Day 70 of 111. Colombo, Sri Lanka to Delhi, India
Because of construction at the Sri Lanka Airport, all flights had to leave before 8:00 a.m. For us, this translated into breakfast at 1:30 a.m. We left the ship at 2:30 a.m. We really did not see much of Sri Lanka because it was very dark. I was struck by the number of shrines along the roads in Colombo. These were easy to spot because the Buddah’s had LED designs behind their heads. The flashing lights and changing designs were surprising. There were also shrines to various saints, such as St. Anthony. The trip through the airport turned out to be rather long and tedious. We had our passports checked at least five times before we finally got on the plane. The trip itself was pleasant, however. We boarded buses at the Delhi airport and took off to our hotel, The Oberoi Hotel. This hotel was very elegant and comfortable and a welcomed relief after a day of travel.
After lunch, we had a tour of Delhi (New Delhi) and saw the government houses, many of the embassies, and the sandstone arch called the “India Gate” which is a memorial to the 90,000 Indian troops who fought for the British in WWI. The women wore the traditional Sari in town. We saw a lot of the ever-present “Tuk-Tuks,” a two-seater cab that will take you anywhere around the city for a small fee.
There were quite a few bronze statues around the city. One of the interesting statues was a commemoration of Ghandi’s protest march to make salt at the seaside. Our guide told us that India had made amazing progress in the past 25 years and by what we saw he is correct. The traffic, however, is amazing. It all keeps moving and everyone seems to get where they need to get, but I don’t know how they do it.