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March 23rd, 2015

A precious hour with His Holiness the Dalai Lama

One of the world’s most special people, HH the Dalai Lama, was in Delhi today and spoke to a huge crowd at the Delhi Gymkhana Club.

Just to get through Delhi’s lunatic traffic to the Gymkhana Club was a mission and a half today, with some of the worst traffic I have ever seen in 9 years of living here, with huge jams in all directions. There was a point when we were ready to give up and turn round, defeated by the thought of driving any more in such miserable traffic. Luckily for us, the traffic was so totally […]

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March 19th, 2015

How to defuse bombs. Indian ishtyle

After outraging in this very same blog yesterday about the ghastly stuff happening in the neighbouring state of Uttar Pradesh, or UP, I bring you yet more news from UP.

This news come from Agra, arguably the most iconic city in India, thanks to the glorious Taj Mahal.

I can do no better than let you read the story (below) for yourselves. Go on, read it and enjoy.

This is a classic.

An absolute cracker, which made me laugh out loud.

India at her maddest best.

Thank God it had a happy ending.

 

The cops had

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March 18th, 2015

Jeez Louise. What’s up, India?

If you have been reading my blog these past few days, you will know that religion is occupying centre stage in India at the moment. And for all the wrong reasons.

Banning beef, razing churches, raping a nun, making a Hindu holy book compulsory reading in school – it seems as though raking up communal feelings is the name of the game, to put it mildly.

As I read my morning paper today, I almost wondered if it were April Fool’s day, such were the odd and nonsensical stories there. I have compiled a round-up of the weirdest stories today, […]

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March 17th, 2015

“We don’t do such things”

Now I am getting angry as well as very confused, at the way this fine country, home to so many lovely people (like my own dear husband) is seemingly spinning out of control, down into the realms of bigotry and retrograde thinking.

If you have been reading my blog these past few days (and if not, why not may I ask?) you will know that there is an apparent explosion of religious intolerance and violence, all played out against the backdrop of the sexual violence that permeates much of society here.

Now you would hope, wouldn’t you, that any right […]

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March 16th, 2015

Oh good God…

I’ve shared with you before the (well-intended) criticism from my family that I am sometimes too negative/harsh/depressing about some of the things that happen here in India – that’s mainly regarding my blog posts about sexual assault, let’s be honest.

I do try not to harp on too much about this ugly underbelly of India – for example, I have stopped cataloging every rape that is reported, virtually every day, in our papers. I had thought that so doing would build up some form of momentum, but I stepped back, on the advice of people I trust.

But then stuff […]

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March 13th, 2015

Let’s hear it for the lovely Lovely Singh

Away from the drama surrounding the rape documentary, (which I plan watching this weekend)…away from my being groped by a lowlife specimen…I give you a feel good story about a seriously gutsy young lady.

At last, a story with a happy ending for a young lady.

This is so brilliant.

Thank God for her cousins (though you have to wonder what on earth the conversation was, right at the moment of the vows.) But well done them.

I’ll leave the story right here, all feel-good-y, without treading into the social minefield of arranged marriages.

Friends,

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March 13th, 2015

Pepper spray? Chilli powder? Personal alarm? Needle? Knife? Taser? Kick? Boxing? Knee in the groin?

I am feeling very overwhelmed and yes, humbled, by the (mostly supportive) outpouring of comments and advice, after my blog post about being groped, when I was out running on Wednesday.

Thank you, thank you to all of you who took the time to write and, especially thank you to the people whom I do not know personally, yet who commented and left advice. It means a lot.

Am less impressed by one moron on Twitter who went on and on about “white saviours” (honestly no idea what he was talking about) and tried to link my being touched up […]

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March 11th, 2015

God help all we women in Delhi. Because no one else will.

IMG_5139

Just what the hell is it with creepy men who think they have the right to touch a woman’s body?

More precisely my body.

I was out running this morning, and, before any of you DARES to suggest it was MY fault because of tight clothing – not that you would, I know, I know. Forgive me, I’m still angry.

So, yes, let me tell you how I was dressed. Never forgetting I am a senior citizen.

Track suit trousers.

Long T shirt that covered my bottom.

Wind-cheater that covered my bottom.

It was about 7.30 am, near Gol Market, […]

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March 10th, 2015

Spring is sprung

It’s supposedly a British trait, to talk about the weather, but the latter is so sensational right now here in Delhi, and it lasts for such a short time, that I shall conform to racial stereotype, if that’s OK with you.

After unseasonal rain that messed up the wedding of young friends of ours, and saw the much awaited Indian Open Polo finals cancelled, we are now enjoying f-a-b-u-l-o-u-s weather.

Chilly mornings and evenings, with a deep blue sky, and all the flowers out in bloom, despite the battering they have had from the rain – Delhi is looking at […]

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March 9th, 2015

Just a bloke hanging out with his elephant

Last summer, driving through the hills in Uttarkhand, we chanced upon this fine couple. Hanging out by the side of the road on a cool day.

As one does.

Every time I look at it, it makes me smile, and so I thought, “Hey, it’s Monday. Back to work day. Why not spread the smile?”

Here’s my photo of the day for you.

March 8th, 2015

Oh India. This time with a (bittersweet) smile

There was a vintage car rally today in Delhi, and although Lemon Drop, Himmat’s beloved MG Midget, could not take part – not old enough, bless her – we went along this afternoon, mainly to support our friends Shoki & Bernard who were driving a rather gorgeous Austin 7.

When you drive an old banger through the streets of Delhi you see a completely different side of the city.

People actually smile.

People wave at you.

People honk out of appreciation, not ill-temper.

This, in a city notorious for its aggression and seriously awful driving, is

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March 7th, 2015

Shrewsbury biscuits. An Indian speciality. Of course.

India_Shrewsbury biscuits_2398

I haven’t lived in my native Britain for many, many years. I left England aeons ago, and though I have obviously visited many times over the decades, it’s been a long time since I properly lived there.

So I actually have no idea whether or not the good burghers of Britain still eat Shrewsbury biscuits or not, but here in India we do. Well, we do just as long as we have a friend or a relative in Pune who can buy them from Kayani Bakery – motto “we have no branches.” Himmat

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