I knew I’d have to fill in a day while lugging my luggage around Delhi, so I started with an early morning run. Everyone looks at you when you run in India. To cool down I did some concentrated tv watching then went to the cheap backpacker district near New Delhi train station.
When I tried to exit the station I was mobbed by people trying to paint Indian flags on me and sell me ‘I am Anna’ hats. I busted through them and crossed over the tracks to be mobbed by rickshaw drivers trying to take me places. I found an internet place and hid while updating this blog.
For dinner I decided to go international for once, and ordered ‘spaghetti with tomato and chicken”. It turned out to be fried spaghetti with some sort of spice, with tomato and some chicken parts.
I went looking for a postbox near the Metro station. Nothing to be seen on my first pass. Harassed by rickshaws I decided to ask one.
‘The nearest postbox is 500m away. I can take you!’
No! A bit more walking revealed a postbox about 20m away.
I went to the station to catch the airport express. On the way I passed some sailors sitting on their sea-chests. The airport express is very good and only 80 rupees. Then I had to wait until 3 am before checking in. To simulate the experience announce Please do not leave your bags unattended! every 15 min for 6 hours. It is much easier to sleep in the departure lounge as they have reclined couches.
I flew Turkish Airlines to Istanbul. They have a very good in-flight entertainment system with recent films (Battle Los Angeles). The food was also very good. At Istanbul the woman at the gate to my Cairo flight was convinced I needed an Egyptian visa and nearly made me miss my flight. I did get on, eventually, and simply bought the visa on arrival for $15.
There is no easy way to get to downtown from Cairo airport. I ended up taking a taxi who tried to increase his fare when I arrived, after he had spent 20min driving around because he didn’t know where he was going. Egyptian men do ask for directions but the people they ask do not know anything about the local area.
I found my homestay, and watched television for a while before finding out the local time was much earlier than I thought. I went for a walk.