Bloody hell i am so tired all the time. Its the heat. Whilst i hear that Essex is bathing in a balmy 6 degrees we are melting in 36 degrees. Huge storm last night another later tonight. Day time however brilliant sunshine and clear blue skies.
Train travel from Varkala to Cochin took 3.5 hours on train with a load of med students. Nice lads let us camp on their reserved seats. Trains run slowly here as the actual journey was only 100 miles.
Arrive Cochin about 2.30pm and get 420 Rupee Rickshaw to the Homestay hostel. On metre it would have been about 280 Rupees but luckily i had gone to a taxi stall and successfully negotiated the higher rate before we got on.
Homestay place is good. When we were first shown our room we thought we were in reception as the bedroom was round the corner. For a reception it was a bit cramped but clean and tidy with three piece suite and big telly in a wall unit. Consequently we were a little dismissive when pushed as to whether we liked it. It was only when he gave us the key and pointed out the sleeping area that we understood it was all part of our room which cost £12 a night inc ensuite as well. Whoops!
Siyad (mein host) is lovely. Softly spoken, nice smile, good English and honest (i don't trust him. He is too nice). After a shower we ask where a nearby restaurant could be found. He took us himself. It was great food and good price (Urrm). This morning we asked about breakfast and were taken to another equally good restaurant in his own rickshaw which was also good . He joined us, at my invitation (ha ha this is where i get stung, i thought) No. He had the cheapest on the menu....I don't trust him still. Oh my he is wilely, this one. He took us for a tour of the town for three hours in his rickshaw. Went to spice shop, beach, Dhobikhana (large manual laundering service) where 40 familiies ply their soapy trade hand washing clohes in large partially submerged concrete cubicles then hang them out to dry in a huge compound before being ironed with large heavy charcoal irons. We then visited a church, a museum and saw the canilevered chinese fishing nets in action near the port. That Indian devil charged nothing and even gave us a complimentary beer !!!! Oh yeah! Heeven took us to one shop which he said to be careful and say no in as it would be a hard sell. He said once we had been in he would tell us the secret of the shop. Here it comes I thought. it's ran by pirates and we will be kidnapped!...It wasn't ran by pirates. I don't think so anyway, because when we came out he gave me a hundred Rupee note and a chitty which he received for him taking us there. AAARRRRGGGHHHH! You Bastard! Undermining my natuaral suspicion of the human race like this!! Oh and the final straw. Just now he has suggested we buy some fish and he will give us a free cooking lesson tonight and has booked a kerala back water tour for tomorrow at a fraction of the cost we were expecting to pay. How can you trust someone like that huh? How can you!!!!!!???
Siyad at Tantraa Homestay Bishop Gardens Lane No 2, Cochin. Be warned travellers!!! pics on gallery