|IT’S A MAD MAD MAD MAD DASH TO THE TAJ
Or ”We went to see the first wonder of the world, the second wonder of the world is that we arrived alive”
We arrived in Delhi after a 12 hour train ride, I should mention that all trains leave on time but seldom arrive on time and we were 1hour late arriving at 9am. We made our way outside to the taxi stand all the time running the gauntlet of touts:” Sir. Taxi? Sir what you want? Sir this way I help you” We are ignoring them trying to head outside We get out and they are all yelling, “This way sir, this way, I help” placing themselves directly in your path. Its madness.
Finally we are off in a meter taxi when a guy jumps in our cab talking to our driver We say “What What “ Out on the street he jumps out of our cab to hold up a rope so we turn around and pull into a store with signs of free map, government ok tourist information, Marc screams at the driver,” Go to our hotel NOW or we get out, Go!” We are off . We have arranged for a driver at the hotel to take us to Agra, the Taj Mahal is there. We arrive, get to our room and arrange for our driver in half an hour allowing us time to clean up. I should mention we have been without food for 15 hours.!! We have to go today as the Taj is closed on Friday (Muslim holy day) and we won’t have enough time on Saturday as we fly out to Istanbul.
We have 210km to get to Agra and our driver has been told to get us there pronto. Off we go at breakneck speed passing cars and again he is laying on the horn, I should mention there are no rules of the road .The road is full of derelict buses, trucks, tuk tuks ,cars, motorcycles co sharing the road with cows, Brahma bulls, elephants, camels pulling wagons, goats, dogs, bikes . Just to make it interesting you have to dodge this assortment who are traveling up the road your side. Madness . It was disconcerting when the driver put on his seatbelt but there was none for us. (first time we have seen anyone put a seatbelt on since Australia)
You have to go through hell (the drive) to get to heaven (The Taj)
We are without food 22 hours now.!!
Words are not enough to describe this wonder of the world and I am sure that the pictures can’t do it justice. If you get a chance to see the Taj please take it as you will be amazed at it. We did get a local guide to show us then ins and outs who was very knowledgeable and who coached us on the picture taking (so if you notice a real improvement in the quality of pictures, it was him).
The only thing that was harder than the drive down was the drive back in darkness with intermittent rain thrown in for good measure. Food obtained at 24 hours aaaaah.!!!! The driver stopped at a MacDonalds (yep) and we got “Chicken Maharaja Burgers” Sign in restaurant “No beef or pork products here!”
That’s our first day in Delhi cant wait to see the next two.