People say I have great patience, I would say my wife has greater patience.
My wife and I boarded a bus from Delhi on 21st December, 2012 for Agra. At 6-30 am, it was a bitterly cold December morning and still dark outside. It took me a while to find a rickshaw to carry all our luggage from the hotel to the bus 400 yards away. Our world was confined in those eight huge suitcases and the rickshaw puller sensed that, like an experienced doctor, at first sight. He asked for a price that he would have usually charged for carrying it 4 miles. With the December cold and that hour of the morning, me a normal haggler, had to give in.
The bus we boarded was one that carried tourists from Delhi for a one day sight scene of Agra and dropped us in front of Agra Fort. Inexperienced with the geography of Agra we had booked a hotel online situated at Idgah. After landing it was difficult to find a vehicle that would take us to the hotel 5 miles away as very recently three wheelers were banned from plying on M.G. Road. We ultimately made it to the hotel in a three wheeler mini truck with our luggage at the back. Me and my wife somehow managing to squeeze in the drivers seat.
The hotels catch line said “Royal Living” and we discovered the Royal Living in the few days we spent in the hotel. Unclean rooms with dirty bedsheets and towels, the free wifi boasted at the site never worked, the staffs were ill mannered and creepy, free newspaper? forget about delivery in the room the hotel did not get one any day. The reception was always crowded and noisy even at late hours. The hotel ran by paying huge commission to drivers who brought in foreign tourists. However the hotel was closed down in 2013 after a female British tourist complained about molestation against the hotel manager.
On Christmas Day I went to work and my wife spent the day moving our luggage into the next door “Hotel Sakura”. I did not have a vehicle and had to depend on the public transport system to return back. Not knowing the city too well and seeing the deserted dark and foggy city roads by 8 pm,we decided to have a quite dinner in the hotels dining room. It was our first Christmas together and my wife still remembers the grilled cheese sandwiches she had as Christmas dinner.
Life got better slowly, we found an apartment and my wife slowly turned it into a home. And this Christmas we are going to Chennai and Pondicherry. Being a French colony for many years Pondicherry has a good christian population and I only hope Lindsay will enjoy the sun, sea and the ambiance of Pondicherry.