This blog is about to become a travel blog.
It hasn't sunk in that I'm here, but it also feels like I never left.
So we had a four hour layover in Dubai and I want to write about it because I have Opinions. I just don't understand. Can someone please explain to me why Dubai is supposed to be an attractive concept?
The sight I saw in Kolkata on our first day will definitely remain in my mind. Trigger warning: they are preserved human and animal bodies.
I think the thing that hit me the most during the day in Kolkata was what is also the essence of India: its contradiction.
So. Getting from Kolkata to Bhubaneswar necessitated my old arch-enemy: the night bus.
Bhubaneswar, the hot, dusty Orissan state capital, was Jess's and my home for 48 hours, and the object of our touristic energy for one day. In some ways it was incredible; in others, quite dull.
Konark, home of the Sun Temple: the epitome of Orissan temple architecture. I was really excited to visit it - and I enjoyed it, but for unexpected reasons.
Whenever I saw Orissa (the state; that is how the guidebook spells it) spelt as Odisha: I couldn’t help but think of one, very blue, leafy Pokémon… I’m so mature. Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailMoreGoogleTelegramWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInPrintRedditPocketPinterestTumblr
Indian culture changes completely every few hundred miles - and I want to record some of the ways this uniqueness manifested itself to my eyes.
Idly sambar, I love you. Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailMoreGoogleTelegramWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInPrintRedditPocketPinterestTumblr
When you think of India, more often than not, you are thinking of Mumbai, because nowhere else are the foundations of Indian culture pulled to such extremes.
What always fascinates me is how the clothes get back to their owners.
Below are some of the bizarre things that I've seen on the streets so far.
The publishing house where I work have published ten books by this man, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, and his company, The Art of Living.
Can you honestly say that you'd walk past her?
Here is where I was reminded of what South India is all about: calm.
These are the mistranslated, awkward, embarrassing, or just plain bonkers signs and adverts that I have seen.
Sugar cane juice. Get in my belly.
We only had one day in Thrissur, so we had to make it count.
We went to Pannumanur Kotta Elephant Sanctuary, near Guruvayur, and got up close to the lovely nellies.
Books sold on the street for rock-bottom prices. Heaven!
Of all of the places I visited that I had visited before, Kochi was the one I've enjoyed least.
I remember seeing the news articles about this. It was awesome to wander around and spot the graffiti itself: it definitely helped dilute the stultifying tourism of Fort Cochin. Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailMoreGoogleTelegramWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInPrintRedditPocketPinterestTumblr
This post is in appreciation of my best friend; close enough and important enough to me while I'm here to be my spouse. I'm talking about my guidebook.
Guess who we found in Mumbai airport?!
I went for a walk in downtown Mumbai, and paid close attention to what I was looking at. These are some of the results.
Munnar definitely remains one of my favourite places in Kerala for its refreshing climate and staggering beauty.
As before, I have little to say about Varkala apart from that it is wonderful: calming, beautiful, and with excellent food.
I'm leaving behind a country that I feel so strongly about.
My favourite hobby.
In the two weeks between our visits we noticed something had changed: shrines to the goddess Durga had started popping up everywhere.
The “wax” is a deep brown colour, and I know he didn’t get it from my ear. But he is a man with a sharp stick, and I let him get on with it.
I have been to a few places in my life where no matter where you look, the view is picture-perfect, and this is at the top of the list.
It angers and saddens me not just that tourists spend vast amounts on ayurveda treatments, but also that ordinary Indian people resort to it rather than scientifically proven medicine.
It feels very strange to own this letter, but I also don't want to throw it away.
I wanted to write this post to highlight the incredible linguistic plurality in India, and how different this is from the West.
The metaphorical dust has settled and once again, it feels a little bit like I never even left the country.