It’s been quiet on my blog for a while. “Yoging”, as Mr Cyriac calls it, has taken up most of my time – but as a result, I am now a certified yoga teacher, as can be evidenced by this photo.
One place that’s certainly not quiet is our house. Noisy at the best of times, it’s positively loud now that Diwali is upon us. Fireworks are going off in every direction (mostly sideways along the ground), and they’re of a particularly ear splitting variety. The kind that makes you lose your bearings for a bit if you’re standing too close. And the smoke they give off blends nicely with the winter “fog” (read: smog) to make blowing your nose at night a real pleasure. As a certified yogi, I suppose now is the time to start using that neti pot.
I don’t know if Diwali is also responsible for our neighborhood sikhs suddenly starting to start chanting down our street with drums and bells at five in the morning. I’ll admit it’s slightly more exciting than the nocturnal dog fights between our guard’s latest ‘acqusitions’, Kalu and Brownie, and anyone who dares step into their street. I still prefer sleep though.
I’m pretty sure the drum-beating monkey keeper who has recently stationed himself on our street corner has nothing to do with Diwali. He’s just annoying all year round and now he happens to be annoying us. His monkeys are pretty cute still.
Diwali is not all bad, of course. It’s a great excuse for putting up our Christmas lights early (I believe here they’re called Diwali lights!), for admiring miles and miles of brilliantly orange marigold garlands down every street, for buying pretty flower petals, and lighting candles all over the house. And eating sweets. Diwali cupcakes? Sure, have two.
So today, on the festival of lights, may the light of love and divinity shine brightly in all of your hearts. And may no firecrackers come flying through your windows. Shanti!
Some of you may see the title of this post and feel a little jilted. New best friends, already? That’s a bit sudden, isn’t it?
You should be jealous, because I bet very few of you have traveled India with a working smart phone recently! Yep, this is a post about how smart phones have changed our lives – and made navigating Delhi, well, not easy, but a little less of a hassle.
Walking to Lajpat Nagar
Not sure if the auto driver is taking you in the right direction? Follow the route on your GPS and keep him on track. Wonder if you can walk to Lajpat Nagar Central Market from Amar Colony? Yes, it will take 17 minutes. Auto fare saved!
Yummy south Indian food
And for the information you can’t live without in Delhi (where to eat clean, tasty food and find a working bathroom), Zomato will come to your rescue. Find the ratings, reviews, and menus of any restaurant in a 2 kilometer radius from your current location. Hurray! This weekend Zomato has led us to some very tasty south Indian thalis and uttapams at Adyar Ananda Bhavan in Green Park , drinks with a view at Out of the Box in Hauz Khas Village, and to a pretty mediocre brunch at the Colony Bistro. Oh well, nobody’s perfect.
Getting stuck in traffic is also a lot easier when our best friends in Italy, Norway, USA, Spain and Lebanon are right there, on our phones, eager to hear about our new Delhi life (pun intended). To smart phones, everyone!
Its Sunday and we’re still apartmentless. A potential candidate popped up on Friday, which we’re considering. An unsuccessful trip to a few new neighborhoods was made on Saturday, but nothing was to our liking. We’re making another trip tomorrow with … Continue reading
One of the first things you have to deal with no matter where you move is getting your phone up and running. iPhones in hand, we set out to take care of that today. It turns out the road side Airtel stalls do not regularly carry micro-SIMs, or any apple related paraphernalia – which we should have known.
The showroom in GK2 did not have them either, but were kind enough to offer to cut regular SIMs for us. Success (we thought)! But alas, we had neither passport copies nor passport photos on us, and were sent away. Shortly thereafter we returned carrying both photocopies and photos acquired down the street. Success, we thought again. Our photos, however, did not meet the strict requirements of the Airtel officials. “This is paper photo, sir, not thick enough”. I admit, they were flimsy looking, but we figured anything goes in India. Nope. We were sent away again.
The third time we returned with our faces printed on thick, glossy paper and we were allowed to proceed with the necessary paperwork. After a relatively painless hour of form filling and phone activating, we had our SIMs and much-sought-after data plans in hand. A great success indeed!
In ‘other business’, the house hunting has commenced. A grand total of 11 apartments were visited today – some good, some bad – and another lot await us tomorrow. We’re growing confident that we can get something we like within our budget, which we may have underestimated in general. More on that in a different post. Minor success.
To round off this fairly successful fourth day in Delhi, we dined at Udupi, a past favorite. The thalis were just as tasty as before – and I’m still not capable of finishing them. That is probably good news for my waistline.