|A close collision of vehicles and human traffic.|
This is the topmost feeling a visitor could ever hope for when setting foot for the first time time in a land as ancient as Delhi. Cities like Berlin, New York and Tokyo are driven 100% by capitalism. But Old Delhi is a different city altogether.
Once I've visted Old Delhi, I'm never ever going to be the same again. It's like the sounds and sights I've watched in movies suddenly came real with it's sudden burst of reality drowning me with its moving colors. This is the real India I came to fall in love with in the first place. Not it's stars and movies. But it's raw authenticity and extreme realism. All my petty problems and prejudices against other human beings suddenly vanishes together with the dusts and fumes of the vehicles passing by. And the vehicles come in all shapes and sizes too, same like its people. The roads are twice the size smaller than the ones in Tokyo. In very strange ways, the limited spaces seem to cram everything together in one square foot. And within that one square foot, I've discovered rubbish, spits, roadside vendors and folks rushing by like birds on some kind of exodus - travelling from one spot to another. And everything is connected so intricately, yet messily sometimes but always in a picture perfect moment. There's really no other place like Old Delhi. A place so ancient, I dare not spend the nights there! Just like Georgetown, Penang - haunted by its ghosts and spirits. Its people, especially those young men waiting at their trishaws waiting for customers, have that deep voided expression that I could fill colours in if I wanted, but refused to. Their looks are adorned with hardship but one that is by their own reckoning.
|The chaotic lines of wires that connects the city.|
And like bliss, I become the water that flows with it. Throngs of people coming out from the train station, up to the streets that's housing even more people! My eyes cannot seem to focus on the people but instead become fixated on the old buildings lining the bustling streets. And the streets are still in construction at the time I arrived. Even on a working day, people are still moving endlessly like a river. Unlike in a more developed cosmopolitan city like KL, we have specific times when the shopping malls will be lesser traffic. But here in Old Delhi, specifically Chowdhi Chonk - scores of people moving about in their business without the concerns of any timetable. As I looked up and towards the end of the street, I spotted a dark red building that looked so familiar. My mind and body was too tired to be walking aimlessly and suddenly determined to walk towards that red building. As I walked, the road was so uneven and rocky. At one moment, I have to ducked under some wires and the next moment a worker would be carrying a giant sack of sand across me. Hurdles are meant to be crossed when you have a place in mind. And so I prodded on, even though my throat was beginning to feel patchy.
|The Ice-cream street vendor|
|Stray dog with one ear|
|At the court of Red Fort|
To be continued..."Inside The Red Fort"
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