Day 18: Delhi and Agra

I have a relatively short blog post today!

Thanks to an upset tummy, I don’t have much to write about other than rolling around in bed and, well…. I’ll leave it at that.

I’m feeling better now.

At the end of my last blog post, we were leaving Chandigarh and heading to Delhi. We arrived in Delhi and checked into The Madpackers Hostel in Delhi’s posh neighborhood, hauz khas.

This neighborhood was very fancy. Its commercial plazas contained high-end western brand names and glitzy hotels. There were Audis and BMWs on almost every street.

It was quite different from the Delhi I had seen during my previous stay in the city.

The Madpackers Hostel was a hip backpackers’ destination in the heart of this neighborhood. We arrived at the hostel’s main lounge to find its guests lying around, chatting, surfing the web, drawing, drinking chai and strumming acoustic guitars.

The guests were almost entirely white people.

The walls in the hallways were covered with hand-drawn art, signatures, and philosophical quotes from past guests. Some of the artwork was pretty incredible.

We dropped off our bags in our 10-bed dorm and went out to grab a bite to eat. After dinner, we picked up a few beers and a bottle of wine. It was Vini’s last night before her return to Canada, so we figured we’d have a bit of fun. It had been a dry trip up until this point.

The liquor store was on wheels. It was madness! People were doing everything short of trampling one another to be served. I managed to make my way to the front counter and order two 4-packs of King Fischer and one bottle of white wine for Avi.

Because our exact liquor store order is relevant information for this blog post.

We got back to the hostel and made our way to the rooftop patio. There was a crew of people having drinks around the table so we joined them.

There were tourists from England, Israel, and New Zealand at the table. We met some colorful characters, one of whom was a journalist from New Zealand who was responsible for writing that viral article about an octopuss escaping from an aquarium. Remember that news story?

Avi nearly asked for her autograph.

We finished up our drinks and went to bed. On the following day, Avi and I stayed in bed until about 4pm due to stomach sickness. Matt and Vini explored the city in the meantime.

We finally mustered the strength to leave the hostel at about 5pm. We did some shopping and I ordered some more Domino’s Pizza. A riveting outing.

We returned to the hostel and said goodbye to Vini, who was flying back to Canada. And now there are three of us.

We took the train from Delhi to Agra early this morning. We booked the air-conditioned, seated car and it was very comfortable. A group of Québecois travellers were seated behind us. Small world.

Now we’re relaxing in our hostel in Agra, a cool spot called the Backpacker Panda. We have our own 3-bed private room which is nice.

We’re about to go grab lunch at what is apparently the cheapest restaurant in all of India. It’s called Joney’s Place. I’ll update you with how cheap it ends up being and how stomach sick I subsequently become.

Tonight we’re going to see the Taj Mahal. And we’ll check it out again in the morning, likely at sunrise.

I’ll include photos of the Taj Mahal in my next blog post. We’ll be leaving Agra and heading to Jaipur tomorrow!

Thanks for stopping by.

Dylan

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