I don’t typically travel for the sake of seeing über-touristy places. But, if something is in front of me and it looks interesting, then why not?
As of today, I’ve managed to check out the two most visited tourist spots in India. The rock garden is the second. The first is hardly a surprise to anyone as it’s a household name all over the world. You probably initially heard of it in grade school as it’s considered to be one of the seven wonders of the world.
I’ll bet that no one ever taught you that the Taj Majal translates to the Crown Palace.
If you arrive in Delhi, or probably any huge city in India, and you stay in a touristy/backpacker’s location, you’ll be a target for certain scams. I recommend you set aside $50 or so as psychological write off money just in case. This way the potential trauma will be abated.
Don’t worry. The cons are not intended to harm you. They’re only to steal your money.
That said, following are three scams that I fell victim to in Delhi.
We started at the Café Ruíz Coffee Shop. Miraculously, like the coffee tour I got at La Selva Negra almost two months ago, I was the only one to show up.
The guide, a polyglot named Carlos, told me that the day before there were 12 people on the excursion. I didn’t consider myself lucky, but I did deem myself to be on the proper side of a lopsided coincidence.
There’s probably no better way to escape a scorching hot city than to drift up to a village paradise where daytime temperatures resemble a northern late August or September. El Valle is the perfect retreat after spending time in a hot and congested Panama City. This small mountain town provides a number of things to do in an idyllic setting.
Like most Europeans and the majority of people from the American continent, I immensely enjoy chocolate; but it goes beyond that. I’m actually a chocolate fiend. It’s so bad that I have a rule, I don’t buy it. Or, I buy only a small amount, because I always eat what I have. I can’t stop if it’s there; thus, for me, this small amount is important, as chocolate has beneficial properties when consumed in moderation.
I thought that it would be easy to find a bus going north, to take me 12km to one of a bunch of coffee plantations that exist in the region. Someone recommended a particular one to me. It seemed that it would be easy to find the bus to get there, but it wasn’t. After walking for a couple of kilometers, and ending up on a road with no sidewalks, I flagged a cab to take me to the bus stop that I had finally gotten so close to.
A few days ago, at the very friendly and comfortable Hostal El Rey, I met the son-in-law of the Nicaraguan owners, a very relaxed, yet ultra-industrious former Manhattanite named Leo Castro. He was one of those fortunate souls who grew up bilingual and bicultural. Because he lived most of his childhood in the US, he’s more of a gringo than a Nicaraguan.
Listening to birds chirp while sheltered beneath the Florida sun: The über-interesting, potentially amazing trip of a lifetime is looming much closer now. In just a tad over half-a-week, I’ll be drifting along to my new earth, to a place I’ve never been, and really know very little about.
Although I haven’t actually begun my journey yet, I feel it’s nice to prepare as best as I can before actually hitting that lonely yet utterly fascinating and arbitrary path. This spontaneous trail will ideally aid in sparking a manic excitement, and an enthusiasm that will allow for enhanced creativity.