After a seven hour flight to London, a four-hour layover at Heathrow, and another nine hours from London to New Delhi, all I wanted was to just teleport to India and get this trip started. Luckily for us (and especially Chris because he’s an Uber addict), Uber is readily available in pretty much every major city in India, so we “ordered” an Uber to pick us up from the airport late tonight to take us to our hotel. As we rushed through security and had our e-visas cleared quickly, I took a deep breath and realized… wow, the New Delhi international airport is redolent of cardamom and rose water. Yep, that’s it. Now, I know for sure that I am truly in India. All these beautiful spices and flowers are going to surround me for the next ten days (as well as the smell of sewage and garbage and fragrances of human and cow and dog and goat pee and poo, but.. we’ll get into that later).
Unfortunately, although English is technically a national language of India… well, guess what: not everyone knows how to speak it. So we experienced massive communication issues trying to tell our driver where exactly we were, and Chris couldn’t understand him, so we waited over an hour for this guy to show up when he ended up cancelling. We eventually did get another Uber who took us on a smooth ride to our hotel… in the midst of an endless sea of “autos” (really, motorized tuk-tuks), scooters, and lanes that have dividing lines but really are not real lanes because no one is following anything, even the double white dividers in the middle of the road. I’ve seen some really orderless traffic in China and in the middle of Vietnam, but New Delhi truly takes the cake for the level of insanity and complete chaos.