Well, after months of planning (mostly on the part of our Team Leaders), immunizations, Indian visas, packing, airline tickets, the day has finally come!
It's "Rotary Feet on the Ground" day!
Kim and I left Gainesville GA around 11:30 a.m. on Monday morning, arriving New Dehli, India, at our room around 2:00 a.m. on Wednesday morning. That's around an 8 hour flight to Paris, three hour layover, then another 8 hour flight from Paris to Dehli. The time difference between Atlanta and Dehli is +10 1/2 hours. If you call us during the trip, PLEASE account for that half hour... Just kidding. No explanation for that yet, but I'll ask around.
|Off we go from Atlanta. We learned that 10 am is quietest time at ATL.|
|Three hour stop over in Paris.|
Sometime shortly after mid-night, we arrived at the New Delhi airport. What a welcome sight to see a person holding a big sign saying 'Welcome Zone 34 NID Team'. All of a sudden, Cynde proclaims 'There's Ajay.'
|Barry & Cynde Covington with Ajay upon arrival.|
|Kim and I with Ajay, upon arrival.|
This morning, Wednesday, we started out early, to get on the local time zone as soon as possible. First stop? The Rotary International Southeast Asia branch office. After the Zurich office, it's the largest field office we have, with 33 staff people. Although the Branch Manager wasn't there today, we were welcomed by Sanjay Parmar, the Senior Manager for Rotary Foundation activities in this office.
|Kim pointing to the Rotary suite on the building occupant list.|
Ready to enter the South Asia Branch Office of Rotary.
On the wall behind us are the Arch Klumph donors in Asia.
The four of us visiting with the Senior Foundation Staff member, Sanjay Parmar.
We were able to meet some really nice people in the staff there.
Not a lot of visitors at once, as the four of us filled the very small elevator!
From the Rotary offices, we went to view the government houses, which are similar to our White House and the Washington Mall. India's president lives there.
Several shots taken at the government houses
|Typical street screen, with lots of three wheeled 'scooter' cabs.|
After visiting the government houses, it was on to the site where Ghandi spent the last 140 odd days of his life, and where he was assassinated. There is an impressive exhibit there of his life, teachings, and his philosophies. Well worth the visit.
Next, we went to a step well. Even Ajay volunteered that he has only recently become familiar with it, even though it is not far from his home. It's basicially an underground structure for water. Hundreds of years old, the architecture and construction is phenomenal.
Cynde and Barry getting a selfie.
The streets and the traffic here in Delhi is absolutely amazing to see and experience. I've heard that it called chaos. I've heard that it's organized chaos, and I've heard that there really is some rationale to the traffic. Whatever is going on, it is absolutely marvelous to ride in and be a part of it. Traffic going in lots of directions. Lots of 'roundabouts' all over the city. Horns galore at any second you want to check. But all day, saw not one, no not one, fender bender of any kind. I salute the drivers of Delhi!
Our Driver, JOEGY with Kim.
More to come, as the rest of our team members begin arriving tomorrow evening!