“To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.” ~Aldous Huxley.
Delhi has a reputation of being a nightmare for single women. So when I made the ‘bold’ transition from one of the safest cities in the world, Singapore, to perhaps one of the most unsafe, I was filled with curiosity, and to be honest, a little intimidated.
I imagined street pavements to be littered with lecherous men, seated like frogs ready to leap at the first hint of anything female. I fantasized clutching a pepper spray in one hand and my bag in the another, ready to turn-spray-run at every step. I pondered a self-imposed before-dark curfew, anticipating the dark to be the time when dangerous creatures take to the streets. I even considered ordering a taser online, for self defense is greater than the law.
2 weeks on, I’ve moved past the scores of ghastly stories I’ve heard, to find my own, not so ghastly ones. A part of the city has started to grow on me. The part that travels by the metro every day, haggles with the rickshaw guys, and walks on the mushy roads or under the scorching sun with the same determination. The part that always has a story to tell, whether you want to hear it or not. The part that wants to become a part of you.
I am yet to discover the hidden charms of this city that offers so much, so humbly. Something tells me I’m going to love it, very soon.
Photo credit: Koshyk.