New Delhi, India: The Heart of India

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New Delhi, India: The Heart of India

The Hindi word for heart is Dil, and Delhi – or Dilli as we like to call it – is truly the heart of India. I have lived in this wonderful city my whole life and I wouldn’t willingly leave it for even a beach side villa in The Maldives. I have grown so used to the hustle of this metropolitan city that my days merge into night without my realizing it.

People often see my beloved city through the lens of television and movies, but honestly that is only one fragment of the vast mosaic of Delhi.

I lived in the poverty-stricken part of Delhi during the early days of my childhood. Here even the basic amenities, like water and electricity, were not a luxury for us to enjoy. The place was severely underdeveloped and we played in empty plots. Obviously my health started deteriorating and my lovely mother moved us out of that first house where we lived together as a family.

We moved from a huge house in a bad locality to a small flat in one of the newly developed parts of the city. We were put into good schools and our childhood blossomed.

I distinctly remember riding a bicycle in one of the many parks of my locality, complete with all the flowering plants I could name and more. No longer did we suffer from the lack of clean drinking water, 24 hour electricity and a safe neighbourhood – and I could transform peacefully into a teenager.

People often see my beloved city through the lens of television and movies, but honestly that is only one fragment of the vast mosaic of Delhi.

AG

During the weekends, we dragged our parents to the new malls, which popped up every few days. My father, a man of meager means at that time due to the recent house purchase, could not afford to buy us all we wanted, but always found ways to get us all that we truly needed.

We have seasons here, and not the mild ones – the harsh ones that kill people. Summers are so hot that the temperature shoots up to 50 degrees C (122 degrees F) and it becomes impossible not to get tanned when you are out and about.

All schools have vacation in the months of May and June. This is the time to go for early morning walks after late movie nights and sleep all day because there is nothing to do. My mom put me into different hobby classes, and I developed an interest in Arts & Crafts and Reading & Writing only because of all the time I spent discovering myself.

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Summers also involved plans to visit the numerous historic sites in Delhi. These plans failed miserably because of intolerable weather. There is actually a popular saying that says “no one living in Delhi has visited all the world heritage sites,” like the Old Fort, Red Fort, Lotus Temple and Qutub Minar. Honestly, even I have not seen them all because of the bustle of everyday life. When you live in a city, these things don’t hold the same charm.

Just after summer, monsoon season is the time when the skies pour out immense amounts of water, making the weather pleasant and the streets fill like a series of brooks leading nowhere. I love the rain, we used to play football in the mud every time it rained. Falling into mud never felt that good.

As I grew up, I felt the city grew up with me. The metro rail, that has now become the primary source of travel for millions of people living in Delhi, was expanding its routes to leave no part of the city untouched. More malls started sprouting, but the major markets were never affected. Sadar Bazaar still remains the busiest marketplace I have ever seen in my life. It is said that you can buy anything here – from a tiny hairpin to the components needed to manufacture an airplane. I can vouch for that.

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The city is divided into two main parts. Old Delhi shows you the Delhi that everyone raves about, from historical sites to the fantastic markets. New Delhi is more developed and looks just like every world-class city should look like. What connect them both is the spirit of the people and the vast multitude of cultures that join them together.

People come to Delhi from all parts of India, speaking a variety of different languages and making my beloved city the rainbow of cultures it truly is. I feel like a bit of Delhi has stayed in my personality and will always define who I am, even if I move to another place. We accept wholeheartedly, eat indulgently and live freely. There truly is no place like this on earth.

For more on India, check out Goa and Nainital.

Ayushi Grover

Ayushi Grover

I grew up in India to a middle class family, and have just graduated with an Engineering Degree. Always a bibliophile, my love for food and adventurous spirit have transformed me into a blogger. I believe in looking beyond the obvious and finding beauty in what seems monotonous to the unobservant eye. Bridging the gap between carefree and careless, I believe life is a climb - but the view will be great!

1 Comment

  • Erika
    Erika

    I can tell you really love Delhi – thank you for sharing!

    June 1, 2017 at 8:16 pm
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