Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Marathon - Day 6, Part 2

As we had eaten a massive lunch that day at a random restaurant, (that I can’t remember the name of) we decided to skip dinner and go to see the daily Light and Sound show at The Red Fort. We had about an hour to kill before we went to the fort so we went to see the Houses of Parliament, the Presidential residences and the India Gate.

The whole area around the Parliamentary building reminded me of the Champs-Élysées in Paris. There was a really long tree lined road that had the President’s house and Parliamentary buildings at one end and the India Gate at the other end, which also reminded me of the Ace de Triomphe. The surface of the road was so smooth and well kept so that (according to our guide) in an emergency, it could be used as an aircraft runway to evacuate the president or other such important people that needed to be taken to safety.

The closest we could get to the President's House

The President's House

The gate outside The President's House

Elephant topiary and fountain in the grounds of The President's House

Walking away towards the India Gate. Parliamentary
/Government buildings either side of the road.

Parliamentary/Government building. The buildings on both
 sides of the road are a mirror image of each other.

Looking down towards the India Gate

India Gate

After walking around near the President’s house, we were driven down to the India Gate, as it was quite a long walk. By this time it was quite dark and the whole area was crowded with people! It was as if there was going to be some event going on, but there wasn’t. There were food vendors and people selling balloons, glow sticks and cool LED arrow helicopter toys; that were being thrown up into the air constantly by people all around us. The atmosphere there was exciting and buzzing. I’m not sure why, it just appeared that it was a trendy place to take your family on a Thursday night, to hang around, meet with your friends and be seen.

India Gate at night.

It was 8.00pm by the time that we arrived at The Red Fort but for some reason, we couldn’t drive right near the entrance so we had to walk about ten minutes around the outside of it on a really dark road that ran parallel to its massive and over grown moat. It was a bit of a scary walk for my mum because I teased her that there might be snakes in the moat and she is terrified of them and she practically marched down the road, trying to get away as fast as she could! I did feel a bit bad for mentioning the possibility of seeing a snake because she said it hadn’t even crossed her mind until I said so. I didn’t realise her phobia was that bad. (Oops, sorry mum.) Luckily we didn’t come across one.

Outside The Red Fort alongside the moat

Entrance to The Red Fort

Once inside the walls of the Fort we had to walk through a tunnel that was a bit strange as it was a bit like a shopping arcade with souvenir, clothing and jewellery shops either side of it.

Strange arcade

Only a few shops were open

The show was put on outside at the far end of the Fort. We all sat down on some benches that were in front of a large lawn that had huge pillar lined buildings at the other end.

At 8.30pm, the show started. There were only about 15 people there including us.  It was the English version of the show and it began with an audio of a posh sounding man playing who told the story of the Fort, who it was built for and why and what each building within it was used for. The show was supposed to last an hour but 30 minutes was about as much of it as we could stand! After about ten minutes of sitting there in the dark listening, a few lights lit up one of the buildings, which then proceeded to stay that way for another five minutes or so before going off and plunging us into darkness again for another ten minutes.

The full extent of the Light and Sound Show

It was so unbelievably boring. I think it was one of the longest 30 minutes in my life! It didn’t help that we were also every mosquito in Delhi’s dinner either. It was a shame though because it could’ve been really good, it just needed a proper designer to come in and create some excitement and incorporate projections and maybe live actors into it.

When we decided to make our quick exit, we were followed out by at least three other couples, which made us feel less bad for leaving early!

We arrived back at the hotel at 9.30pm and sat outside on the roof top bar and ended our evening with quite a few large glasses of Kingfisher Beer.

Hotel roof top bar during the day

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