The trip just starts !
A night bus between Bordeaux and Paris
A flight from Paris to Bombay ! And we are waiting now in Bombay to take a plane to Colombo.
Very tired.See ya soon
We arrived here at 4:05 am with Amelie, a french friend who is traveling for one month (last picture)
We went to the city center with an israel and canadian girl.
Tuk tuk drivers are so crazy (and lot of pollution), they say that they know exactly where you wanna go and they are as lost as you!
After that we went to the ambassy of India for the next visa and we met a russian guy who gave us a good plan for a backpacker
We couldn't find it by walk then a nice sri lankais gave us a lift
First f****** spicy food!!! We will be use to it hopefuly
Then we met a friendly guy who is goin soon to Paris for his honeymoon
And to finish this long day : beer !!
We left Colombo this morning , too much trafic there. We took 2 bus for 5 hours to Kalpitiya in the north. The way of driving is really not the same that Europe. It's crazy driving and also the bus stop. They look the same like the roads so I dont know how they can reconize it. All the people were lookin at us but always with a shy smile.
We ate in a local restaurant with right hand like them. Yummy and cheap food.
We are now in a lovely beach resort in the "middle of nowhere" and we could swim in a hot water (cows on the beach). But wearing a bikini here is quite weird, women are pudics here and we have to respect that!
See ya soon!
6/10 . We took a bus for 3 hours to go there. When we arrived we went to a nice lodge with Perrera, a tuk tuk driver. Bus stop and hostel are quite far away and you can't walk that far with your heavy backpack.. Also It's difficult to find some signs, streets name so you feel a bit lost.
Perrera is actually a friend of the lodge's owner and propose us for a cheap price a look around the different temples, area..
You always have to negociate because there is a big difference between local and tourist prices, even if you don't feel confortable with that because there is a lot of poverty...
Very nice afternoon and Perrera introduced ourselves to his family. Another face of Sri Lanka...
07/10. Speaking of this other face, we arrived after 4 hours by bus in Jaffna, the top of the north, in the city center. We are in the Clock Tower Hostel. Don't go there ! Looks nice on booking but not really. Warm and dirty rooms for the price..
Let's talk about the city center.. giant beane! Plastic bottles, bags everywhere, poor people, destroyed buildings.. because of the war they had few hears ago.. people are still friendly and curious.
08/10.We took a bus this morning to go to the area beach. We were not sure to be in the good bus and nobody could help because they didn't speak english. Finally it was the right one and we arrived 1 hour after. We met there Eryca, an 25 years old slovakian girl and Tilak, a 60 years old sri lankais man. She helps him with his coconut plants against accomodation. We took a small boat together to go to Dealth island. I was really sick on the boat because there were a lot of waves.. anyway, after one hour we arrived on this lovely island and spent the day with them. Very nice people and talks! We stayed a long time in the water with some cinghalese boys who took so many pictures with them because we are white.. some of them were playing local music and we sang french songs for them. Friendly moment!
After that we went back to Jaffna center with Eryca and Tilak who gave us a lift and we ate with them in a yummy local restaurant!Tomorrow we will leave the city with them for a new one... :-)
Finally we stayed with Tilak and Eryca for 4 days and Tilak drove us until Trincomalee. When we arrived there, there was a live to celebrate Che Guevara and we danced with everybody there.. kids, boys, old, was awesome! We also visited a hindouist temple and saw a blessing ceremony. Religion is very important here! We also visited hot springers! It looked not so natural.. and we went one night in Fernando guest house to have a caipinrinha , it was a very touristic place.. we danced on the beach! Very nice moment
11/10. We went with Tilak and Eryca to this city 3h far from Trincomalee, on the cost. It was a very nice and relaxing day on the beach :-)
12/10. Time to say goodbye to Tilak and Eryca. Thanks to them for everything. We will miss them.
So Tilak drop us at the bus station and we met there 2 germans guys, Max and Alex and Saschan, a cinghalese who lives in Germany. Those 3 friends are travelling together and are going to New Zealand after!
They were also going to Polonnaruwa. Arrived there we didn't know where to sleep. A tuk tuk driver came (as usual) and proposed us to stay in Palm Garden ! Go there if you are in Polonnaruwa. The owner is very funny and friendy ! And the rooms are also good! It's out of the city so quiet and peaceful !
We decided to stay together and visited the ruines and temples from 1000 years of this area. Even if It was very warm, we spent an amazing afternoon !
Polonnaruwa is definitly a lovely place.
13/10. We all woke up very early this morning and took 2 busy bus to go to Sigirya. It's a famous place in Sri Lanka so very touristic because there are some high rocks you can climb to have a panoramic view of the landscape.
We arrived there around 11pm and the sun was already shining so much! Too hot to do the treck. We had to find a place to stay and drop our bags! We visited and compared few rooms and finally Alex found a good one that he already knew before, with a great view of the rock : Lakmini hôtel. Still a cheap price!
We met the owner and he told us about a safari around here, a bit expensive but we could share the price. After à yummy meal together in a local family restaurant, we've been to this safari with the jeep you can see on one of the picture! The earth here is very dry because It was not raining for 6 months.. imagine!!
We started the safari with monkeys, birds, but nothing really special because animals are hiding of the sun. I have to say that we were a bit desperated. And then we saw some elephants! Everybody was happy and we enjoyed that moment even if there were others jeeps. Touristic park..
And the crazy thing : It was raining a lot on the way back! 1st rain!!!
We spent the night at the guest house playing cards: asshole (president/trou du cul in french)
With the "german guys", we decided to wake up at 4:30 in the morning to climb on this rock and watch the sunset there! We chose this rock and not Sigirya rock because It was cheaper (500 rp instead of 4500 rp for sigirya rock) and you have the same view. You "just" miss some old painting. Anyway we climbed, it takes halft an hour to arrive at the top and It's quite easy (a bit difficult when you are a smoker and you are sleepy, It's just steps).
Anyway we had a beautiful view !!!!
After the sunset, we came back to Lakmini hostel, took a bus and went to Dambulla with a french couple. We said goodbye to Alex, Max and Saschan because they had other plans for the rest of their trip. Maybe we will catch them in an other place. Or was nice to stay a bit with them.
A positive and negative point for me when you are travelling it's that you spent good time with a lot of different people but feel always to short.
So we stopped at Dambulla by bus and it was full , even french travellers, and we went straight to the rock temple.
Wonderful place to see in Sri Lanka and It's free !! Old bouddhist temples, paints, hindouist parts.. Incredible!!
Then,around 2pm we took a bus to spend the night in Kandy. Very long day..
14/10 to 16/10.
Kandy is quite a big city , noisy and a lot of people. But there is an artificial lake in the middle so looks better ! But if you don't want to spend a lot of money It's difficult to find something to do. We just went to Kandyan dance, tourist live about 5 different kind of local dances but actually they all looked the same!
I went by walk to Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha statue and I had a nice view of Kandy. On the way back, I met Gerard, an english guy that I've already met quickly in Anaradapuwara. We spent the afternoon together . Heavy rain ! So we went back to the guest house, friendly manager and good rooms! And we spent a chillin night. Nice talks with him :-) Gerard if you read that you know what I mean!
If you have enough money, love temples, royals gardens and mountains, go there!
7 hours by train in the 3rd class. When we bought the ticket at the train station , the guy was surprised and insisted for the 1st or 2nd class but we refused. A lot of tourist choose these class but we wanted to travel with local people. And we did. We were sitting a long time on the floor in front of the door, our legs outside. We had a really good view of the landscape with a cinghalese family sitting next to us. So much fun! Even if the weather was cloudy! Train is full of people, like the bus!
Ella is a small and touristic town in the middle of the mountains. There are so many hostel, guest house, this is insane!
We did the little adam's peak this morning and an other track in tea plantation with a french couple, Cindy and Lucas. Quit a lot of french travellers.. You don't have so many things to do here if you don't like hikking. We stay 2 nights and we will move after to Nuwera Eliya!
Very cloudy day ! We took again this beautiful train and when we arrived in Hatton, a tuk tuk driver proposed us to come in his backpacker : the rock view ! We negociated a cheap price but when we arrived there, at 4km from the city center, the room was very bad. We are simple girls but this one was so smelly and dirty. So we left this place in the middle of tea plantation surrounded by a lake. We walked one hour with our 12kg bag to find an other guest house. Nothing. We hitchiked and a cinghalese gave us a lift until an other place. Bad new? It was 12000 rp and we normaly pay 1500rp. Such a joke. Impossible to negociate. So we waited a local bus and we came back to the center to find a normal room. Still expensive. We were tired, even exhausted so we decided to leave this city, bad feeling and we went straight to Nuwera Eliya. It was almost dark when we arrived and we just met a french family that we already met in a bus in Sigirya so we followed them to their guest house. Nice place : park view guest house!
Cloudy day again. It's very cold on this area. We woked up at 4:30 am and went to a this area with the french family, Victor, Anne france, Ben,Olivia the baby, and 2 chinese girl. After 1h driving we arrived there and we had fog pour the sunrise. But after one hour. It was a bit shining so less cold. We walked 3 hours around this place (800 m altitud) , it was nice but It's not really the good season to go there. It's better in january, anyway we still enjoyed it. A lot of chinese people doing too many picture, after we went back to the guest house and the driver dropped the others at the train station.
After Horton's plain we spent the afternoon in this city and explored it. So different.. we assisted at a crazy scene at the hostel. A taxi driver brang 3 french girls and asked them to pay a room very expensive so Amelie told them the normal price in french and I was speaking with the manager and we explained that the driver takes a commission on the room. But if the girls decide to leave the driver, go to the city and come back, they will have a cheap price. That's what we do.. the driver was mad even if the girls already paid him the lift. The manager was quiet, like he did nothing. Crazy..
Anyway we are now in Colombo to see Tilak :-) (Ref. Trincomalee city)
A morning in Colombo with Tilak.Nice drive around the city and amazing visit of the museum. 3 hours about history, religion, culture, nature.. of Sri Lanka ! It's the thing to do in Colombo. And an advice : wake up very early to enjoy a bit of silence in the city ! After 7h30/8h , it's busy... pollution, noise!
Eryca,our slovakian friend from the beginning of out trip joined us in Colombo and we took a bus in the afternoon to go in Matara, in the south. We booked Guillet beach house next to a lovely surf beach. It's a family who actually rent 2 rooms in their house. There is this little girl, Hiruni, 13 years old who is just amazing. She speaks a very good english and is so energetic! We slept very well in this place, It's quiet and clean! We bought a bottle of Arrack, local coconut liquor!
This morning we had a really yummy and huge breakfast cooked by the owner's wife : eggs, toast, mango, banana, papaya, tea..After we went in town to visit. There was a cricket game. After that we found this temple on the beach. Beautiful place! But a monk was flirting with Amélie.. very disturbing with the religion herself. And we also assisted to a kind of preparation/ceremony about a monk and a family. It was maybe because of a future wedding.. we don't really know. After that we had a look in town and ate a veggie rice in a local place for so cheap. 500 rp for 3 with drinks.
After a swim next to the guest house at the end of the afternoon, we had dinner with Hiruni and she was translating to her mother our talks. Then she teach me hindi couple dance, it was very funny. Amelie, Eryca and me feel a special link with this lovely kid. Let's go to bed now! Very hot day by the way
Mirissa it's a town in the south on the coast , it's lovely but very touristic. You feel that you have 60% tourist , 40 % locals. People are lying on the sand, enjoy the sun, some others surf. There are a lot of restaurants and bars on the beach, expensive food , better to eat in town but It's really nice to have a drink the night.
So we arrived here on monday with Amelie and Eryca by bus from Matara and we found online before a nice guesthouse : green garden next to the beach. Owned by a sri lankan cute family ! Cheap rooms, breakfast included. We enjoyed the beach, a temple, people. We went in town with Amelie to grap some food and we met 2 australians brothers on a motobike and they proposed up to go on it. So we went in town 4 on a motobike . Very funny. We met them after in a bar with a french couple we also met before in others cities in Sri Lanka. We were sitting together, drinking mojito and beers. I went to order a new beer at the bar and finally had a sit there. I start to speak with the owner and his friends, we shared talks about life, travel, religion.. sometimes I couldn't understand everything because of the loud world music and the accent but It was kind of funny. Anyway the boss was serving me those strong glasses of vodka sprite for free, and I didn't want to refuse it. So I was drunk after that. So with Amélie we came back to the guest house around 2 am with a short run. Don't really know why. Bad feeling when we woke up but after a nice breakfast it was better. Eryca left Mirissa this morning to meet an other friend, pretty sad but we will meet her again in Colombo the day before living Sri Lanka :(
She is such a great person, interesting, funny, just awesome. Love her. So after she left, we've been to the beach and I started to talk with a israel guy. He explained me that he was here since a while with his friends to surf, that he's going to India after , like me. Amelie's huncle was really painful today with we walked a lot since 3 weeks here. So she needed to relax on the beach. This Israël guy, Yuval, proposed me to go in Weligama to surf and I already wanted to go there today. It's an other small town 15 min driving from Mirissa. So I went there with him on his scooter and he rent a longboard there for so cheap because he already knows every locals in this place. And after he teached me to surf ! And the first time I took a wave, I did it so properly, like I did it before. It was a good feeling with the sea and this new friend. After we went to a bar on the beach to get some juices, chilling place you can see on the pictures. We came back at the end of afternoon. It was cool. All the locals people are very friendly here, they are interesting to know where you are from, your trip...
Even if Mirissa is quite touristic, It's good to have this kind of break. See you!
Hello everybody ! It's friday 28th of october and we leave Sri Lanka on monday..
What about these last few days ? We finally decided to stop moving a lot for this last week so we stayed in Mirissa ! You have to visit that place but at the end of your trip, because It's the kind of place you completely forget the time ! We met quite a lot of locals and tourist people. The best was the local of course! On Mirissa beach, you have few bars and almost every night there is a party in one of them. They actually share the tourism business. They also have fresh fishes that fishermen caught the morning! So in a bar, you have maybe 10 person who are working and each person has her mission. I mean 2 guys take the orders, 2 prepare the drinks, 1 just take care about the bill/money, 2 brings the plates, others in the kitchen. You will never see a waitress, woman are just in the kitchen. Not in every restaurant of course but in Mirissa beach It was like that. I liked watching them working, It's at the same time very organised and very slow. It's always a family business, parents and kids, or brothers and sisters, or uncle and aunty, or everybody together! It's very nice to realize how a family is really close in Sri Lanka. So a lot of young guys are working in bars and restaurants all day, all night without break. They are hardworkers and proud of it! We spent many moments speaking with them about life, work, tourist.. around a beer ! They are kind, respectful and also funny. I heard from them lost of crazy stories about drunk tourist, girls.. it was really interesting to have their opinion about tourism. Even if it's hard work, they are always happy to meet new people from everywhere. I met this srilankan guy who was speaking good french because he went to hossegor, biarritz to get a surf license. It was really strange and awesome to listen this guy speaking french about his experience! Brave man.
After 2 days and 2 party in Mirissa, we felt like every local knew us : Ayubowan (hello) How are you today ? Sababa (all good) What are you doing ? Have a sit, let's talk a bit ! Okay, (harihari)! Mirissa chillin life ! We went to few beaches (secret beach, weligama), surf, temples (ahangama, a small village).. We actually change our rythm here. Normaly we go to bed between 9pm and midnight and wake up around 7am, but here we lived more the night. But it's good vibes. We couldn't imagine having this kind of party in Sri Lanka and feel safe !!
The family you can see on a picture has a local restaurant next to the guesthouse we stayed. We ate there 3 times and played UNO cards together! We shared games, food, dance and songs. It's one of my best moment with a family in Sri Lanka. We cryed and we said goodbye, emotional moment. I just can't explained it right now. If you are a smiley person and open mind, beautiful things can happen with others ! The name of the restaurant is : seafood bon appetit.
Now we are going in Colombo again in Tilak's house because there is a bouddhist ceremony, event tomorrow. Feel already super sad to leave Sri Lanka.. magic place..
Our last week-end in Sri Lanka is finished. We spent it with Tilak having a look around Colombo city, temples and areas. Thanks to this amazing man for his hospitality, talks, his shares. After just one month in Sri Lanka this is what I will remember :
- Smiley Faces : even if it's warm, raining, noisy, beautiful locals keep smiling & it gives you happiness. From kids to old people.
- Curiosity : when you're walking in the street, waiting somewhere or having food, some people always ask you these questions = What's your name? Where are you from? Do you like Sri Lanka? How long have you been here? What is your job in your country?
-Poverty : more in the north. Most of the people live with nothing, a basic house it means bed+kitchen+bathroom, cheap local food and hardwork job. Of course in a big city like Colombo or Kandy, you find rich people in residential houses.
- Hardwork : Man like women work very hard. All day long. Tea plantation (old women), restaurant, guest room, tuktuk & bus driver. Some of them go working oversea (in Qatar for ex) for fews years and come back with more money for their family. Children go to school or/& help the business family.
-Helpful : People leave you their phone number or cards if you need anything, help you to find your way, a place to stay, tell you the places to visit (even if sometimes it's just tourist business)
- Sun : Almost sunny and warm in all the country, you're sweating a lot but you are used to it after a little while.
- Religion : part of the srilankan life. Bouddhism, hindouism, muslim.. They pray everyday, bring flowers & money to Bouddha. Sometimes it can looks very commercial. But the fact to believe in Karma brings honesty ! It's interesting too see how people here dedicate their life to religion.
- Transport : wonderful lanscape with the train, crazy bus driving, funny tuk tuk. A thing = in the bus nobody let his place to old women, just child. You pay your ticket inside after have found a sit to a guy who is working with the driver. You also listen loud local music in there and sometimes watch a movie.
- Woman's image : You seen more men outside especially the night because women have normaly to stay home. They are wearing long clothes even if it's really hot. They take care about everything in the house & also kids. Men take care of money. That's the main reason why I will never live all my life here. I didn't say that women here are beautiful (very skinny)
- Be careful : it's frustrating but you have to pay attention to many things = people who try to increase the price (ex: tuk tuk, guest room, market, rooms..) because you're white, you're a tourist so you have money. Always negociate even if the price look already cheap. When you want to see the beach at night, some boys try to talk to you and invite you to a party. Sometimes you want to join them, have fun but you never know how it will be so you keep your distances. We actually didn't in Mirissa because it's a touristic place and you can always find other people around. And we met lovely locals. It's really difficult to find the balance between trust and mistrust.
- Landscape : dry areas like savannah, bush, forest like jungles, moutains & tea plantations, beach & blue water, animals (monkeys, elephants, snakes..)
- Food : rotti, kotthu, vegetable rice with curry, hoppers, spice, fruit. Cheap and big portion !
Thank you Sri Lanka for this amazing trip. I'll miss you, and Amelie for sure.
A wink to Amelie because the trip was not that easy for her ! Her foot and hand were painful especially at the end. She lost a lot of things : rain coat, 2 pair of basket in the bus, sun protection for battery, view glasses!!, sunglasse, whistle/compas!
After 1 hour by bus to get to the airport and 1h30 by plane from Colombo to Chennai, I can say : I'm in India !
There were maybe ten taxi try to get me in and finally I took one to arrive to the guest house. I was too lazy to take the bus. I try to speak with this driver but I just couldn't understand his accent/english. As usual he told me that he knew exactly where the hostel was but he didn't. So he asked to few people and after 1h I saw the sign ! I was happy because this guy started to tell me that I'm pretty..blabla
It was 6pm when I registred myself at the office and put my backpack in the dorm. Then I went outside to have food and I met straigh Siddhart, an Indian student in journalism. I actually just smiled to him because he has a friendly face and he came and asked me what I was doing here. So he showed me a restaurant and stayed with me.
He was in Chennai to visit his parents for the week-end. After dinner, he brang me to few hindou temples around the area. We crossed a lot of busy roads.Dangereous bus, bikes, cars. After I came back to the dorm. And Seb arrived. Seb is a french guy I met on a traveler website and we decided to visit India 1 month together. I don't have a picture of him yet. First good impression, looks like a nice guy. Red lollipop hostel is a nice place by the way, relax to start a trip in India.
When I woke up this morning, I met Daniel from Swiss and proposed him to come with Seb and me to Mamallapuram, a famous place which is 1h30 by bus from Chennai. Nice place, good feeling together.
After Chennai, we went in Auroville beach, next to Puducherry spend few days.
India is a very busy country. A lot of people, bus, cars, bikes so a lot of noise ! It's also dirty everywhere, from the village to the big city. I just can't explain it, you have to see it. It's different from everywhere. Anyway.
Yesterday, 3/11, we had a long day. We went to Auroville community to get a pass (I'll explain everything about that later) and had 2 hours of bus on the east to see Gingee fort. An amazing place.
Gingee fort is the biggest fortress in Tamil Nadu, a hidden gem to visit ! It was so hot and we had to clim lot of steps to go at the top, and have a great view !
After that, we walked to Gingee town and waited half an hour to catch a bus to Pondi. Long way back. We had food in a nice indian restaurant in Mission Street and came back, tired, to the guest room.
4/11. This morning we had a visit of Auroville community. Auroville was conceived as a place of research into the ideal of human unity by the Mother, the spiritual collaborator of Sri Aurobindo in 1968. The idea was to build a futuristic city where people of goodwill can live together in peace and progressive harmony, above all creeds, politics, nationalities. 2000 people live there. Buildings are a combination of modern western and traditional Indian elements, in a rural and deep red landscape.
We saw the central Matrimandir which is not a temple but a place for individual concentration : "a symbol of the Divine's answer to man's aspiration for perfection".
We spent a nice moment there. You can look online if you want more information. It's kind of touristic now, not what was it in the sixties.
We were also there with Nick, a new zealand guy who share the same dorm at the guest house. Super cool to meet someone from Nz (I traveled there 2 years ago) .
First thought of the day : I just realise that I'm in India, this crazy big country and we are already in november. But days, months mean nothing when you're travelling.
I still try to adapt myself to India. In the room it's fresh because of the air conditioner. But when I go outside after a sweet night, around 8am, It's already very warm. I can directly hear the noise of the streets.. You don't have 5 seconds without horn (klaxon). I feel confused because I wanna stay in my bed and forget this outside life but also face it and visit everything in Puducherry. That's what I just decided. Under this sun, every step looks exhausted.. I close my eyes, take a deep breathe and jump in this local bus to arrive in town. After 15 min, I'm in the middle of the jungle.. oups.. city. I can't stay few seconds without moving because of the trafic. Cars, bikes, tuktuk, bus are everywhere. I really mean it. On the side on the road you see people walking, working in some local food stand, shops and staff like that. After looking my map, after to many people, We finally found Arulmigu Manakula Vinayagar temple and his ashram.
They bring everyday this elephant. I don't really know if it's more an attraction for people, locals like tourists than something religious. I felt bad for him..
We met there an indian guy who studies french language. He could speak quite good and show us Bharati Government Park, a garden to rest a bit and had food at "Le café des arts" , french break. It was a nice moment !
After that, Seb and me walked on seaside promenade, evening time and it was relaxing. Locals look also calm there.
Yesterday, 5th of november (Happy bday Mum), we left Auroville to go to Chidambaram which is down south. First let's talk about the bus. When you arrive at the station you never know which bus you have to take even if you know the number because there are so many of them and the direction is mainly writen in tamoul. So you ask to a driver and he send you to a place and you feel that it's not the good one. And you're right ! So you ask to other people, and after few minutes walking around and a lot of patience you are finally in the good one.. hopefuly..
At the bus station there are many stands where you can buy Chai Tea (the best! Less than 1$), water and food.
The food you find is always fried : samosa, beignets, peanuts.. which is nice but fat ! And Indian are eating it all day long, piece by piece..
I try so eat fruits : yummy banana and orange, bad apples.. (more expensive of course)
*People , book guide, tell you to not eat meat but one of the best and favorite meal is chicken Tandoori, and It's so good. I haven't been sick for the moment.
*They also say that it's difficult when you are a woman because of the look of guys. Of course you are white, you don't work but just travel and you don't wear a "sari" (local clothes). It's quite normal that people pay attention to you. But the bad thing is that most of the time you don't really know the meaning of their look. Are they choked to see me? Are they confused? Or maybe they just don't care..
*Nobody try to touch me in the bus and if you're scared you can sit on the left side, more for women. But I realised something after few days, none of them (men) wanted to sit next to me ! Am I stinky ? No, I'm just a woman.. religious thing
Anyway , Second thing : When we arrived in Chidambaram around 1pm, we had to find a place to sleep and drop our backpack. We actually booked nothing because we didn't really know our plans. We were walking in the noisy main street, under this crazy sun, could smell nice pollution and rubish, when I visited a room for the 3 of us. I just laughed when I came in. I'm really not difficult but It was bad : dirty wall it's quite okay but disgusting matress and dust everywhere - no way ! Even if it was just 5$
We finally found an other one which was not pretty at all and not clean enought but was okay for 3 people and for 10$ a night.
We wanted to visit the main hindou temple of the city Nataraja but it opens at 4pm. So we took an other bus and went to Pichavaram (half an hour) and had a lift from a pick up to go until the boat station.
Why there? To see one of the biggest mangrove in the world.
We rent a raw boat with a indian couple and their baby from North India and spent 2h on it. Was quiet, relaxing & we enjoyed the fresh air!
After this sweet trip, we came hack by bus again until Chidambaram and went around 5pm to the temple.
Tired !India is exhausting...
7/10. With the bus, you never know when you will arrive even if you looked before on google maps.
So after 5 hours we were in Trichy, big city famous for its temples. We took a tuk tuk with a weird driver at the bus stand because he knew a good hostel. The first room we visited was terrible.. the second one was okay but quite expensive for the price. There was also just a double bed and we were 3.. (what the fuck?). We asked for a extra bed but they could just bring us one more pillow.. We had to pay much more for a 3 beds room. We were so tired to deal with them + they didn't speak english.. Nice! So let's share a bed for 3, sleep in the other way of the matress..
They were supposed to have the wifi, nothing ! Oh I forgot to tell you that the receptionnist didn't pay attention to me, just the guys! Welcome in Trichy !
It was around 4/5pm when we went to the rock temple, good place with nice city view.
We walked half an hour there in the middle of a muslim meeting. I was lucky to have a scarf to put it quickly on my head and closed my jean shirt. For the first time in India, I felt very unconfortable and so hot..
The roads were busy and smelly. More than usual. I had to say that at this moment I hated India so much and I wanted to come back straight in Sri Lanka.
But I calmed down my mind and took again a big breathe of polluated air.
The night in the room was okay even if it was super warm..
8/10 . This morning we went to Sri Ranganathaswamy temple, one of the biggest in India. Was good but some sanctuaries are not allowed to foreigners (that's normal) but you feel that you're missing the most beautiful places. In front of every temples in India you have a "bazar", lot of people try to send you things like neckless, souvenirs, food.. sometimes It makes you crazy. I'm working on my patience here.
Today, It's been just one week in Tamil Nady and I can't say that I like India for the moment, not this part... I hope I could change my opinion later..
Sometimes, after a long day travelling around the city, I just wanna cry but I don't. I have to be strong. After 2 months here, I'll be a rock.
After visited the temple in Trichy in the morning, we took a bus to go to Thanjavur to see the Brihadishwara temple built by king Rajaraja.
Tamil Nadu is full of temples..
The bus drop us next to the train station and we already found a hotel, one double bed again but with one more matress! We walked 30 min to go to this amazing temple. And the city was better than Tricky. Locals look a bit more friendly even if it's not enough for us..
Where is the smile ?
Ps: sorry for my broken english and thx for following me! Xx
Kanyakumari : we spent 2 night there in a nice hostel. We needed a rest. Plus, it was very cloudy and my belly felt bad. The city is small ! It changes.. and full of indian tourist !
When you try to be relax in India you can't.. We learnt about a money operation in India the night before it happened. They decided to stop the 500 et 1000 rp (quite like 5 & 10 euros) and we had just a bit of change. The morning after all the banks were closed to prepare 100rp change for everybody. It was the day after, before taking our train to Varkala in Kerala that we could changed some of our bank notes after waiting, filling forms and doing copy of visa, passport.. indians are crazy, if you don't impose yourself in the bank, everybody steal your place. Anyway it's okay now. We also said goodbye to Daniel who went in an other city. 10 days traveling with him were great ! Such a nice guy !
10/11 around 6pm. We arrived in Varkala in a nice backpacker "Shiva Garden" at the top of a hill, next to the beach view. It's really strange to be in this city because it's a touristic one. Full of hostels, shops and restaurant. And white people ! And the night, it's super quiet ! So different to every places we already visited in Tamil Nadu ! Welcome in Kerala ! Every guest house has her yoga teacher and ayurvedic center, which is cool but made for tourist.. a local told us that it was better to do it in a small city or in an ashram, more trustful..
We spent the day after visiting the coast around, walking to see few beaches. Some of them are empty and their guest house also. It's weird to see that tourists are focus in one part of Varkala.
We arrived in Amrita Ashram where 3000 people live in a kind of community. Amma is their spiritual guide who wasn't here but in Europe. She's very famous. She is travelling a lot because of her ONG and give the darshan (hug to confort sad people). Volunteers spend days around meditation, yoga, work, blessing... Which is a life choice. And I try to put myself in, but I guess my spirit is not open mind enough. I felt a bit opressed after just 2 nights. I met Chloe from south of England & she felt the same.
On monday 14th, I decided to move alone because Sebastien wanted to stay longer. I took a train to go north until Allepey! And I felt good to be on my own.
I arrived around 1pm at the train station & had to go until the city center. So many auto drivers try to pick me up but I walked straight to a small local bus and went for free because It was too full until the town.
I started to walk looking for a guest room I saw online the night before. I asked my way to an indian guy who was working in an internet shop, called Sinju.
He told me about his cousin who just opened a guestroom next to the lake, 3km out of the town. For 2 euros the night ! After few min, his cousin, Dinesh, came on a bike. The first feeling I had when I saw him was really good. He started to explain me with his small english the home stay and wanted me to see the rooms. Si let's do it ! I jumped on his bike with my backpack and decided to trust them.
We arrived in his place by a very small "earthroad" , lake side and It looked amazing ! Cosy & so peaceful.
I was the first guest !
At the end of the afternoon, I went on a small boat to have a trip on the backwaters, where locals transport rice. Dinesh arranged me a good price with this family who is living next to the guest house. It was nice !
When I came back we drank a chai tea and started to talk about life, work.. And I found a name for his hostel : Peaceful Lake. I told him some ideas to fix the garden (plants, tables, hommacs..) but his place is almost ready for the high season.
I learnt that 2 english guys came before and booked a room also. I met them after and we started together a chillin night : Sam, Lee, Dinesh, Sinju, Sujith (their friend who was cooking yummy dossa/crepe for us) & me.
We spent a friendly moment ! The english guys have been already travelling a lot in south america, caraibean, australia, new zealand.. and it was so interesting to listen their stories !
I was supposed to stay one night but I add one more to help Dinesh.
Tuesday 15th, we went to the beach by bike, had a look around the city and I created him a gmail address & did a request of his guest room on Trip advisor ! Now, he has to wait few days for an answer.
Still this money trouble in India, ATM bank full of people.
I left Allepey at noon to Fort Cochi. I can't spend more than 3 days in a place if I want too see everything I planned. Especially because transport take you a lot of time..
Goodbye was sad.. it was a pleasure to be with this guys.
I'll remember our talks.
- Dinesh: you're my lucky guest, my friend, happy to meet you. Are you happy ?
- Me: yes I'm very happy to be here and to meet you guys!
-Dinesh: and are you happy everyday to travel in India?
-Me: yes India is an interesting country even if it's not easy sometimes. I start to miss my family, my husband (I'm married since 2 years here, such a joke but we never know), my friends.. but I met good people here, and I think you are a good person!
-Dinesh: thank you. Life is not easy for us everyday because of money. We never know for the days after.."
When you come back in Allepey?
-Me: I don't really know.. one day to see you again!
So if you are going to Allepey ask for Beautiful Lake, next to Lemon Juice & you will not be disappointed by Dinesh's hospitality, at all ! Thank you for bring me smile.
I arrived by bus on wednersday in Fort Kochi and walked straight to Happy Camper backpacker. I booked a bed there for 2 nights in a dormitory. When I came in the room I met Laina from Canada. We started to talk and had a very nice feeling. All the others beds were booked but nobody was here for the moment. We decided to walk in town together and started to talk to know each other.
Kochi is famous for the Chinese Net, suspendedin the mid air all along the coast. The nets are set up on bamboo or teak poles and are basically fixed land installation.
After we came back at the backpacker and met the rest of the people from different countries : Australia, Northway, America, Spain, England, Switserland, Germany and one guy, Patrice from Guadeloupe!! A caraibean island where my mum lives. We were so surprised and happy to talk about this place.
We had a small party on the rooftop, everybody was really nice and interesting.
I spent the day after with Laina chilling around the city. He had a strange deal with a tuk tuk driver : free lift around an area against visit some shops (you don't have to buy anything just have a look) and the driver receive free petrol. We realised that It's was black money... India.. Anyway , was fun.
After we came to Ernakulam train station to book a sleeper class ticket for friday 18th.
Then sunset and listen Chain, an australian guy playing guitar and Laina singing.
We had a yummy meal (prawns coconut and fish curry) in a restaurant in the evening. I spent my last day before my train at 6pm with Patrice (from Guadeloupe) and Seb that I met again there.
You don't have a lot of things to do in Fort Kochi but It's a really nice place to relax and meet people. I recommend Happy Camper for sure !
So I went to the ferry boat in the afternoon to Ernakulam and met Jerin on my way to the train station. He lives just next to it so he decided to show me where I have to wait my train to Bangalore and stayed with me until the train came. He even showed me exactly my seat/bed ! Such a nice guy.
He has his own tourism business and travel a lot around India. We normaly have to meet each other in Gokarna in few days.
The train was full of men. I was thinking if something bad happens to me in India it's probably now. But It was safe and everybody slept at 9pm.
I woke up almost every hour to watch my bags and because It was cold out there, the windows were open.
At 5am people started to wake up and maybe every 1 minute, two guys were coming , asking louder : chai tea, chai tea x1000 and same for coffee. It was really annoying! I was still so tired and had to wait 2 hours until Bengalore city.
After few minuts, I fall asleep again, very deep sleep because when I woke up at 7am, the train was almost empty. I pannic and asked to someone if I did miss the station. Lucky me, it was the next one. I just had time to go to the bathroom, take my bag and go out with a very sleepy face.
Bengalore is a big city and I didn't feel spend time there and wanted to go straight to Hampi. I had to see Siddhart there, the indian student in journalism that I met on my first night in India (Chennai). I told him that we could have breakfast together before catching my bus to Hampi.
We did it ! He came to pick me up at the train station by bike. It was a bit hard to find each other because I don't have a local number but I borrowed a phone to call him. Good timing, I saw him 2 min after.
We had a yum indian beakfast and drop me at the bus station. So cool !
After 12 hours of train, 9 of bus, I arrived "in the middle of nowhere" : HAMPI.
So many things to tell about this place ! Old capitale of Vijayaganara's kingdom .
It's magic everywhere on 42km² of ruines and temples.
I dedicate this article to Harsh Patidar :
"I went early morning to watch the sunrise on Matanga Hill and I met you there.
We started to talk and had a friendly feeling. I told you that I wanted to visit Hampi by bicycle on my own, not following Tuktuk drivers, groups or guides, and you felt the same. After a nice breakfast together we were on the bicycle .
More we moved more the lanscape was amazing. I felt like a children discovering new things, I think you as well.
You told me about your studies, your life generally and I started to share mine also. I though that you looked like a really nice person.
We took this tiny boat full of people and bikes to join the other side of the river, drive few km and climbeb 756 steps to watch Monkey temple view. It was hot but the view was impressive.
We had a yummy indian meal in the afternoon. We deserved it.
We kept going after until 6pm, almost 9 hours on the bicycle. Well done to us !
And we had a nice sunset before you left the place.. I was really sad to tell you goodbye. I realised that's why I'm traveling also than discover places. Meet people like you from other country and spend amazing moments with.
Thank you for this day and funny&great time.
The day after you left, I went to the other side of the river to spend the night and met some travelers from Israel, England and spain and climbed rocks and walked until this beautiful lake together. It was amazing again.
I will always remember what you wrote me in your mail :
One thing I understood after meeting you is that people around the globe are same at the heart. The only difference is cultural.
See you soon hopefuly"
*India by local bus :
The travelers I met are surprised when I told them that it's my way to travel here. I book nothing just go to the bus stand, there are always a lot of bus.
I think It's the best to know the country. I'm just watching through the window and look everything. Life in India.
We drive on shitty roads sometimes but drivers are professional. They avoid cows, goat, bikes, tuk tuk, cars..
They have to be focus on the road. They do well.
*Since I'm travelling alone, I'm always the only white person in the bus. And I have to sit at the front next to the guy who sell the tickets. Because It's like in Sri Lanka, 2 people are working. And I feel kind of safe to have my proper seat.
*I also feel the look of locals : surprised, curious, joked, kind.. the more friendly are those parents holding their babies or children showing them my face and saying hello with their hands. Very sweet.
The most unconfortable is to arrive in a bus station & realise that everybody fix me.. especially young people.
But I keep the smile and after some of them are smiling as well. Or when I'm tired I close my eyes and don't pay attention.
*In the bus, when a baby or a kid cry for "nothing", they have a slap. No caprice!
What is really painful is the poverty especially out of the big cities.
Slums, tents, wood houses, people sitting on the grass drinking tea, kids running after animals..
*A lot of agricultural work : rice,corn, vegetables, milk, sold after on market or bazar.
Manuel work also : mecanic staff from nothing, crafts, food
*Sometimes I feel the pain in people's eyes, tiredness, hope. Jealousy perharps.
I can feel the money influence, importance in the society.. business : nothing is free.
The image on social networks : take a picture with a white skin and show yourself online.
This country is full of contrast but brings you something special! Incredible India...
Break in Gokarna & Palolem..
I spent 2 nights in each place.
Gokarna is a lovely town with few beaches you find alongside of the hills. I stayed in Om Beach, in the dolphin house where I met quite a lot of people.
I'll remember Patrick, a french old guy who comes here since 8 years for 6 months.. just chilling. Like John from Scotland. It's a kind of retreat for them. One funny guy from Bulgaria who lived 9 years in London.. and others travelers..
It's a lazy place , perfect for holidays. You feel out of everything. But It's also a kind of trap !
I had to move to Palolem up north (2h by train) in Goa State on thursday 24th to see Lee & Sam, the 2 english guys I met in Allepey. It was Lee 's birthday. Palolem is also a small town with beaches. More touristic than Gokarna & you can find a lot of tourist shops.
Was nice to catch these guys again. We rent a kayak to watch the sunset & saw dolphins!
The last night there, Lee had his flight back to England :( and I met some indians and they invited me for dinner in the restaurant of the guest house. A married couple with a baby. The husband is web designer and she's working for google. There were also the wife's little brother and 2 friends of the husband (20 years of friendship). They were very nice and happy to spend time with me. It was the week-end for them. They ordered a lot of local food. I was full but they kept me eating. Sam joined us after. And they didn't want us to pay for anything
Now I'm in a small village called Keri on the southtern most coast of Goa for a volunteering since saturday. Mandy, an english woman bought a guest house few years ago and now she's renovating the place with her son, Laurence.
I'm helping them 5 hours a day against the accommodation and food.
The most of the job is painting, cleaning, sanding tables, fixing things.
They want to be able to rent upstair (2 rooms, one bathroom, one big living room & kitchen, 2 balconies) for Christmas (for a family).
There is Keri beach 15 min walking from the house
and Arambol, a bigger town 20 min by bus. Arambol is very touristic because of the beach, yoga, medidation, party, music. A lot of people live here half a year. Every sunset on the beach you have a drum circle. Few people are playing and lot of them are dancing, it's really nice ! And every night there is a live band or open mic in one of the bars on the same beach.
I don't really feel in India even if a lot of locals come here as well. This area looks more like an european place where foreigners escape and enjoy to be out of their country. I don't have the wifi often so that's normal if I'm not writing a lot on the blog. Everything is alright ! Just start to miss few people from France..
See you !
I arrived in this quiet village by bus & I didn't know what to expect. I started to walk and follow the itinerary that Laurie wrote me to find the house. I straight met Laurie's mother, Mandy, on the road and I jumped on her scooter. My first impression of the place was : wow that's lovely.
I wish I could stay longer in this volunteering but I have to keep traveling in India. One month left already...
Dear Mandy it was friendly to stay in your place and help you renovating your guest house. Thanks you for the hospitality. I will always remember your laught, open mind & all of your stories about your life & travels. You are a strong & generous person with a big heart. "English mum in India".
Dear Laurie, thanks for sharing moments and the yoga as well. My body & my mind really enjoyed it. We had so much fun & hilarious laught. You are very interesting through your personality & experience. I hope we could catch each other in France, England or somewhere else.
I wish you both the best for the guest house & that this crazy money situation in India will be better soon. If I'm coming back in Goa one day I will visit you for sure.
Dear Sion, was cool to be volunteer with you for one week. I really liked the sunday we spent on the other side of the river, Aronda & Redi, when we rent this scooter
We both fell in love with Redi fort
& Redi beach, amazing places.
Happy travels to you !
Today It's the 9th of december, 8am, and I just arrived in Pune with a night bus. Not easy to sleep in a sitting & non AC bus but it was the cheapest. It was noisy & very windy. Pune is a big city next to Bombay. I'm here because Harsh, the indian guy I met in Hampi (ref.Article) invited me to his place for the week-end. Plus, Pune is on my way to Rajasthan ! I met Sanaullah in the bus who is working in an IT center and he proposed me to come to have free wifi. I have to wait the evening to meet Harsh because he is working so I'm gonna spend the day with Sanaullah.
More I discover India more I love it. Everything is so different from the places I've been traveling which make this country incredible. Even if sometimes It's not easy to be a woman here, It's such a good trip. I understand now why travelers come back here. Too many places to visit with sweet locals !
Pune is the second largest city of Maharashtra State with 3,75 million of people. The city is known for culture, traditional old economy base, industry, IT... and attracts a lot of students from all over India.
I arrived there on friday 9th early morning and spent the all day with Sanaullah, a very friendly indian. He saw that I was sleepy and lost when the bus dropped us. I had no idea where I was & what to do. He brang me to his office, then we had a local breakfast. I met his boss when I was using the wifi, friendy as well.
Then I joined him on his bike to post some papers & big boxes. And he drove me after to his flat & told me that I could stay here & have a rest (2 or 3 hours sleeping in the bus) and came back to his office. I knew him for few hours & he gave me the best hospitality ever. I'm still surprised how some people can be kind with foreigners.
After his work we had dinner & he called his taxi driver friend who gave me a cheap lift until the city center to meet Harsh.
It was 10pm when I arrived in front of the german bakery, the meeting place Harsh chose. He was not here. I started to pannic a little bit.. alone in a big city the night.. A old tuk tuk driver in the street asked me if I needed a lift, I explained him the situation. I borrowed his phone to call Harsh who was on his way, late because of indian roads.. I felt better & could wait with the driver until Harsh arrived.
I was really happy when I finally saw his face ! He was so sorry to be late but I didn't care, was too happy to see him !
I jumped on his bike (I realise that I'm often a passenger bike & I enjoy it) & we went to his flat he share with 5 others friends, out of the city. It was quite late when we arrived. We talked, watched Harry Potter 5 (international movies) & fell asleep like big shit !
On saturday we visited Shanivaar Wada Fort from outside, then Osho garden which was peaceful. By the way, Osho is a spiritual teacher & founded Osho international meditation resort, one of the world's largest spiritual center with 200,000 visitors annually..
On sunday we went to the Katraj Zoo, one of the famous indian activity. It was full of people. Harsh, like me, doesn't really like to see this animals life but it's part of Pune ! We saw snakes, turtles, white tigers, leopards, dears...
After, we had a late lunch to the most famous restaurant of Pune : Vaishali, on FC road. Indian food is unbelievable ! Then we came home and chilled (Ace Ventura movie).
On monday, we visited Singhgad Fort, 30 km from Pune, an amazing place.
More we droved there, more I couldn't stop thinking : wow that's so beautiful !
One of the best places I've seen in India !
Our indian lunch after ("veg kadai, dal fry & naans") plus our bakery stop ("malai barfi, ras malai, moti chuv ka Laddu, chocolate barfi") were delicious.
We watched the sunset next to Harsh flat !
After this lovely day, Harsh dropped me at the bus station around 11pm.. night bus to Aurangabad.
*Harsh, thank you again for your hospitality, sweetness and kindness. I loved this week-end with you & the fact that you shared me your culture. It was very sad again to leave you , I wish you could come traveling with me for the rest of my trip.. I'm not gonna repeat here what I already told you when I left Pune. I hope to see you again in India, Africa, France or Grece ^^ ! Take care, lots of love, will miss you*
Tuesday 13th, 6 am.
I arrived in Aurangabad by bus. The driver and his friend offered me a Chai Tea (this tea is a drug). Then I went directly to the hostel Family Inn to drop by bag & have few more hours sleep. Hard to have a proper sleep in an indian bus because the roads are winding.
Around 10 am, I woke up & decided to visit the city.
- Panchakki also known as the water mill, takes its name from the mill which used to grind grain for the pilgrims.
- Bibi Ka Maqbara, a beautiful mosque that people call Mini Taj Mahal as well.
- The caves
- And Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj about the great Maratha ruler.
I left the hostel to spend the day in Ellora, famous for the caves, 30 km from Aurangabad. It's one of the largest rock-cut monastery-temple caves complexes in the world, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Maharashtra, India. The site presents monuments and artwork of Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism from the 600-1000 CE period. The site features over 100 caves, of which 34 caves are open to public. These were excavated out of the vertical basalt cliff in the Charanandri hills. These consist of 12 Buddhist (caves 1–12), 17 Hindu (caves 13–29) and 5 Jain (caves 30–34) caves.
I started to visit the caves at 9 am & finished around 2pm. It was just unbelievable.. I felt like an adventurer, explorer. Made me thinking a lot about religion and history.. How can people build something like that ?There were a lot of indians tourists & I don't know how many selfies I did but more than 20.. Annoying at the end. After this day trip, I came back to Aurangabad because I booked a night bus there to reach Indore the morning after & take a train there until Udaipur, in Rajasthan State. But nothing happened as I wanted...
At 7pm, I was in this sleeping bus, laying down on my ''bed'' writing my book. Few hours after I finally fall asleep after this exhausted day. I had my small bag next to me & curtains closed. When I woke up around 1 am, my bag was gone. I thought first that it fell so I started to look everywhere until admit myself that someone stole my bag. I woke up everybody & asked to a young indian guy, Pratik, if someone left the bus on the way. He went to talk to the driver & 3 guys left the bus the stop before...The driver stopped the bus to a police station & a cop had a look in but I knew that I would not see my bag again : passport, wallet, tablet, phone, books. My mind was fucked up & I started to cry. Pratik's parents try to comfort me and gave me a phone to call someone. I couldn't call in France & nobody could help me from there so I called Harsh who picked up straight the phone & I explained him the situation.
- Don't worry I have some friends in Indore, they will bring you to the police station. I'm gonna look online for your passport.
- It's a nightmare.. I have nothing on me anymore..
I had to wait 4 hours to arrive in Indore city. Of course I couldn't sleep anymore so I try to think positively but all I was thinking was : You are in a big shit now, you don't have an ID, no money & maybe you will have to come back in France. The idea to stop my trip now just frightened me. I spent the all thursday in Police stations with Harsh's friends try to have a bloody police report. It was really frustrated because everybody was speaking Hindi & I really understood nothing about what was going on. They actually didn't want to give me the paper because it happened one the way to Indore & not in the city itself. I wanted to scream, to through everything around me.. Harsh called me all day long on his friend's phone to try to explain me the situation.- I booked you a sleeping bus tonight to Bombay, the french ambassy is there. You will reach in the morning, I'll be there to pick up you & we will go together by bike to the ambassy. Thanks god.. Harsh, you are my fucking saver .
Friday 16th, 7 am.
I arrived in Mumbai & was happy to see his face. We dropped my bag to one of his friend's flat & went to the ambassy. Good news : A new one year passport will be ready this week... Phhew
After, he spent the day taking care of my report, on the phone, printing & sending papers between cops & bus company.. He's got a journalist friend who published an article about my case like what the police was not helpful and it moved their ass.
We spent the night in Bombay and drove around the south, the fency part of the city. Was lovely. Now we are in Harsh's flat in Pune waiting for the passport & taking care of papers shit. Yesterday we finally received police report from Indore . No more cash in Western Union bank because of gouvernment, money situation.. Thanks paypal..
This last days were full of stress & emotions but you always feel better the morning after a nightmare.
If everything goes well, I'll be in Rajasthan this week end for Xmas, my birthday & new year .
The pictures I put on this article are not mine.. I wish I could show us all the beautiful photos I took in Aurangabad & Ellora.. anyway..
India makes me really mad even if I like the country..
See you guys :)
Christmas Week-end !!
I arrived on saturday morning by sleeper bus from Bombay, after collected my new passport at the french ambassy.
First impression : It's cold. The city is quite big but the roads are small so there is a lot of trafic. Every street has food and a lot of handmade shops (bags, clothes, jells) - impressive work.
I escaped the tuk tuk driver & went straight to Pleasure Guest House, in the city center, recommended by travelers friends.
I met the owner Getu, a very friendly & welcoming person. When he was young, he used to work in a hotel like a cooker, cleaner, learning from old people. That's how he knows how to manage a guest house. He learned english in the market by talking with foreigners. Funny stories :
- where are you from ? - Hungary ! - Hungry ? Are you hungry ?
- I'm from Chile ! - Chili spice ?
I felt good vibrations in his place especially on the rooftop.
He showed me one hour after I arrived how to cook a local breakfast with Rohi: Paluparata. * * Future article about indian food soon
Rohi is a children from a village around Udaipur who is working with Getu. He is teaching him his experience. They have a special link like son & father.
Getu uses to go to Pippliah village, 30 km from the city to brings biscuits to kids, visit people. He proposed me to come with him & his tuk tuk driver friend. Good thing to do on a christmas day..
Going to this village was an emotional experience for me.
They are all working very hard outside since their young age.
I've never seen such smiling faces for this kind of living conditions. Shining people. . . I felt completely in an other life & ashame to just bring biscuits & a bit of money.. but who I am to change the world ?
After this day, we came back to the guest house & cooked Chicken Massala for xmas dinner. Getu is a nice cooker & the way he uses spices is interesting & tasty.
He teached me recipes. I also made a Mojito Bucket. We spent a nice evening the 3 of us. Fireworks from the rooftop !
25th of december. I woke up slowly with the sun. That was my outside bed for 2 euros the night. No more credit card = Small budget.
I had a crazy morning Christmas drink : shanti shanti !
Sunny sunday for a walk around the city. Locals here like to talk with foreigners. I didn't walk 5 minuts without talking with someone or having a chai tea in a shop, coffee. It's a good exchange with people.
After had a look in those small streets, I went by bike with Getu to Tiger Lake, 9 km far. Beautiful place !
Udaipur is surrounded by lakes & mountains, that make the city pretty & romantic. Famous for Indians tourist & travelers.
Watch the sunset from Karti mata temple. You can go to the top of the mountain by rope way but I chose to go there by walk (1h).
On the way back to the guest house, I enjoyed walking in the streets, smelling food, looking shops, talking with people. I had a spice tasting in Ronak Shop with friendly locals. Spice art !