So as I sit here in a cafe typing this post, I’m reminded why I travel. I just completed an in depth conversation about Canadian politics, the difference between Sunni and Shi’ite, and how widely French is spoken around the world with four Iraqi guys and a girl from Paris. The Iraqis are all here on student visas, studying software engineering and pharmacy. They mix seamlessly with the Israelis at the table next to us, at least to the uninitiated – to whom Hebrew and Arabic sound the same. Being in know, I’ve caught a few glances back and forth, though the Iraqis seem to relish their position as the only Arabic speakers around, considering about sixty percent of the foreigners I’ve met here are from Israel. A little stick in the craw, I guess.

Speaking of sticks and craws, my backpack finally arrived here today, almost a full forty-eight hours after I did. What a fantastic feeling, drying myself off with a towel and changing into clean clothes. Though I had gotten used to standing under the ceiling fan for ten minutes every time I showered, which in this heat was about four times a day.

Now, you may be asking: “Evan, why the hell didn’t you blast a few rupees on a towel and a change of clothes?”

To this I would reply: “Fuck off. I travel how I travel. When you come to India you can blow through forty bucks and day and leave in a month. I have two years ahead of me, and so frugality will become a way of life, not a decision.”

Now I have splurged, in a sense. I spent almost $50 on a cell phone and an Indian SIM card. I also spent an hour this afternoon drinking chai and discussing $1000 motorbikes with an amicable fellow named Didi. By sometime tomorrow afternoon, I should be the proud owner of an Enfield Bullet, the classic British designed, Indian made cruiser for foreigners like me who want to peruse the countryside at will. I can’t wait to name her.

At any rate, I’ve added a few photos to the gallery, click here or on the “Photos” link at the top of the page. I’ll follow up with some notes on Delhi and my guesthouse soon.