I know it’s been more than 4 years since I moved here, but there are somethings that you don’t forget, like your first impressions! Here are my first impressions of New Delhi!
On December 16th, I took a flight, my first really long flight. I was flying Qatar Airways and my first flight left my hometown in Brazil at 7:43 pm and reached New Delhi on December 18th, at 7:25 am local time. (the time in Brazil was 11:55pm of December 17th). That means that it took me more than 27 hours to reach my destination… It was a really long flight… (Poor me, I had no idea how many times I would have to take this flight again in the next years… Haha)
Once I landed I was super excited/scared/surprised/curious/desperate/tired, all of these emotions combined. So, as I entered the airport, I remember thinking: “Wow, this is a really good airport.” Delhi airport or Indira Gandhi International Airport is a very big airport, the largest in India and 16th busiest airport in the world in 2017. You can imagine how big it is, but you can’t imagine how many people are in that airport. It’s A LOT.
So, the airport was nice, no problem with immigration, no problem with luggage. Everything went fine. Once I left the airport, I looked outside and, first of all, didn’t see many people, which I’m not sure it’s because I was so tired (most likely) or if actually there weren’t many people on that day (less likely). What I realized is that there was this huge fog all around, everywhere was white and cold.
As I said, I arrived in December, when it’s winter here in India. My manager had told me It was cold and it was winter, but I was definitely not prepared for what the winter really was. See, when I think about India, I think about a hot place, with lots of people and really spicy food. I could not imagine it could be so cold during winter. But it was. I remember one day in the morning, I checked the temperature and it was 2 degrees!
The company sent me a car to pick me up and take me to where I was supposed to live. Once we started leaving the airport area, then I started to see what India was really like! I saw all the “tuk-tuks” (which, as I found out later, it’s not how they are called), the rickshaws, the roads, temples, lots of peoples, women in colorful sarees, flyovers, LOTS OF CARS, the crazy traffic….. it is a lot to see on your first day. I tried to talk to the driver, but he didn’t speak English. I found it strange because when I came, I heard that everybody in India spoke English (not true). He dropped me at the flat that company had provided and I just passed out on the bed because I was super tired!
Few hours after, my manager and one of my colleagues and flatmate knocked on my door for a little chat. They were super nice and let me sleep a couple more hours. (I was totally jet lagged but didn’t know it yet)
That was my first day in India!! Hope you guys enjoyed!