In New Delhi, Capital of India, we drove past impressive parliamentary buildings and the statues of many famed & decorated politicians from throughout India’s history.
We looked on with awe as we kept driving past green public areas; some parks, others mere strips of land dividing the road, but this instead illustrated generations of poverty that forced Indian families to live out in the open under the blue tarps of their humble shelter.
In Agra, home of the Taj Mahal, we walked around the gardens surrounding one of the seven wonders of the world. A breathtaking testimony of love and power from a ruling kingdom destined to leave a mark on Earth.
We saw men pushing their wooden carts full of goods; sometimes produce or flowers, but at times heavier piles of wood or metal, through traffic in the winding roads of the city.
In Jaipur, the Pink City, we marveled from our rooftop at the palace submerged in the lake as the sunrise rays peaked through the mountains. Inside Emer Fort, glass mirrors decorated the walls and ceilings of the rooms atop a mountain accessed by elephant.
After visiting the City Palace, we learned of a young prince adopted into the royal Maharaj family since there were women only left as direct descendants. Shortly after leaving, a young boy knocked on the windows of our van begging for a few rupees to eat his next meal.
A land of extremes.
Within the Golden Triangle, as its famously dubbed (New Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), we played witness to illustrious wealth and power, among widespread poverty and disenfranchisement.
Luxury among the struggle of the everyday.
And I wonder, when will those at the bottom of the triangle enjoy India’s gold?