December 7th, 2018

There are times when I despair of Delhi

Yeah, I know, I know.

I sometimes give Delhi a hard time.

Well, quite frankly, and at the risk of upsetting anybody yadda yadda yadda, quite often this city is not a particularly likeable place.

Anyone who follows this blog will have read, over the months and years, endless tales of sexual violence of the worst kind, as well as endless tales of pollution of the worst kind.

Now I give you crass, stupid, dangerous vandalism.

Last month, a bridge was inaugurated in east Delhi.

Conceptualised in 1998, started in 2004, it was finally opened (though it is still not […]

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November 23rd, 2018

Dying in the so-called name of God

Right, cards on table time.

I am a Christian. But I have no truck whatsoever with missionaries who seek to convert.

Equally, let me hasten to add, I take great exception to people not being allowed to convert if they so wish – which is a perennial issue here in India.

My view is that the decision to practise one’s religion or not, to convert to another faith or not, is a private one, and that outside bodies have absolutely no right to interfere.

So, having said that, let me share with you a tale of crass stupidity and ignorance […]

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November 22nd, 2018

Sadness, rudeness & a little piece of history

This has been a tough week for my husband and his family.

In the space of 3 days, 2 members of Himmat’s family died – a first cousin and an aunt.

Both memorial services (the “bhog”) were held, with just a day between them, at the Gurdwara Damdama Sahib, a Sikh temple near Humayun’s Tomb.

Not only had I never been to this gurdwara, I’d never even heard of it before, which is surprising, since it has quite some history attached to it

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November 21st, 2018

The worst-protest-ever that became the best-protest-ever!

I have never lied to you, have I?

All these years, I have always faithfully told you the truth about India, varnished or unvarnished.

So trust me, friends, when I tell you that this article is SO totally worth reading, right to the end 🙂

This is India at its daftest &, paradoxically, at its wisest.

Quick bit of background info, before you start reading. Babur, about whom the protesters were up in arms, was the founder of the Mughal dynasty and died in 1530.

Yes, you read that correctly. 1530.

Anyway, read on and enjoy!

[…]

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November 6th, 2018

Every dog has his day

And for our dogs, Tommy & Yoko, today was the day.

Along with thousands of dogs in Nepal, our dogs are honoured today on the occasion of “Kukur Puja.”

Such a lovely festival.

I found a very informative blog about this festival, and the contrast between the Indian and Nepali way of celebrating Diwali is quite stark – though in India’s defence, the ban on firecrackers this year has (thus far) reduced the noise levels, and the pain and fear inflicted on animals, street dogs in particular.

Nar Bahadur was sitting petting Yoko yesterday, muttering about how the dogs hate […]

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November 5th, 2018

Delhi’s toxic mess is getting worse

I am not asthmatic.

I have no allergies.

(For the record, as a child, I used to say I was allergic to cream doughnuts, but that was because of a particularly disastrous road trip…I’ll spare you the details…)

So, no, I’m not allergic. I’m not asthmatic.

For my age I’m reasonably fit.

Exercise.

Need to lose 2/3 kg, but don’t we all?

Don’t smoke.

So why am I wheezing and coughing and spluttering?

Why are my eyes stinging?

Why do I feel borderline breathless?

THIS IS WHY.

THIS!

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November 2nd, 2018

Seeing Delhi differently

Today began in the pre-dawn darkness, as I headed off through the streets of Delhi, to meet up with one of my running friends, Sunil Punshi, who was taking me to Yamuna Ghat.

I was last there in probably 2008 or 2009 (pre-Commonwealth Games, that’s for sure) and was keen to see the river again, and at dawn, inspired by the fabulous photos Sunil shares on his Instagram feed (if you don’t already follow him, you should!)

[…]

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November 2nd, 2018

This is THE best thing you’ll read today

Trust me. You will not find a lovelier, more uplifting story than this one.

There is just so much to love in this story, isn’t there?

I honestly can’t decide which is my favourite bit.

The fact that this fabulous 96 year old is planning to study till her 10th grade exams…or that she now wants to learn computers…how awesome is she?!

I love the fact that she can now read story books without nagging her great

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October 31st, 2018

Delhi’s toxic mess

I am currently in a state of deep despair about my adoptive home, India, and more especially about Delhi, where we live.

There are so many things happening right now in this country and in this city, and none of them seems good, to be honest.

Of course there’s lots of amazing stuff happening, of course there is. But the overall impression that we the common people are left with, is of a government so totally focused on pushing its “Hindu” agenda in the run up to next year’s elections, that nothing else really counts.

As I sit in my […]

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October 20th, 2018

The answer to today’s Delhi popquiz is…

For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I’ve started answering my popquiz question here.

Clever strategy, right, to get people to check the blog!

So, to remind you of today’s popquiz, asking you where this statue is:

The answer is the Jaipur Polo Ground.

He’s pretty impressive, right?

October 18th, 2018

It’s all happening. If only I knew where!

I live in a very weird house.

Not only do we have no mobile connectivity, as in NO mobile connectivity, the walls also seem to bounce sound off in totally random directions.

Sitting just now in my study, which gives onto the drive and the garage at the back of the property, I could’ve sworn that the bells and music and general “tamasha” was coming from right outside my window.

Go into hubby’s study next door, which faces a different direction, over the neighbour’ s back garden, and quite clearly the tamasha was coming from there.

Except that the action […]

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October 16th, 2018

So, how well do you know your Delhi statues?

In a city with quite a few impressive statues of heroic people and freedom fighters, I came across this very, very small but very jolly statue in a teeny little park on Tikendrajit Marg, in Chanakyapuri.

It was on Sunday, when I went for a solo run, and decided to explore streets I’d never visited before.

After all the hours I’ve trotted round this part of Delhi, it’s nice to discover new avenues.

Literally and metaphorically.

I already shared with you my major discovery on Tikendrajit Marg, in a blog post the other day – the memorial to the man […]

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