Hello, it’s been awhile! I typically try to write on Thursday but last week was pretty normal so I did not have much to say and I knew I was leaving for the weekend and would have much more interesting things to report after the weekend. So, here it is!
Last week: My day-to-day is pretty normal. I get up at the same time everyday, work on personal projects for three hours, and head to work. Last week was just the same the only difference was the weather. It’s already 108 degrees here in New Delhi which makes for excessive water intake and counting down the calendar days until it cools down. I knew the hot weather would be pretty hard on me being snow is my absolute favorite and I love to be cold. But there was really no way to prepare for this part.
Something I won’t ever get used to is the pollution. Before moving to New Delhi everyone warned me about the food and how I should stockpile Imodium and Pepto-Bismol but surprisingly, what has made me really sick is the thick air and the pollution. I have developed this terrible cough that other expats have dubbed “the Delhi cough” it’s pretty constant and sounds like I have been smoking for years.
If you have a weak stomach skip this part…
Something I was really not prepared for is… If you blow your nose in Delhi it is basically just dirt and who knows what else. 🙂 In addition, nosebleeds are a real thing here. After months and months of breathing in polluted air when you are not accustomed to it you might develop random nosebleeds, which I did. This happens a couple times a week usually at the most inconvenient and hilarious times. The hilariousness is escalated because when it happens I am usually around people I can’t communicate with so I can’t explain what is going on and they’re pretty freaked out. For example, this has happened while buying grapes at the market, in the back of an Uber, during a meeting at work, and while dying fabric this past weekend. It happens all of the sudden blood starts streaming down my face, mid-sentence usually when my hands are full and I can’t get to a Kleenax.
Okay, gross part over. I debated including that but I am not the only one that it happens to so if you move to Delhi you’ve been warned. I wish I would have known!
This weekend one of my roommates and I escaped to Jaipur or PINK CITY! Jaipur was on my list of places I really wanted to visit and it was as amazing as I imagined. Everything actually is painted pink! We rented a car and driver to drive us to Jaipur super early Friday morning. This sounds fancy but renting a car and driver for an almost six hour road trip in India only costs $14 USD total and is basically the same price as the non A/C busses. We stayed in an Airbnb (they are much much nicer and cheaper than hotels in India) with the sweetest family. They sent their personal driver (everyone has these here) to pick us up from our car’s drop point and take us to where we were staying. We dropped our bags and set out on an adventure. We visited City Palace, Hawa Mahal, did a little street shopping, and then had dinner at Bar Palladio which was delicious! One of my favorite parts of traveling is eating at new restaurants!
The second day we rented a driver for the entire day and visited Amber Fort which was super cool. Probably my favorite fort in India so far. We then went to the Anokhi Museum of Hand Block Print, did some shopping (blue pottery is huge in Jaipur), and ended the day watching the sunset at Nahargarh Fort which has twelve identical rooms for twelve wives that lived there. It is on top of a huge hill and you can see the entire city.
The next two days we took a hand block printing class in Bagru. Hand block printing began in Bagru and ever since I studied textiles in high school and again during my associate’s degree I have wanted to take a class to learn the history of printing with vegetable dyes. I’m so glad I got the chance.
Since this post is getting long I will post a separate post on block printing.
Until next time,