|Raya (Prince, King)💘|
- Greeted by huge mudras (photo in next post) mounted on the walls - lovely. Some money exchanged mostly for train/bus travel to the ashram and food; no intention to shop much. Tried to get a SIM card for Regal's old phone - not successful, phone was locked. Ok, was planning to be mostly off-line anyway. No need to look for an ATT store to have the phone unlocked. I really was yearning to spend a lot of time off the grid, great; the universe is with me.
- Met Nikolai, a German guy on the Metro after just hanging out at a lounge for a while to get acclimated and prepare for the next step. He was very vocal and loud about how much he (and everybody) hated New Delhi. The air quality was extraordinarily bad that day but somehow it did not bother me, I was in India, and yes, (I knew we terribly screwed up our planet), at that moment and throughout my stay in India, I was more forgiving about this issue, I just accepted it. The sun of course was that beautiful smog red. I later came to realize that the smell seemed somehow familiar. The answer came to me after days of pondering about it at the ashram; it was similar to the cloud hanging over Manhattan after 9/11 (!!). Nikolai had good advise regarding a meeting point with my colleague/buddy Arve: the Metro station rather than New Delhi Railway (that had been our plan). He went on and on with details on how bad the train station was and why his suggestion made sense. Later on I understood (thank you Nikolai). So I just stayed in the plaza wedged between gun-armed security personnel inside the Metro Station and vendors and street dogs (how surreal) and waited for Arve.
- I made friends with a street dog named Raya and chatted with the vendor who named him. Pet therapy never fails. I was feeling good and at home in India. And my love affair with India's beautiful, sweet and smart canine population had just begun.