Sunday, October 23, 2005

Cochin, adios

It's time to move on.

Cochin is a tourist spot. Especially in the fort area where I was staying, it's a classic tourist ghetto. Restaurants charge upwards of 100 rupees per meal. On the north end of the island, there are a bunch of chinese fishing nets (the main tourist attraction, which are quite nice). In the evening, there is a fish auction, and you can buy fresh fish there, and then take it to a beachfront restaurant which will then cook it for you.

I, instead, went into the muslim part of town, and found a nice restaurant that served an all-you-can-eat-meal for 12 rupees... and possibly the hottest sauce i've had so far. After complaining for the past few weeks about lack of spice, it was very pleasant to finally sweat, and then get the hiccups from chili power.. Awesome.

As always, the restaurant owners, and other diners were rather shocked to find me eating with them. They even went to the trouble to bring me a knife and fork, which I quickly tossed aside, and using my freshly washed right hand, began to scoop up rice like a local.

I developed an evening ritual here with the British lawyer that I met - we'd get a taxi to a government owned alcohol store, pick up a few bottles of beer each (wrapped in newspaper for discretionay purposes), and then headed to one of the beachside restaurants.. where we sat for a while, chatted, avoided buying anything, and then eventually had to run from the seemingly clockwork-like evening rain. At 9, or abouts, a massive quantity of water began to drop, forcing us to flee, he for his guesthouse, and me for an Internet cafe.

In the main village green, youths gather to play cricket.. and they take it very seriously. However, yesterday, I took my frisbee (which i'd yet to use on my travels), and threw it around. Pretty soon, about 5 kids ditched their cricket match, and started playing with me.

Another american guy showed up, seeing my bright orange frisbee - and together, managed to keep the kids entertained for over an hour, as they chased it across the green, eager to be the one to attempt to throw it back to us.

Today, i'm catching a 3pm bus eastwards (5 hours) up to the hill country, to one of the highest tea growing areas of India. It should be a bit colder up there, which might mean that I can escape the bastard mosquitoes for a few days.

Until tomorrow.

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