Thursday, December 24, 2015

Delhi-Agra-Jaipur - Part II (Qutb Minar & Humayun's Tomb)

The irony of keeping update of your travel blog is the tendency to pick up every single details, and of course carrying a small note book around during the trip may help, a lot. However, it depends on your multitasking thingy - clicking the camera for good photos, observing the place, make a mental note, make a written note. Now I know that a paid travel job sometimes can be demanding yet it is exciting - seeing new things everyday and feel grateful for it.

Enough of my insignificant ramblings, lets move on.

The city tour of Delhi was one of the highlight of this course. We went by a bus booked by the institute,  all of us in jovial mood. The journey to the first site, Qutab Minar was pretty interesting with bumps on the road chosen by the bus Driver, Mr. Singh. It has triggered a long lost friend of mine,  the infamous back pain at the very beginning, however I have tried to ignore the Aunt Agony's trait knowing I was in some foreign land, cannot be too fussy.

The excursion was my first chance to have a glimpse of the real world outside TERI. I arrived in Delhi in a pitch dark night so I took many interesting photos just for a memory sake. You will never see something like this in coming 20 years. Trust me, development will change some landscape and yesteryear photos will be sought after (my theory lah, ahahahah). It was interesting that upon entering a village, the bus driver stopped for a toll fee. I was like what? OK, the idea was you are trespassing some private land, so tax is collected. Simple concept. 

I have realized the road we took brought us a good observation - how every corner allows people to conduct businesses with less binding laws or required permit. Also good for job creation and address the poverty issues. This is very practical compared to what we have in Malaysia. Creating a business need you to do a lot of thing such as registering, paying the fees, adhering regulation of setting premises and GST to add more cost for doing business. Things have been quite expensive lately. At the end, profit earned could have been brutally axed by these deduction, which leave the consumers need to pay for it (sigh).

A city tour will not be complete without a tour guide. Here comes Mr. Ally, a happy go lucky gentle man who made this excursion more memorable and fun!

Listening to the briefing.

The entrance to the complex.
visitors, local and foreigners with different entrance fees.
Qutab Minar is a must for Delhi visitors. The history makes you wonder with the technology used by the people in those days. The minaret stand tall amidst the lush greenery,where people in their own leisure can gaze and admire the beauty. It is said that no plane are allowed to fly above since the structure has quran verses on it.

Since it is a complex, definitely you can see other things, such as the masjid, the temple and the court. The assimilation of Hinduism and Islam influence was obvious to say that the area was ruled by the founder of Mamluk Dynasty who understand the need to respect other existing belief. well at least to gain acceptance from the local people. That was the spirit.

So we left Qutab Minar for the next site. If you decide to visit Qutab Minar by taking Delhi Metro, just take the Yellow Line and stop at Qutb Minar Station. From the station, it is quite impossible to walk all the way to the complex. You can take a cab, approximately a kilometer away from the stop.

One UNESCO Heritage site checked.

Some karaoke moments with participants and Mr. Ally performing some Hindi songs.Very entertaining.
Passing through the road we came across this one.The Gurdwara in Delhi looks more well maintained compared to Malaysia's eheehhehe
People and vehicles. Somewhere near to a hospital.

Chilling out, relaxing near the bridge. The cool weather really helps!
People waiting at the bus stop. I like the sari. Regal.
One of the government building being well guarded. The shade from the trees make the place even lovelier.
Local selling roses. I wish I can buy one of these but unfortunately we need to keep alert on the traffic.
The second site.

Delhi has a few UNESCO heritage sites. Humayun's Tomb for example, has been an inspiration to Taj Mahal construction, 85 years after it was completed. If you an avid Hindi movie fan, perhaps it is a familiar site you must see in those pictures. The closest scene belong to this movie ' Fanaa' starring Mr. Aamir Khan and Ms.Kajol (2006).

Poster credits - Yash Raj film

The scene of Humayun's Tomb when Aamir Khan playing tourist guide to Kajol. Unfortunately I could not locate this spot. 

It is said that those days had many people visiting not only to admire but to read Quran. It is a quiet place for recital and more peaceful feelings upon reading some verses. Too bad I could not do that. The idea of carrying mini quran everywhere and find a spot may be a good idea after this.

The tomb entrance.

The first tomb you will find upon entering the building. My friend, Pedro from Paraguay.
Kinda weird to ask the boys to pose in front of these tombs. 
While waiting for the rest of us.

One of the unique character of Humayun's Tomb are the gates built in 4 direction - North, South, East and West. All the gates look similar to me unfortunately. Sometimes you may get confused after coming out from the tomb and to find the gate you have entered in the first place. Lucky for us that Mr Ally reminded us earlier. Otherwise we would not be able to proceed for other site if any of us were somewhere else, missing in action.  

During the visit I noticed another site was under construction but not sure which preservation was made next to Humayun's Tomb. The future visitors will have more sight to see after the completion. Later we took the bus for lunch in TERI's office, The Habitat. It was a long day for us, but worth every second to know Delhi better - culturally and historically.

To be continued.

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