Let’s Dance, DelhiDelhi, Fall 2012
Somewhere in the back of my mind, I have always known that someday I would take part in an impromptu Indian dance circle. I did not, however, know that it would be on my very first day in New Delhi, in the middle of the street right outside of our hotel, at 8:30 in the morning. Well, cross one more off the bucket list.
As a large group of us left our hotel directly after breakfast this morning, we were greeted by large speakers blaring music of which I can only liken to a sort of Indian house/dub-step genre. It turns out we had stumbled into a large religious festival dedicated to Shiva. Some locals were dancing, one thing led to another, and suddenly we found ourselves in the middle of it all. We flailed our arms and shook our hips as a large crowd, including the entire hotel staff, propagated around us cheering and taking videos with their camera phones.
Everyone warned me about culture shock before I came here, but this is not exactly what I had in mind. There was nothing in the pre-departure reading materials about brushing up on my dance moves. Good thing I’m a sweet dancer anyway.
I have now been in New Delhi for one full day. My initial impression fits the bill that I am, both geographically and culturally, on the complete other side of the world. Driving back from the airport, we zipped through bumper to bumper traffic aggressively jockeying for position with an armed military convoy. Within the first day, I successfully haggled a street-vendor down 100 rupees for a notebook, visited one of the most architecturally stunning temples I have ever seen, and quite literally sweated through my first authentic Indian meal. It was delicious.
I don’t have much more in depth to say at the moment. I am probably still delirious from jet-lag, and definitely still reeling in the bizarreness of it all. As I am writing, the shop sign across the street from my room reads “Good Chicken Cost Less!” but I’m not sure if I should trust it.
Nevertheless, if as they say, first impressions are everything, then I think I will greatly enjoy my stay here in Delhi.
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