Following the motorcycle tour, I joined my group again, ready to
return to the children's home on the other side of the city. Jay's
plans included providing a chicken dinner for the children. Shane, a
fellow traveler and carbonated beverage enthusiast, wanted to purchase
soda for the evening feast. We stopped at a market where the employees
were busy decorating for the upcoming Independence Day celebrations.
Shane and I selected a cart full of bottled soda - some familiar, and
some not. The children at the home were glad to see us. I found
myself surrounded by welcoming hugs and hearing, "Welcome, Uncle
Mark!" They really enjoyed posing for my camera, but the highlight of
their day seemed to come when we all admired their photos together.
|From New Delhi|
After the children finished their chicken dinner, we remained until
late in the evening, as they entertained us with their activities.
The next morning, I walked down the stairs to meet Rod and his
maintenance contractor. They would accompany us into Nizamuddin West,
one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city of Delhi. After we had all
gathered, Rod took a few moments to brief us on what to expect in this
inner city area. We would find ourselves in narrow streets teeming
with beggars and pickpockets. He suggested we cover our heads with
scarves and bandannas to show honor to the neighborhood Sufi shrines.
As he told us about this amazing part of the city, I found myself
filled with excitement, ready to enter the waiting taxi and see this
place with my own eyes!
The taxi ride took us past modern corporation headquarters and large
private boarding schools. At last we stopped next to a low lying wall
and stepped out of the taxi. Immediately, a man with a long white
beard approached me with his hand out expecting a rupee. Rod rolled
his eyes and said something to the man in Hindi. The man stepped back
cautiously walked through a gate in the wall.
Continued in Part 10