Arriving in India for the first time is always going to be an experience. Turning up after the prime minister has withdrawn two of the most commonly used bank notes from circulation is something else altogether.
We arrived to three hour queues for ATM’s and banks with no money. Being India, cards are still fairly infrequently used. So what do you do in Old Dehli when you can’t buy lunch? You go to the nearest Sikh Temple.
As well as being a place of worship this temple and Sikh temples around the world feeds thousands of meals a day to anyone, rich, poor, young, old, Sikh, Christian or atheist. Meals are funded through donations to the temple.
After viewing the temple we went in to the kitchens where volunteers stirred huge vats of Dahl or rolled or cooked Chapatti.
This temple that welcomed us in served one of the best meals that I had in India, simple vegetarian but tasty. Two types of dahl, some vegetables, wholegrain rice, chapatti and as it was a festival day….rice pudding!
The volunteers treated us very well and we were allowed to see in to the kitchens and even go to the front of the queue (welcome as it is quite a sight to see hundreds of people all pouring in to be fed).
Where: Chandni Chowk near the Red Fort, New Dehli
Cost: Free but please give a donation
Book: No need.
Anything else: Men and women must cover their heads. Scarfs are available in the temple if you need.