India was everything I wasn’t expecting. I was expecting to find massive poverty but I didn’t. I thought I would see massive amounts of people like in China, but I didn’t. All I saw was the green of the coconut and palm trees. The blue of the water and the bright colours of the saris. The most stunning thing I saw, was the clear blue skies. I thought it would be brown/yellow from pollution yet there was none.
All of these things are probably because I was in the state of Kerala which is near the bottom tip of India. It is the “vacation” spot for most of the people in the country because of the nice beaches and the sparseness of the population. It was hot as we hit temperatures of 35, 36 and 38 C. It was winter time and the temperatures would only go up in the summer time when almost no one comes to visit.
The biggest thing to do was the “backwaters” which weaves from the northern city of Kochi down to the city of Alleppey in the center of the state. The backwaters is a collection of lakes, rivers and streams which make up India’s version of Venice. The streams are so small only to be navigated by small canoes and the lakes had huge houseboats. We spent most of our time in the backwaters using mostly canoes. We had a chance to stay in a cottage near one of the rivers. The whole experience was exactly what I wanted: lots of water and green.
I had a chance to try to cook some Indian food at a great home stay called LeeLu’s. We couldn’t stay there, since they were fully booked but they were able to make our experience wonderful by giving suggestions and making reservations without being pushy. Mr. Roy recommended a few other homestays to go. The cooking class was done by his wife and it was very good. We made some pumpkin curry, string bean curry and some fish curry. All of it was amazing.
We ended our vacation as we began it in the small beach town of Kovalam in the further south. It was a nice clean beach with huge waves. When the airline lost my baggage (beware when flying Tiger Airlines), the Kovalam Beach Hotel went out of their way to try and help me out. They were not successful but it just showed what a great place this area is because they went out of their way to help me out.
I will go back to India.