We both have finally decided to leave our jobs and go off in search of that hidden treasure that every person below 30 is searching for, themselves. Most people think you need a map, or something, but really you just need to quit your job and go on a gap year and get dreds, one million piercings and trousers that would usually be used as curtains.
With the intention of eating our way around the world we decided to start by backpacking in India, both somewhere we had never been before, but also somewhere that makes the greatest food stuff after maple syrup (Jim only), curries. If I could only ever eat one food for the rest of my life I think it would be curry.
With a vaguest of routes in our heads, mostly gained through friends and Tv shows on India, we are starting our trip in Delhi, working our way around Rajistan, making sure that we stop off at the camel festival in Pushkar, before heading down through Mumbai, Goa and finally to Kerala. Hoping that the trains would really be as good as everyone had said, we decided there was no need to book in advance, and actually being in India would guide our route.
After an 8 and a half hour plane journey, with an excellent selection on Bollywood films, and the best plane food I have ever eaten (I mean the curry would have put most supermarkets to shame, you even got two tiny little naans), we made it to Delhi and began our bumbling route across India.
We spent the day skipping across the busiest city in the world. Not only had we managed to choose the hottest time of year, but Diwali has also just begun, making a city notorious for its busyness near the point of unbearable. The Red Fort and Ghandi’s tomb were very welcome points of calm, amongst the throb of human, dog, cow, and Tuk Tuk contact, most of which was very unwelcome, especially when not quite accustomed to it being fresh of the plane. We did however, see a load of chipmunks, their contact is always welcome as they are super cute, and according to a well known source they can actually talk.
The Red Fort though seems to be the heart of Delhi, an old Mughal building that is as ostentatious in its size as it is beautiful in how it contrasts to the insane Chandi Chok high street that leads towards it. The huge Red Walls are topped by huge number of birds and other animals that glare down at you as if your head were a delicious worm. However, don’t fear if you wear a hat, they will never suspect there to be juicy flesh ready for the pecking. The wealth of the former leaders is exaggerated in the spiralling designs, coloured inlaid designs and beautiful fountain systems that extends across the vast green and out houses with the walls. The red walls became a delicious shade of ombre as the sun transformed to orange as it began to set through the thick layer of smog that covers the city, turning the sky from a pastel blue to purple.
As we drove around we had the radio’s blaring Hindi music, one song of which caught my ear as an excellent cover of video killed the radio star.
However, enough of the big red house. It was the first day and the most important thing was where the first meal was coming from. Still a little jet lagged we decided that somewhere within walking/ crawling distance of the hostel was in order so we found the best sounding place we could and headed off. In a non-descript open restaurant in the middle of a street that looked as if it had come straight out of the set of blade runner, if blade runner had been set in India, we sat down amongst Indian families and ordered Masala Dosa, Chana Masala, and some Aloo Parathas.
This lived up to the huge hype my stomach had been putting on the food here. The Dosa was as good as any Rosie had ever eaten (I had never eaten one before, but will be sneaking off in secret to munch some more) and the rest made me not want to leave the restaurant. Hopefully, this is the sign of things to come as we continue backpacking in India.
India, keep filling my mouth with things spiced in ways I had never even imagined before, set to a backdrop of temples and unused blade runner scenes.