Thursday, December 31, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 8

The early morning drive to the school was quick; unlike the day
before. The school officials had recently purchased a two room house,
planning to convert it into classrooms. I indicated that I would be
willing to help prepare the house for this use. On arriving, I was
given a large paintbrush and a five gallon bucket of whitewash. With
the use of a sturdy bamboo ladder, the first layer of whitewash was
applied. The rooms were very hot. My comrades and I took breaks
outside the house to find refuge in the cool shade. Curious
neighbors gathered to admire the clean white walls. One man from the
neighborhood let me ride his bike to the end of the street and back.

From New Delhi

Later in the day, Uncle Jay arrived in the taxi. After he looked
through the freshly whitewashed rooms, our painting crew joined him
for a two hour journey to the children's home where we all played
soccer until it was time to leave for dinner. Jay's friends had
reserved seats for the evening at a very nice restaurant called Hi
Marchee. We stopped at Rod's house to quickly clean up and change into
our nicest clothes and then bundled into the taxi for the ride
downtown. I sat across the table from a young man named Bennett and
his friend. We talked about soccer and their experiences in school.
The drink we were served was new to me. We had a pitcher of club soda,
a vial of lime juice and a small jar of corn syrup which we mixed
together to make a lime drink.

The next day, a visit to the converted school house we had whitewashed
the day before was first on our agenda.
From New Delhi

Jay's friend was excited to
show us the finished product. We were amazed to find the two rooms
packed with students learning to add numbers and recite Hindi poems!

Leaving the school, we ventured a little further outside the permanent
neighborhood to a collection of structures held together by sticks and
discarded sheet metal. Many of the children in this slum were
obviously very malnourished. Jay's friends wanted to show us a
permanent community center they were building. Although the one-room
center was simply four cinder block walls with a tin roof, it stood
out boldly among the surrounding shacks. This center would be well
used in improving the lives of children and adults, and in giving them
a different outlook on life. One of the workers invited me to take a
tour of the neighborhood on the back of his motorcycle.

From New Delhi

Even though
it had begun to rain very hard, I couldn't refuse the offer. Our ride
took us past a large market where every stall was decorated with
colorful ribbons and advertising. Beyond the market was a large
secondary school. At one point, my motorcycle friend stopped and
chatted with some of his friends. By the time we returned to the
office, I was completely soaked, but glad for the opportunity to
experience this unique part of this city.

Continued in Part 9

Saturday, December 26, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 7

The intense mid-afternoon sun was intermittently shielded by tall
apartment buildings as our taxi traveled through this urban canyon
From New Delhi

Our destination was a children's home where more than seventy
children patiently awaited our arrival. The urban area ended abruptly
at a slow moving river, choked with discarded trash. Crossing the
bridge, we encountered a mostly rural landscape with open grain fields
and large
cattle operations. The open country road induced our driver to proceed
at top speed, and we soon arrived at the home. After a quick blast
from the horn, two boys walked up and opened the gate.

We all gathered in a large room with the children, as Vipin welcomed
us. He then signaled seven girls who entered the room wearing white
dresses, dancing and singing their welcome song. In clear English,
we heard the words: "Welcome, dancing,
dancing; We come to sing, sing of joy, and dancing, dance away." As
the song finished, the children presented us with garlands of
marigolds. Once we all had a garland around our necks, a boy began
playing drums. At this sound, six boys came to the
front and energetically danced to the beats. Then it was our turn to
present the children with what we had brought to them. They were
pleased with new soccer balls, basketballs and a badminton set.
But the one item that instigated the most excitement
was a colorful parachute.

On our return trip, I noticed the FIFA or "International
Federation of Association Football" headquarters. After this long day,
the cool air in Rod's guest rooms was most welcome, and we all were
soon sleeping soundly, resting up for the next full day with the

Continued in Part 8

Monday, December 14, 2009

No Comment

No Comment, originally uploaded by Troy Holden.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Btoy @ Galerie Itinérrance

Btoy @ Galerie Itinérrance, originally uploaded by lepublicnme.

Monday, December 07, 2009


rolktunelgood, originally uploaded by Professuh X.


Friday, December 04, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 6

I woke up to the hum of the air conditioner above the window. It
artificially masked the swelling heat outside. Our schedule for the
day first included a visit to a school which is overseen by one of
Jay's friends. Once we veered out from the side streets onto the main
thoroughfare, the traffic immediately overtook us. At one
intersection, we waited nearly a half an hour to proceed. For some,
this situation could be highly annoying, but for me, it was a
welcome gift. Instead of speeding along the "skyways"
like the evening before, I was able to watch the city at a more
convenient pace. I watched as thousands of people went along their
business. Green Tata buses part of the city fleet of over two thousand
packed with commuters slowly made their way up and down the streets.
Travelers on bike rickshaws efficiently made their way through the
tangle of vehicles.

From New Delhi

We passed cinder block sheds filled with loose
garbage attracted cows and wild dogs. The driver decided to veer away
from the secondary roads and take a roundabout way on a main highway.
This road took us past shiny new office buildings and multi story
glass and steel shopping centers.
From New Delhi

I couldn't help but notice the
nearby Pitampura tower, a structure that reminded me of CN Tower in

From New Delhi

We arrived at the school several hours past our appointed time.
The staff didn't seem to care too much. One thing the staff did care
about, was having me give a lesson to a room full of students. This is
something I really wasn't prepared for, but I whipped out the chalk
and started talking about dinosaurs, flowers and pretty much anything
else I could think of. The three and four year old students were not
too impressed despite the teacher's dramatic interpretation of my
knowledge of Benjamin Franklin's proverbs. The teacher soon had to
leave, and a guy named Ajay took over interpretation duty. He also
helped the students with a coloring project.

After school let out for the day, we visited a nearby amusement and
shopping park. Park security frisked all male entrants and stood back
as females entered. Over lunch, I was able to visit with Ahjay. I
noticed he was wearing an MTV shirt. He told me he played in a band
called Wild fire and invited me to come to their next show. After
lunch we strolled around the park. I had the feeling I was at a car
dealership with several new models on display. It seemed like the
worker to visitor ratio was 15:1. Doormen waited to let customers into
the air conditioned shops. At the center of the complex, there was a
large pool with boats on a track circling the perimeter.

From New Delhi

Beyond the
pool, traditional amusement park rides gyrated in the distance. We
couldn't stay long. We were already late for our appointment with
Vipin at the children's home. We found our taxi in the
parking lot and sped away back through the center of the city.

Continued in Part 7