Saturday, April 4, 2009

Alive in Delhi

After a 48-hour train ride up the subcontinent, we arrived in Delhi Friday to be hosted by Sue and David Hudson (as well as their daughter Mary), who both work for the PC(USA). It's evident they belong in India, because they have Indian hospitality nailed down. And it tastes great!

After seeing India Gate and the seat of government at sunset Friday, we woke up and stormed Delhi with a vengeance Saturday. Last night I walked into the Hudson's apartment and informed them we had "conquered Delhi." Which is quite the overstatement as there is much more to see than the tourist sites we hit: Qutb Minar, Lotus Temple, Humayun's Tomb, Connaught Place, Chandni Chowk, Red Fort, Jama Masjid.

It's a little early for a full-blown "John's Thoughts" post on Delhi, but my first impression is that Delhi is so alive. The last place we visited, Jama Masjid - one of the largest mosques in India, is found in Old Delhi. What was so striking about the mosque was the long walk from the closest street to the bottom of the steps that led up to the mosque itself. So many people were gathered along the way selling, drinking, buying, talking, and throwing rocks at dogs. It was clear that there was such a sense of place for these people; they were so incredibly oriented to the mosque - it bound them together. From the top of the steps, I got the strong sense that I was standing right in the middle of so much. Such a sense of community! I just couldn't get enough. I can't imagine what it would be like if churches created that type of space.

From the top of the steps at Jama Masjid
Tonight we're headed to Agra via train and will return tomorrow evening to Delhi. I'm not sure how much internet access I'll have for the rest of the trip, so don't necessarily expect too much blogging along the way, but I'll do what I can. Here are a few pictures from the last couple days:

Sudie and me in front of India Gate
At Qutb Minar
Qutb Minar
The Lotus Temple
Pulkit - Sudie's best-friend from college - and Sudie
At the Red Fort

1 comment:

  1. so crazy. all of these pictures you have here- we have ones almost just like them!