It took a bit of firmness, but it was finally less difficult than I had feared to obtain the various entertainments promised in our package.
We started yesterday evening with a trip around the local canals in a canoe. Peaceful, and nice, glimpses of lives in little houses or huts near the water, and the splashing of the oar in the dark as we headed home, interrupted only by the twilight din of the birds hopping and chirping excitedly in the coconut trees.
The food was nice, although the ‘vegetable curry’ we ordered alongside the fish was ‘somewhat bland’, and we clearly hadn’t ordered enough. For my part, I was thinking ‘family style portions’, but each dish here was clearly meant to feed one person only.
We got up at dawn this morning (6:20 a.m., the birds were at it again with their racket) for a slightly longer tour through the backwaters in a motor boat. Luckily we just chugged along slowly, so the noise didn’t prevent us from enjoying the peacefulness of the morning scenes offered to us: fishing, bathing, and washing up the dirty dishes.
We came back for a hearty breakfast of appams, and discovered that the vegetable curry wasn’t too bad with a little added salt and pepper.
By nine o’clock the car (mini-van, actually) was ready to take us to a neighbouring village for a short trek. There isn’t much to say about it apart from the fact that it was pleasant and allowed the atmosphere to sink in. Anita shot quite a lot of videos with the digicam.
Lunch was a success. We had ordered a lot of food and it was really nice — especailly the prawn masala (prawns naked, if you please). We ordered accordingly for this evening.
Half of the afternoon was devoted to laying around and bathing for me, and hotel-hunting and transport-organizing for Anita. Again, I cannot say it enough: thanks, many thanks.
Around three we set off for a brief visit of the highly coloured temple, a stroll on the beach (the soft sand and warm water made me want to bathe, can you imagine!) and a walk in the town. Our driver, Matthew, turned out to be a very nice chap who told us all about the finest umbrella manufacturer in all India (here in Alleppey only), as well as a local church we peeked into.
I’ve rarely packed as many things in an Indian day as I have today!