First I will tell about our experiences with travelling in Jaipur. After we dropped Fenna at the trainstation the day before yesterday, a bikerikshaw promised us to deliver us at the Evergreen lodge for 20 rupees. I accepted the offer and got onboard. Halfway the ride suddenly the driver asked us where we had to go in hindi. Finally we noticed that he had no clue of where the Evergreen lodge was, even though at the trainstation he said to us “yes, I can bring you there”. Luckily we were already known in the city a bit and we could tell him where to go. When we finally arrived at the alley that leads to the Evergreen lodge, we told him it was ok to drop us here and even gave him 30 instead of 20 because he had to work hard to get us here. But unbelievable enough, he looks at me and shouts for 10 rupee more!!! I really felt like taking back the extra 10 now, how disgraceful can you be!
Yesterday we were driven around by a tuktuk (or motorrikshaw) the whole day, the same driver picked us up everytime. Ofcourse also here in Jaipur we had to go to “commissionshops” for him several times, declining every “great offer” we got, but we think it saved us some tuktukmoney. Last night we paid the driver 300 Rupees to take us to the Amberfort again (a good deal for him) and even went into a shop for him. Because of that he says he will bring us to the trainstation this morning for free, a nice offer from the guy. This morning however, there is no tuktuk here and we start thinking about last night and what could go wrong. Suddenly I realize we accidentally paid him 50 rupees more than we should have so now it’s clear why he is not here. He rather disappoints us than giving us back that 50 rupee, I think that explains a lot about the mentality of some people here, but maybe I just don’t know how it is to be poor.
By the help of another driver (and ofcourse another 40 rupees) we make it to our train, which departs in time for the first time we are in India, yahoo! The trip is hot, 6 hours (too) long and halfway I get a small maximum-irritation-attack, when we stand still at a station for like 20 minutes. It is very hot outside and if the train holds like this the temperature is tropical inside without the ventilation by wind. Besides there is the constant rehearse of a message on the platform with a very annoying tune and every second there is someone walking through the hallway calling: “Chaaaai! Chaaaaai! Chaaaaai!” (selling tea!). And on top of this all there is the well known, constant smell of sewer, but than worse. Maybe you can imagine how glad I was when the train started moving again.
Arriving in Delhi by train can be disappointing for those who expect to see some well organized urban environment. Litterally untill Delhi Main Station there are piles and piles of dirt and garbage alongside the track. Sometimes you see some dogs, pigs or cows standing on top of it chewing a nice piece of plastic or paper. In other parts there are people living there in many many houses made of the garbage that is the foundation of their home at the same time. Children are playing on the traintrack (their backyard) with kites made of two sticks, a piece of paper and a rope, what a world! I keep feeling kind of strange making pictures from the train of this misery.
By motorrikshaw we arrive at Hare Rama Guesthouse where we drop our stuff in the shoeboxlike room. It is not really stylish here: everything is a bit dirty, the toilet doesn’t flush properly and the room is very small with no outsideworld window, but for only 400 rupees a night (6,40 euro) we can’t complain. In the evening we have dinner at the rooftop restaurant and walk a little bit in the neighbourhood. The hotel is situated on Main Bazaar Road, a very busy street with lots of small shops with every souvenir you can imagine. I guess the woman will like it here…