First 2 hours in Delhi

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First two hours in Delhi, India.
April 2015 I joined a 10 day tour of India’s Golden Triangle. The Golden Triangle included Delhi, Agra (Taj Mahal) and Jaipur. Our tour also included Ranthambore Wildlife Park.
We arrived at our hotel near the centre of Delhi at about 2.00pm, the afternoon being free before we met our tour manager at 5.00. Knowing that we had a tour of Delhi the following day I just wanted to see what I could within walking distance of the hotel. Armed with my small camera and dressed as far as possible to blend in with the Indian crowd?? I headed off. Outside the hotel, as soon as I was seen looking at my photocopied map I was persistently targeted; where you from? Where you want to go to? I will take you to x, y, z in my Tuc Tuc, 50 Rupees.
I put my map away and wandered down a street which must have been the equivalent of our Speakers Corner; a lot of protesting but I didn’t know whether they were all protesting about the same cause. It was guarded at both ends by police and looked safe but I didn’t know whether it was safe to take photographs. I saw a large noisy crowd around someone burning something; there was a media film crew so I thought it must have been safe. I took one photograph from a safe distance, as I got closer a man ushered me forward, cleared a way through the crowd and encouraged me to take photographs of what was going on, surely he didn’t think I was a senior reporter for Reuters, grateful to him that I was, I clearly was not going to circulate my pictures to the World’s Press neither could I work out what they were protesting about.
I came out of the street at the other end, passing a man having a shower; I stupidly got my map out and was immediately descended on by a well-dressed man who suggested I should visit a local craft market; ok how far to walk? No no, take a Tuc Tuc, 20 rupees each way; oh alright sounds cheap enough. He directed me to a waiting Tuc Tuc and I jumped in. He seemed to go for miles weaving in and out of traffic, continually sounding his horn which might just as well have been fitted with an on/off switch and eventually stopped outside a shop where the driver said he would wait for me.
I soon realised it was one of those places full of high pressure Indian salesmen and best quality Indian goods with no prices. No matter how much Lesley, my wife, would have liked me to stay I was not in the market for that sort of thing. I came out, found my Tuc Tuc driver who said you no like, I take you somewhere else? No I insisted, just take me back to the hotel. The total agreed price was 40 rupees. Having just changed money at the airport the smallest note I had was 100 rupees, he claimed he had no change??, of course he wasn’t going to get any commission from the traders. I immediately thought I had been done with the round trip costing over £10. Of course I hadn’t yet got my brain into gear re the money and later realised that, yes I had been done, but in reality a ride in a Tuc Tuc to match any ride with Sebastian Loeb, World Rally Champion of the day, had in fact cost the equivalent of £1.18 instead of £0.47, the experience was pretty good value really.
2 hours in India gone, 190 hours to go?
Stafford Steed