My journey to get here was rather gnarly, as flying to Sun Valley to SFO via Salt Lake City and Seattle, to meet Kim, then flying overnight to NY to meet the Delhi flight with Judy, Carol and Annie. JFK which used to be gorgeous, Saarinen, I do believe, is in need of a rather enormous face lift. Even the giant Calder in the check-in area looks dated. A nice touch, Donna, the OAT rep, there to greet us, and help us check in. But it was hours in the airport, with not much seating and fairly dismal eating places. We entertained ourselves and got to visit with Judy and Carol who had attended Judy's niece's posh wedding the night before at the Ritz, in Half Moon Bay.
Kim lead us in Tai Chi before getting on the plane where we sat for the 14 hour flight. We were lucky to get out of NY before the storms. We pray for the safety of all those on the East Coast. The flight was pretty wonderful, smooth and uneventful. The food was probably the best on any flight I've ever had. Just enough spice, and just right in temperature. We took these wonderful over-the-counter sleeping pills that Kim discovered in Australia. They do the trick, and there is no groggy with them. So, for the first time in my life, I slept very well, and for many hours on the plane! After a long wait at entry, something about the computers being down, we met Krish, our guide, who already proved himself unflappable. Yes, the smells hit me right in there in the airport, a mustiness mixed with rose petals.
The outside, a grey smoggy eye-smarting that I can remember as a child growing up in LA, with an orange sun, looking rather Hawaiian sunset-ish. A very plump dog asleep right near our van. I wondered if it was blissfully napping or ill, and not in good shape. A woman with a strikingly beautiful saffron and red sari-in stark contrast to the grey of the skies. A long ride in rush-hour to the sights of small farmer's markets, men peeing alongside the road, small fires, little food stalls, some men cooking a one pot dish on one burner. Lots of vegetation, lots of merging and honking traffic. Lanes? Not much mind to them. Our hotel is up on a hill and full of marble. It's quite lovely and modern. We found Anita, MIchelle and Skip, the rest of our pals from Santa Cruz, who arrived earlier, and met some more of our group from Minnesota. Anita and Michelle have already done some great clothes shopping here! We had some lovely curry and dahl at the cafe with Skip, who had been in Bhutan for the previous week. He showed us gorgeous photos on his iPhone, and told us lots of stories. We look forward to our first day here. I just took some pepto-dismal. My tummy is a bit wonky. I'm going to try for some more sleep.
Photos coming...some technical difficulties with iCloud from one device to another.
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