• Footloose Hobo

An Afternoon At Hauz Khas Village

So after some lunch at the Dilli Haat bazaar, I decided to head over to the Hauz Khas village not far away. The usual haggle with the rickshaw driver ensued and we eventually agreed a price (although I'm sure Indians would never pay as much) and we headed off again whizzing through the streets of Delhi.

We arrived a short time later and I started to explore the area. Hauz Khas is in a relatively affluent area with plenty of boutiques and trendy shops along with many bars and upmarket restaurants. There are alleyways leading off the main road taking you to many of the little shops that litter these passages and there are some great items to be bought. I soon began to notice how many young Indians there are here, guess that's why there are so many upmarket shops and clubs.

Hauz Khas Village also has a thriving arts scene with plenty of studios and artists. There are tattoo shops and the street art can be seen around the area. This artwork I saw on a building as I was walking around the lake and had to negotiate a number of paths and alleys to find them. It was worth the effort

There are also the ruins of the Firuz Shahi madrasa and Mosque, a large ruined complex with good views over the lake.

This also the large Tomb of Firuz Shah, a ruler who is buried here. There are many levels and passages in the complex to explore and is a nice area for a sit down to take in the view.

I noticed how popular this area is with the young courting Indian couples as there are plenty of areas in the shadows where they can be out of sight of gazing eyes.

I decided that I would venture a little further into the surrounding area of Hauz Khas Village. It didn't take long to find the other side of life. Here the children run semi clothed in the streets and little concrete and tin roofed huts are the main living quarters. I bumped into a couple of guys who were kind enough to show me their living area. They both shared a room which was around 7ft square with mattress on the floor, a small gas burner, small fridge and a washing bowl. The few clothes and possessions they had were hanging in a net on the wall. The people were friendly and happy to have there picture taken, but please make sure you ask first and prepared that some will ask for money after you have taken the picture. I always offer a little money for allowing me to photograph them, most refuse it.

(I must stress at this point that I'm not a person who gets a kick out of visiting slum areas. I find it very sad that people still have to live like this in the 21st century, however I love to explore the real India, and not some tourist tour. I really enjoy meeting people and finding out about them and their way of life, as much as they like to know about me.)

More pictures can be found in my gallery.

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