With thousands of people arriving per day in the winter, securing a warm and comfortable night sleep was very challenging. The white UNHCR tent could house over two hundred people laying side by side while other families often packed into the small portable tents or buildings there were 900 people in a place that had a normal capacity of 300.
This was the view in the morning after my night shift of midnight to 9 or 10am. There were not enough tents for everyone so people slept outside on the ground in front of the white tents.
When people come off the boats they can arrive to the camp at night or during the day. Arrivals are happening 24 hours a day. The first stop is getting a ticket that says what day it is which indicates when they will be able to wait in line for official Greek papers. These papers attempt to verify who they are, where they are from and how long they can stay in Greece. Many come without passports. The goal for most people is to travel to other parts of Europe as soon as possible.
I met this group of Kurds from Syria who were waiting for the registration line to take their number. They had to wait a couple days so we were able to talk a while. They were living in these larger tents that house multiple families. They invited me to stay with them. They were worried about me and whether I had a place to sleep. Their kindness and generosity really touched me. They made their way to Germany and we are in constant contact.
When I arrived to New Delhi for the first time, I was dropped off by the cab driver to a location across the street from a slum. I wasn’t sure if I was actually in the right place so I asked the cab to wait until I triple confirmed that I should actually get out of the car here. I quickly walked over to some security guards and stood near them until my friend met me. I couldn’t help but wonder what went on across the street yet was glad that with my bags that included cameras and a computer..that I was near security. Over a number of days I was introduced to people who did some outreach, fundraising and educational programming at the slum and I asked about going over there and walking through it. I was introduced to someone who lived there who walked me through. The first time I was a bit scared. I was overwhelmed by the smell, the kids running up to me, and the fact that I really had to watch where I walked as I could step in anything at any moment. At the same time I found people to be mostly receptive to me being there. What I saw was kids playing, women washing or cooking or chatting, dogs everywhere, garbage everywhere. I went back in the evening and saw people warming themselves by fires, people watching TV in their one or two room houses and groups of kids or adults hanging out. By slum standards this was one of the better ones and still life for them meant one set of bathrooms for everyone, no running water and sewerage that could run off into the narrow streets.
I had been wanting to come to India for a while. I wanted to feel like I was in a different place. I got what I wanted. I was up early and went through some of Old Delhi. Most of guys in the photos are getting ready for market. I think I walked in on where they live. I guess they do the live/work thing like we do but with outdoor showers. They are in the spice market area. having a smoke getting ready for market below
i watched this monkey steel this piece of fruit and run up here. Check out the electrical work which is really common. I don’t know if the monkey is good for sales for the ladies boutique but I did notice the sign.
Old Delhi is a busy place…dirty and loud but with lots of character.