25th of December, 2004 - 6:31
Meeting Govardhan
24th of December, 2004 - 16:27
Festival of Sri Kunjabihari Das Babaji Maharaja
23rd of December, 2004 - 17:36
22nd of December, 2004 - 20:08
A foggy day at Yamuna
21st of December, 2004 - 20:21
The garden of rasa
20th of December, 2004 - 17:25
Siddha Madhusudan Das Baba's festival at Surya-kunda
19th of December, 2004 - 18:38
The lake of Sri Chaitanya
18th of December, 2004 - 18:44
In Vrindavan
17th of December, 2004 - 16:58
At Radha-Roman's house
16th of December, 2004 - 16:09
Today Delhi going
15th of December, 2004 - 17:30
Inquiries on bhajana
14th of December, 2004 - 20:01
A crash and Radha-Krishna katha
13th of December, 2004 - 18:14
A fairly uneventful day
12th of December, 2004 - 19:31
Publicity in the whole universe
11th of December, 2004 - 18:05
On bad deeds and good character
10th of December, 2004 - 16:50
Disappearances and instructions
9th of December, 2004 - 16:59
8th of December, 2004 - 17:49
Festival of Narahari Sarakara
7th of December, 2004 - 17:54
Back to Radha-kunda
6th of December, 2004 - 21:42
Visiting Vrindavan
6th of December, 2004 - 15:49
Half-way around Govardhan
5th of December, 2004 - 16:09
Electric outage
5th of December, 2004 - 15:04
Vrindavan Art
4th of December, 2004 - 17:17
Thoughts on our bhajana-marga
3rd of December, 2004 - 17:32
Meeting friends all day long
2nd of December, 2004 - 23:51
The second day in Vraja
2nd of December, 2004 - 17:39
Meeting Baba
2nd of December, 2004 - 0:20
From New Delhi to Vraja
1st of December, 2004 - 19:33
Giridhari's flute busted!
1st of December, 2004 - 7:30

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Today Delhi going
Posted: 15th of December, 2004 - 17:30

Three cute puppies at the gate of Gaura Dham in the morning.
Early in the morning, we left for Delhi with Yugal Kishor and Braja Kishori. Though the car was fast, the trip seemed incredibly long. We left a bit late, and on the way the driver stopped for a lunch in the mid-way place where everybody always stops. He was quite fast, though, as we got off in just 20 minutes. The previous driver certainly took his time, as he was at it for three quarters of an hour or so.

Approaching Delhi, we stop at Haldiram's for some dahi and salad. Both Malati and Braja Kishori were feeling a bit weird in the stomach, so dahi was the preparation of choice. Good, but awfully sweet this time. India is notorious for excessive use of sugar. Even the soft drinks, though otherwise same as in the West, seem to have twice as much sugar in them. The guy at the counter seems to have a hard time hearing "eight dahi", even in Hindi.
I don't suppose normal people make such orders there. On the yard, they have a beautiful English garden with champaka-trees and some other trees we can't recognize.

Quoting from Malati's notes: "Delhi was horrible. Lots of noise and pollution. We are running all over the place." That's about the gist of it. First we head for Nehru place, the IT center of Delhi with a good selection of shops. Yugal seems to know his way around well enough. We drop the ladies off at the comfortable chairs of the air-conditioned IBM office while we take care of some business. "Ten minutes." We pick up a hard drive from Anil Taneja "Computer World Systems", which is a one-man shop with a big name and quality service.

A cow couple staring at us at Nehru place.
They don't have the hard drives I need in stock, so a fellow there runs out to get it, and it's "just now coming." In the meantime, Yugal goes around and takes care of some things, having the laptop of one devotee repaired, looking for a new one for another, and so forth.

After about an hour beyond the ten minutes, the ladies make their exit from the IBM office, having been given a bunch of brochures and a presentation on IBM ThinkPads. It became too embarassing, we hear. I find them on the way nowhere, pacing around back and forth somewhere outside the store, enjoying the atmosphere. Braja Kishori has a bunch pictures that need to be printed out, so they go to a xerox shop to get the photos printed out in various sizes, also getting them framed in another place nearby.

Mein Kampf in Delhi. Descriptive.
In the meantime, we wander around and familiarize ourselves with the place. Not much of interest there, though we find a useful shop with some foodstuffs we couldn't find in Vrindavan. The end of the street is filled with book sellers sitting on the street with an extremely mixed selection of titles scattered around. Among the more interesting titles, we find the Holy Bible and Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf sitting in the stack. I spot a man carrying eight full-size computer cases stacked up on top his head. That's one of the more interesting sights of the day. There isn't much of particular interest here, this is a place where you get things done and get out as fast as you can.

A view of Nehru Place.
We also visit Connaught place to take care of some things, then heading for South Ex, where there are supposedly good stores you can buy food from, especially natural products and the such, for Malati. The shop we came for in particular, however, no longer exists, and we are left to find something else. In the end, we do find a shop with something useful there, but nothing of the sort we would have actually wanted. At least they have shelves and we can look around instead of having a man stacking up half of his merchandise on the counter for you, as is often the case in Vrindavan. South Ex is completely Westernized in style, looking very similar to any shopping area you might come across in any big city. A culture shock of sorts to us. There is an incredible quantity of shoe stores, but all in all very little of interest to us. The only very useful store is next to the parking lot, a good selection of flowers. We buy a bunch of roses for Thakurji, as quality flowers are hard to come by at Radha-kunda now that the cold season is approaching.

Stuck in Delhi traffic.
On our way back and forth, we are frequently stuck in traffic jams. Delhi traffic isn't particularly enjoyable. Without air conditioning, you won't be feeling too well in the end. With bus, Yugal says, Delhi trips make him feel sick for a couple of days. The pollution is just incredible. We still return once to Nehru place to pick up something that wasn't available and that was "just now coming", and then head towards Radha-kunda. It's already getting late. A stop at the mid-way stop for the driver's late dinner is of course an unavoidable event. He has to eat something, too.

To make up for the delays, he feels he needs to drive 100 km/h on the highway. That's still fine, but the going gets concerning when we come to the small and bumpy (and I mean bumpy with a capital B) roads leading to Govardhan and Radha-kunda.

The Gate of India. Not quite sure what it's there for, but at least we can now say we've seen it.
The roads aren't concerning in themselves, if you don't drive an average of 80 km/h there. Our driver, however, seems to be in a rush, and peaks at 90 km/h at times.

Most of us are dozing off as the midnight is approaching. We wake up, passengers and bags flying about half a meter in the air, as we hit a big bump on the road. Both the car and the passengers seem to be just fine, though a bit startled, and the journey home continues — with the same speed. I am sceptical whether these cars have ever had any sort of shock eliminators. Even if that's the case, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't survive a day with this style of driving. Anyhow, we make it home in one piece, well and alive though tired. This isn't something you want to do unless you really absolutely need to. Sometimes the practicalities of life just force theirselves into your peaceful life in Vraja and demand that you take care of them.
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