal, I bought a few more souvenirs to treasure the memories in tiny things. Our day 5 ended after a non-stop ride from Agra to Delhi thanks to our driver’s driving skills we reached safely and securely to our hotel room.
The next day was the festival of lights and Delhi was lit up with all lamps and people getting ready to invite the goddess Lakshmi to their homes. And we were also getting ready to spend our last day of our vacation as much enthusiastically as we can. We called our relatives and shared our diwali wishes and got ready as early as we can in the morning to do a one –day Delhi Sight seeing. Our first alighting was the President House and the Janpath road. We saw the Parliament houses and the long roads in Delhi which I have seen in TV during the Parades till that day. Next we went to pay our homage to the Amar Jawans in the India gate. A foreign tourist over there wanted to take a snap of 5 of us as we were so colorfully dressed on the day of Diwali.
From India gate, our guide took us to Qutub Minar. We walked inside and recollected our history lessons seeing the Qutub Minar and of course my metallurgical theory at the sight of the Iron Pillar. Compared to the monuments we have seen so far, though these were less rated we did not want to miss them in our tour itinerary. Our next place to visit was Lotus Temple another beautiful architecture – a replica of the Australia’s lotus opera. A small meditation inside gave us some more energy to continue our journey inside Delhi. Our trip was unluckily prior to President Obama’s India visit and because of that Raj Ghat was closed for security reasons. My mother was terribly upset as she was a true Gandhian and she had come all the way to Delhi to visit Raj Ghat. I had promised her to bring her once again back to Delhi to fulfill her wish. Hopefully I should keep my promise. Indira Gandhi’s martyr place was also closed. The driver took us through the roads in which our politicians stay. He dropped us in Red Fort entrance and gave us time all by ourselves to explore Chandni chowk and Red fort. We walked in the crowded streets of Chandni chowk searching for a big bangle market similar to the one showed in the movie of Fanaa. Sad I did not find one such but had a good walking exercise through out. In the evening we entered Red Fort and our trip ended seeing the sound and light show inside Red Fort which was kind of boring and too shivering to sit in the open arena. We returned to our hotel, packed our bags, checked out and reached the Station to catch our return train at correct time. One thing I felt so bad in Delhi was the man pulled richshaws. I wish the next time I visit Delhi there are only Metros and no more human pulled vehicles. I can’t see them pulling us for their living. I am sinned sitting inside the richshaws a couple of times and I don’t know when I will get rid of those sins.
As my aunt and cousin headed towards Tamilnadu, we booked the direct train from Delhi to Chennai. I, Mom and sister got down at Warangal and after waiting for 4 hours for our next train to Hyderabad, we missed the train and it was a tragical and perfect ending for our adventurous trip to travel with all our huge baggage in a bus to MGBS Bus station in Hyderabad. Altogether the trip was a success and we had enjoyed thoroughly hour to hour. Though there were some misunderstandings and difficulties among us it was a pleasure to have a 5 day vacation amidst our busy daily routine. Wish to have many more vacations like this. Finally I completed my first big travelogue and if you are interested I can share personally the 500 snaps which we took to your mail ids. Drop your mail ids in the comments section.