We flew down to South Kerala so that at least for the last two weeks we could be warm at night and, hopefully, Michelle could lie on a beach. As we flew in and we could now see the houses below, Michelle was excited; “Look! It’s beautiful, just like Venice with houses alongside canals”. This is more like it after the dry bustle of Delhi. Unfortunately, our enthusiasm was soon dashed as our taxi driver told us of the rain the night before, how roads were flooded and some people had been killed. However the south is much cleaner with better roads and seemingly more affluent with no hassle.
Our hotel, The Fortune South Park, seemed nice but smelt damp, maybe from the floods. It was New Year’s Eve and we had chosen to stay at this nice hotel to join in the celebrations. Once again we were disillusioned when we were told that they were having a buffet with music at a cost of 3,000 rupees (£37) each. Although we were welcome to join them, Terry, being the skinflint he is, declined. Trivandrum is not a hive of activity but we went out looking for a nice restaurant where we could honour them with our presence for the turn of the year. Alas no! After following Michelle’s wish to go only to a restaurant recommended in the ‘Rough Guide’ we walked and walked. A few ‘tired views’ were exclaimed but after nearly an hour we found said restaurant, unfortunately closed. Michelle now gave up searching and we chose the nearest one which certainly would not have been recommended in any guidebook. After asking for a clean tablecloth the waiter merely took the top layer off exposing one that was only partly dirty. However, the food was great and being the only westerners that had ventured in (probably ever), we were made very welcome and everyone insisted on shaking hands with us and wishing us a Happy New Year.
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