Day -2: First Impressions

9:30 AM – Delhi! It doesn’t seem to be as cold as we thought it would be. Still waiting for the bus. IITD junta still hasn’t shown up. We’re still at the station absorbing the sights(?) and sounds of the city.

10:00 AM – We’re off at last in one of those green European-style buses. As we cross Janpath, Connaught Place we’re greeted by a lot of familiar names on the gates of mansions by the road.

The old Sheila, Sheila Dixit has a fortress. You can’t see Sharad Pawar’s house from the road. We catch a glimpse of India Gate to the left. It looks awesome! Delhi is a very posh place. Wide roads, flashy cars, huge bungalows. It stinks of money!

11:00 AM – We enter the Delhi campus. Our war-cry of “Mr.Lovalova” pisses off the sentries at the gate. We reach our hostel – Hostel Jwalamukhi. Another long wait while we’re allotted rooms.

11:45 AM – Contrary to the name, it’s freezing in Jwalamukhi! Hot water is also pretty scarce. The rooms are about the size of rooms in H5/6, and there’s Chuna on the wall. After the depressingly awesome rooms in Kanpur, Delhi’s state of affairs makes us feel marginally better about our insti. (There’s more stuff, but more of it in later posts). We keep our stuff, and wander out in search for food. The messing is at Hostel Shivalik. All hostels in Delhi are named after mountain ranges.

12:45 PM – Lunch at the mess. The food is good, but the service is awesome. They have people serving Rotis at every table, and even pouring water for you! Food is served from casseroles, in contrast to the gargantuan steel containers back in IITB.

1:30 PM – A nap in the sun on the lawns of the hostel – one thing you can’t do back home without being burnt to a crisp :-/

4 PM – Practice. ‘Dilli ki sardi’ really knocks you out. 10 minutes of running is like an hour back home.

6 PM – We toast our hands on a chulha fire at a canteen. It’s starting to get really dark already.

7 PM – After a quick bath (with hot water, thankfully) we’re off to see Delhi.

7:30 PM – Is Bombay the only place where Autowalas aren’t looking to rip you off? 25 bucks for a minimum fare ride!

7:45 PM – Delhi Metro. Awesome. Really clean, really shiny and not very crowded. The escalators that take you down to the subway seem to have taken you to a different country. Just makes you wonder what progress the country is capable of making, if only somebody works towards it.

9 PM – Connaught Place. Dayamax – there’s only KFC, McD, Pizza Hut around. We’re in the mood for hardcore north Indian food. A couple of phone calls to friends, and we learn that Gulati’s at Pandara Road is THE place to eat. We get there. There’s a 1 hour waiting. After a lot of discussion we decide to eat at the place next door – “Pindi”. Awesome food, but expensive. Service was bad though. And we missed Gulati. Never mind 🙂

11 PM – We head back. NOW it’s cold. Out come the gloves. Feels like my legs will freeze and fall off in the auto ride to the station.

12:30 AM – Back to the campus. We have soup at FX (more on eateries in the campus next time).

1 AM – Diary entry

1:30 AM – Goodnight!