Kochi – Far from the Maddening Crowd

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“India does not disappoint. It captivates, infuriates, and, occasionally, contaminates. It never disappoints” (The Geography of Bliss)

Kochi is about

+ in-your-face color, there’s color everywhere you turn. Saris, walls, buildings and more

+ ayurvedic treatments, of squirming on a wooden bed with hair and body dripped with oil. It took me 2 days to wash out the oil from my hair

+ smell of lemongrass and incense to keep the mosquitos away. But I still got bitten…

+ squeezing on the cheapest train with no air-conditioning, a leisurely 8-hour ride on a local ferry witnessing life by the river and of crazy tuk-tuks (auto-ricksaws) weaving through traffic, armed with a loud horn.

+ respite from humidity in a tea-shop, with a cup of silver white tips, under the languid spin of the fan

+ of extremes, that the barbequed prawns by the road tasted as good as the 10-course degustation menu complete with a bottle of wine from the Indian vineyard

+ attending a catholic mass in the kerala dialect of Malayamlam, not understanding a word but amazed by the big turnout on a weekday evening

+ Kathakali performance, of the triumph of good over evil, and the painstaking effort of the performers to prepare themselves day-after-day for the show

+ enthusiasm surrounding the elections, but also of an unruly goat eating an election poster off the wall.

+ learning to take things slow…

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