1st time 1st hand experience is worth the experience to narrate. Such was my experience with the New Delhi Metro last January 9th.
It was that morning I planned to go to the Auto Expo for comprehensive photo coverage. My previous visit went fiasco with the whooping crowd that greeted me at the entrance. With previous ill experiences with N.D. Cabs flashing through my mind, I set myself to get there by metro.
Well, the idea sounds great, practical, eco-friendly, but where on earth and how on earth I’m gona find a Metro Station, when I could predict barely a few meters from the hotel I stayed in and having a tongue which could hardly spit out some Hindi words which never helped to convey what I wanted it to do. That’s when the technology did its part with Google Maps. Kick-starting the app, and luckily getting a few locked satellites, there it binged on my Samsung Galaxy screen “Karol Bagh Metro – 200m”. Following the Sat-nav and a quick sprint (Glimpsing the ever attractive Delhi crowd in between) there I was at the metro station.
Escalators pulled me up about 10 meters above road level onto the elevated ticketing counter. So, far so good but things looked quiet alien from the public transport system that I’m used to back in Trivandrum. There were security checks at one side, and not that crowded ticketing counter at the other. I was boarding no airplane to have me security checked. We don’t even have it at the railways. But, it’s no surprise as Delhi is one place completely under the scanner. Learning from fellow passengers I walked up the counter ticketed my destination and then cleared the security check. Learning from the gentle man at my side I showed my token to the card labeled sensor, and the gate flipped open. “Eureka” I was on to the platform.
With some pushing and pulling, I was in the metro. Luckily there were English sign boards all over the train and figuring out my destination was my cup on Tea. With a 15 minute ride I reached where I wanted me to be – Pragathi Maidan Metro Station.
Then came the best part, as usual i showed my token over the card shaped scanner, but to my surprise and irony the gate refused to flip open. A lad by my side yield out “Are Andar Mein Daal Na” (Meaning – Put it Inside). Ooh I should have figured it out, there was a token drop box by my side. The gate flipped open to the bewildered me, and I made my way to the Expo.