Day Two on the Houseboat

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Asia » India
January 31st 2020
Published: February 2nd 2020
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Early morning on the houseboat, it’s still dark and there is really loud music coming from the Hindu temple nearby. It starts at 5:30 a.m. and lasts for one hour. The birds are competing with loud trills, whistles, chirps and squawks.

As it lightens, boats start up heading out to their day’s tasks. There are water taxis, buses, small ferries, cargo canoes and many houseboats. There are over 2,000 of these houseboats plying their way through the labyrinth of canals. Sometimes a long low canoe slides by silently, hardly noticeable blending in with the brown water. Only the white shirt of the paddler stands out.

Breakfast is ecstasy; freshly blended pineapple juice, orange slices, tiny banana, chunks of juicy watermelon and pineapple, toast, jam and perfectly boiled eggs with coffee to top it all off. Like I said before, way too much!!

The boat captain asks if we want to go for a walk? Of course we do. He shows us different things laying on the ground that have fallen off the trees. Then he explains how the locals tap the coconut palms for coconut alcohol. First they tie large nut shells to the trunk as footholds to enable climbing the tree. The whole process of tapping the sap out of the coconut flowers buds seemed long and complicated but I guess it’s popular. We walked over to the rice paddy to see older women with umbrellas on their heads bent over pulling rice plants for transplanting in bare spots in the field. As we approach they laugh and ask the man if we want to make some money. They work 8 hours and make approximately $8. We pass by a fish pond, papaya and mango trees.

Today is extremely hot, about 34 and humid. So it’s a good day to lay back on our pads and enjoy the scenery as it glides by. In the afternoon we stop at a Catholic church and visit a wood carving shop that creates pieces of art for the church. A short visit to the shops before boarding again and floating away.

After stopping for the day at 5:30 we walk again along one of the side canals, stopping to wave to the locals who are on the other side swimming and going about their chores.

Riding the boat makes everyone tired and we retire early.

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