India Trip - Day Two - Abu Dhabi & Delhi
January 18, 2008
Upon arrival at Abu Dhabi I enter the main lounge, it has coloured tiles all over the walls and ceilings that make it reminiscent of the interior of a mosque.
When it is time to depart I go to the gate and catch the bus to the plane, we travel all the way to the other side of the airport but the driver does not know which plane it is so we go back to the gate and wait for about 20 minutes in the bus.
When we eventually board my seat is 33k, after about 5 minutes someone comes over, looks at me, looks at his ticket and the seat number then runs off to find an air steward who then asks to see my ticket, the airline had issued a ticket for seat 33k twice as we were both entitled to the seat they found a spare empty seat for the man.
It was a short trip to Delhi, only approximately 2 1/2 hours. Upon arrival even when we were still on the runway people started to get up and collect their bags and belongings despite repeated requests from the cabin crew to remain seated, this is one of my pet hates, why can’t people simply wait that extra minute until we stop, it is not as though they are going to get off any sooner.
It takes ages to pass through customs, it seems about 5 minutes per person. Once I finally get through I then have a long wait to get my case, why is mine always the last one out?
I am met by the driver who takes me to the hotel, the Indian Habitat Centre.
The roads going through New Delhi were absolutely chaotic, I have not been anywhere this bad for traffic since I was in Indonesia back in the late 1990’s.
At one point when we stopped at traffic lights a woman knocked on the window offering to sell an AK47 machine gun as well as a rocket launcher! I asked the driver if the guns were real to which he said yes, I could not believe my ears.
I arrive at the hotel where I am greeted by two of the brides’ family who sort out my room, they also give me a food basket as a welcome gift, very kind of them, and I am also very impressed by the standard of the room.
I meet Ragz at about 7pm and have a quick chat and catch up as we have not seen each other for 3 years, he then leaves to go and get dressed for tonight’s cocktail reception.
After an hour I go down to reception to meet Ragz and I am introduced to his family, everyone is very friendly. We leave after a short time to go to Dishas’ family home, the road along the way is very busy with lots of horns being honked.
We arrive at the house which is in a very exclusive part of the city, outside we are greeted by a trumpet and drum player and I am introduced to Dishas’ family.
The cocktail reception is being held in a huge red tent on the front garden, the house is very grand with three floors. All of Ragz friends make me feel very relaxed as I was a bit nervous about coming as I did not know anyone.
There is a large stage area and family members get up and perform songs and dance, even Ragz and Disha got involved doing a special dance together. At one point I was invited to go on stage and perform a dance with some of the family.
I spend the rest of the night drinking and being introduced to different people (it seemed as though everyone already knew who I was) this was followed with more dancing and drinking probably too much!
We left to go back to the hotel at about 2.30am and by that time I was feeling a little worse for wear, just before arriving back at the hotel we had to make an un-scheduled stop as I was feeling rather sick!
As soon as I arrived at the hotel I went straight to sleep dreading my inevitable hangover in the morning.