Blogs from Kollam, Kerala, India, Asia - page 4


Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam March 11th 2008

After breakfast we headed downs to the water to see if we could organize a houseboat trip! From the bible we had learned that houseboats were the best way to see the backwaters of Kerala. We arrived at the jetty in a rickshaw and were immediately bombarded with the usual touts trying to get our business. AFter checking out one companys proposition we walked around for another ten seconds and were approached by a man so eager that we should take his and only his houseboat that he piled us all into a rickshaw and drove us to see his boat. His boat was very nice and he made us a decent offer which, after some creative haggling, we brought down to a much more reasonable price if we left that afternoon. This suited us very ... read more
Tea on deck!
Local Dredgers

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam March 10th 2008

We made the effort to get up early to again take advantage of the free breakfast before we had to catch the train! After breakfast we hopped onto a couple of rickshaws and made our way to the station! Unfortunately, we were unable to book a sleeper class carriage as all were full up and we had no idea which carriage we were supposed to get on! After asking the station master where we should be, he was adamant it was the fourth carriage from the front; begrudgingly we hiked the length of the platform with all our bags and eagerly awaited the arrival of the train.. When the train arrived we joined the mad rush of people trying to cram onto the carriage, at first glance we felt we may be in the wrong place ... read more

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 25th 2008

I am getting a bit bored here.. it could very well be the lack of company... but also, I realized the south is not the India I wanted to see.. Given 6 months- 1 year.. I would relax and visit everything.. But I have 2 weeks left and need to prioritize what I want.. Kerala is beautiful.. coastal tropical area.. Many many beautiful temples.. all green, slow pace life, straw huts.. beach living.... which is all fine and dandy, but it's not what IM looking for. I am going to book a plane right to Varanassi to see the Ganges River for a few days.. the oldest city in history.. known also for the daily burning corpse.. and am advised not to be surprised if you see a dead body floating around... many old people come ... read more

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 25th 2008

Its not for nothing they say Kerala is god's own country. The beauty of Kerala is beyond all description. The diversity (and beauty) between the coastal areas and its eastern part is astounding. Kerala always makes you want to go back there.... read more

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 24th 2008

I left Varkala early morning to catch the train just 30 minutes to the hectic little city of Kollam. I decided to leave as my shoulder pain is getting better. I travelled on the lowest class, squeezing on a bench with 5 people on it, even though it was meant for 3. This carriage is more crowded and has beggars jumping on and off at each station. Travelling in this class is a great way to experience how the majority of ndians travel. As I sat on my seat, beside an Indian family I had someone come up and sing to me, looking for a few spare rupees. I just gave all my rupees to the last little beggar girl so this guy is out of luck. He was a short man, just under 5 feet ... read more
Taxi Service
Keralan Family
Indian Street Spice shop

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 21st 2008

OK..this is going to have to be short and sweet. I am at an internet cafe that only has 1 computer..i am in the middle of nowhere! its so great! my 17 hour train ride was well, a 17 hour train ride. aside from it coming 1 hour late, getting a booty grab by someone in the next compartment, not sleeping because of aforementioned booty grab, meeting some crazy people, having a run in with a furry creature, having a fight about not allowing smoking in santa monica being the same as making black people sit in the back of the bus, it was fine. i survived and with relative sanity!!! there were no english signs at most of the stations so i had no idea how i was going to know when to get off. ... read more

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 15th 2008

That is exactly many signs say all over the state of Kerala...."God's Own Country". At first I was thinking it meant the same thing we do when we say we live in "God's Country"...meaning it is a wonderful place to stay. But, here it has multiple meanings, at least to me. First, it is like one might expect the Garden of Eden to be like, luscious, with tropical trees and flowers. Second, in some places you can see a church on one corner, a shrine on another and a mosque right there too. Third, if you take it to mean the Christian God, well there are plenty of them here and they 'ain't' doing bad. I would say this may be the most prosperous state I have been in (although some of the cities, especially Bangalore, ... read more
Backwaters of Kerala
My Beach Cottage

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 9th 2008

Poovar After a short drive to Poovar, we settled into a lovely old style beach resort. Besides the lovely cabin like rooms there were outside private showers, and all the amenities of a great beach resort. Kim, Noni, and Susuan got hustled by some beach boys but a little young for them. Chindi gave us a saree donning demonstration. Then we had a another cooking demonstration with the leaf wrapped masala fish being the favorite. Then off to Delhi. ... read more
cabin in daylight
inside the cabin

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 7th 2008

After the our last, long-winded blog we thought that we would give you a nice relaxing cruise along the Kerala Backwaters. We stayed the night in Allepy which bills itself as the Venice of India. While the place holds a higher esteem for itself than we did, it was not entirely without charm. The real purpose of an Allepy visit is to get out on the backwaters in a special houseboat with a cook and captain (bathroom too). Some of the boats are huge and have four bedrooms and satellite tv. Ours, named Moonshine, was more humble but did the trick. The cruise is slow and relaxing with little to do but look out at the occasional village, read and dip one's feet in the water. A nice swim would have been great, but we weren't ... read more

Asia » India » Kerala » Kollam February 6th 2008

AS YOU CAN SEE, THERE IS NO PICTURE OF THE DOORMAN. THIS HAPPENS WHEN YOU TYPE IN THE WRONG PICTURE NUMBER AND, ONCE THIS IS DONE, my BLOG WILL NOT ALLOW CHANGES. WHAT WE HAVE HERE IS A CERAMIC SCULPTURE THAT WAS IN ONE OF THE PALACES IN BANGALORE. l LAUGHED WHEN I SAW IT. IT IS OF A TIGER ATTACKING A RAJ SOLDIER. PROBABLY DIDN'T 'AMUSE' THE LOCAL BRITSH RULERS MUCH. First, something that Jeff pointed out to me. I always show where I am writing from instead of where I am writing about. So, this means that right now I am in a town called Kollam, which is part of the Backwaters in Kerala. However, what I'll be writing about is my experiences in Banaglore and Mysore...which took place a few weeks back. I ... read more
Policemen in Mysore
Hotel Doorman in Bangalore

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