Delhi Adventures One

11 January 2020

Hotel Signature Grand…

The Hotel Signature Grand is an average hotel; 🏨 but, there was a stand-up security at the door. Oddly, no-one actively monitored the metal detector and it was possible to walk around it. The sisters 👧👧🏻 later learned that MANY businesses in India have security mechanism and it is not unusual to have to clear security to enter.

Our first look at India in daylight! 🌞 This is the view from our hotel 🏨 room. Though there is some morning fog we are also seeing smog that hovers in the Delhi air on a regular basis.

We knew cattle lived on the streets, but were not expecting to see a herd living below our hotel room! Every night rubbish is dropped off in the lot next to our hotel and the cows come to feed on it. The sisters 👧👧🏻 looked out to see and enjoy the cows 🐄 each morning from the hotel 🏨 window.


At top of the plate an Egg 🍳 Paratha, this is like India omelet and really good. We ate these for breakfast almost every day

At right we thought it is a DONUT! 🍩 We were wrong, it was not a sweet donut like we have tasted before, it is savory. Staci thinks it might be a Medhu Vada.

At bottom a Poori. There was jelly beside the Poori so we thought we were supposed to put jelly on, Preeti and Aakriti laughed when we told them this! We were suppose to put the Chana Masala or spicy chickpea curry on it!


Biryani is a mixed rice dish that was served with yoghurt. This dish was VERY spicy! 🔥 The dish was served with naan or roti on the side.


The sisters love 💗 Indian Tea! ☕ Water 💧 was difficult; despite the herbs 🌿 we were taking for gut health, we were unable to drink from water pitchers directly because of the risk of getting sick from water that wasn’t boiled.

Delhi belly is a real thing for the weak stomach of the American. It is not unusual for travelers to become sick! 😉 The sisters 👧👧🏻 did their best to NOT have this happen!

NOTE 📝 it is a normal for travelers visiting in ANY country to be concerned about getting sick, for example, Mexico sickness is called "Montezuma's Revenge." 😁

Visiting Qutab Minar…

Qutab Minar was our first monument to visit. We quickly learned that there is a system of not only cost, 💲 but wait lines to enter for “foreign tourist,” “ladies,” and “gents.” Foreigners had to pay more for a 🎫 ticket. The sisters 👧👧🏻 agree with this approach IT SHOULD COST 💰 MORE FOR FOREIGNERS and were happy to pay to see these India treasures!

Qutab Minar is the tallest stone tower in India and was build as a tower of victory. The height is 72.5m (238') 📏 only 1.5m (5') shorter than the Taj Mahal!

Intuitively, we understand that history MUST be protected; however, there is something really special about being able to touch, to feel (figuratively and literally), and in this case walk, 🚶‍♀️ on artifacts that were built hundreds of years ago! It is surreal coming from a system in the USA where history is largely "hands off."

The grounds of the Qutab Minar complex are absolutely beautiful and well manicured. The size of the complex is such that one can get lost, but also the beauty and ease of walking through these grounds will cause one to be lost in deep thought.

Alai Minar was started in 1311 AD but never finished. This tower of victory was started by Delhi Sultan, Alauddin Khilji. Khilji who planned to make the Alai Minar twice the height of the Qutab Minar but died in 1316 AD which caused the project to be abandoned.

A sun clock is located in the lawns of Qutab Minar. According to Sanderson's Sundial - and the 🌞 sun - the sisters 👧👧🏻 visit was around 🕛 noon. The sundial recognizes the work of Gordon Sanderson, an officer with the Archaeological Survey of India.

Smith... in Hindi?!? 🤷‍♀️

Shams ud-Din Iltutmish, Sultan of Delhi, was the first Muslim sovereign to rule from Delhi. The Tomb of Iltutmish is in the Qutab Minar complex.

Shadonna loves 💗 these trees, 🌳 but the sisters 👧👧🏻 never confirmed what kind of tree it is.

Visiting Lotus Temple…

Walking 🚶🏽to the Lotus Temple 🛐from our car 🚗 park. There is a “ladies” line and a “gents” line. We are temporarily separated from Anmol, he has instructed us to wait for him inside the gate, he will find us. The grounds are green and beautifully groomed. 🌹 The Lotus Temple stands tall at the end of a long, brick walk-way. No voices 🤐are allowed inside the temple, no cameras, 📸 only thoughts and prayers. 🙏🏾🙏🏼 🙏🏿All religions are welcomed and respected.

The Lotus Temple a Baha’i House of Worship - India is one of many structures around the world. The Baha’i House of Worship - USA is in Chicago.

The gate of the Lotus Temple is in the shape of a peacock. The Lotus 🌷is the national flower of India. The 🦚 peacock is the national bird of India!

The grounds are beautiful and it is incredibly quiet within the gates even though there are SO many people.

No shoes 👞 👡and no speaking 🤫 are allowed inside the Lotus Temple.

Anmol took our shoes into a shoe check, a wooden marker was issued for pickup of our shoes later

The Lotus Temple has thousands of visitors per day. Though there are a lot of people, they move together harmoniously. 🎶

Visiting Gandhi’s Smitri…

Staci first learned about Gandhi in the 6th grade. Since then, she has appreciated his life’s purpose.

Walking the path of the last steps of Mahatma Gandhi

Driving By India’s Gate…

The sisters did a “drive-by” at the India Gate. India Gate is 42 meters high.

Visiting Red Fort…

The Red Fort is MASSIVE. In-fact it is the largest monument in Delhi.

The walk around the Red Fort is more than 2.5 km (1.75 miles). We only walked partly around it.

Our first day in India was also Staci’s birthday on January 11 which matches up with India's Republic Day celebration.

Visiting Chandi Chowk….

Chandi Chowk is the oldest and one of the busiest markets in Old Delhi

In the middle of the market there was a somewhat open area so we could get a look

Anmol has instructed us to stay very close to him and to protect our bags. He teaches us that pick-pocket danger is here.

As the sisters are walking through the market the ground beneath them changes.

Anmol teaches the sisters they are passing by the entrance to a temple

Crossing the street on foot at Chandi Chowk….

Anmol REALLY takes good care of the sisters!

Anmol always instructs us to stay close to him, the streets are very busy and we are not skilled in staying out of the way.

Anmol is taking us across the street from Chandi Chowk. He instructs us to follow him closely and to watch ourselves.

At about 20 seconds watch the bicycle turn his wheel so we can pass through.

At about 40 seconds watch Anmol hold his hand to signal traffic that we are crossing.

Learning About Life in India…

Walking to the Lotus Temple from our car park.

Anmol is a GREAT driver. To the USA person India traffic might appear disorganized; but, it is not disorganized, it is a different system. Staci called it “the flow.” These drivers understand and use the exact width/length of their cars as they slip in-between and in-front of each other. Indians use every centimeter of the available space! The flow is best described as moving in and out of many cars in such a way that blends with those nearby.

Sign says “Accident Prone Area” - since this was our first ride in Delhi traffic EVERYWHERE felt accident prone. We didn’t see many accidents, and none that were life-threatening. However, during the sisters two weeks in India they were involved 2 small car bumps.

Delhi traffic jam! One guy in a 🛺 rickshaw caused a traffic jam - or lost "the flow." 3 guys got out of their 🚗cars - the sister thought the 3 guys were planning to help restart the flow BUT quickly learned, their intentions were to scold the rickshaw driver! 😁

The truck 🚚 has writing “BLOW HORN” - we were laughing because EVERYONE is blowing horns ALL the time - it is not necessary to ask them to blow the horn! This honking is a language in and of itself.

Beep-beep = I’m here, coming up on your side, so do not move.

BEEEEEEEPPPP = I am NOT stopping! Get out of the way!

The truck 🚚 has writing “BLOW HORN” - we were laughing because EVERYONE is blowing horns ALL the time - it is not necessary to ask them to blow the horn! This honking is a language in and of itself.

Beep-beep = I’m here, coming up on your side, so do not move.

BEEEEEEEPPPP = I am NOT stopping! Get out of the way!

Leaving Old Delhi driving back to our hotel in the evening not much changes with traffic. The traffic continues with consistent flow all day and night.

The city is lit up, with ALL these cars one would think the traffic would not move BUT it is the opposite - in India there is movement AND a lot of horn honking!

Women creating and selling products. These kinds of shoppes decorate the Delhi landscape on most streets!

The sisters saw 🚲bikes, 🐪camels, 👳👨people, 🚚trucks, 🚜tractors, and 🐴horses pulling carts. Indian people really use all the available resources to get work done!

Hungry? No problem! Stop by any street vendor and they'll make a fresh meal in short time. 🕐

The Ganga Garden Shop caused a little laughter from the sisters because - so far - they've not seen anything that their minds think of a requiring gardening. The 🚲 bicycle is hauling what looks to be grass, sod, rolls. Observe that the store sells a "grass machine." The sisters wonder what this grass machine is, guessing what we in the USA call a lawn mower!

The colors are amazing! The vendors cook the foods while the sisters watch!