Do you remember how I once went to India some time ago? And how I promised for the following month to put the second part of the pictures up?
"WELL SEE THEM NOW!"
Annie also rightly pointed out I hadn't given any useful information about where I went, so hopefully I'll rectify this now as well.
I tried to do one of those fancy web 2.0 maps which graphically shows where you've been. Only I couldn't make it work. So I haven't. Soz.
So! The tenuous excuse for going was that my Bezzy Mate Lady Donna's sister and her boyf were teaching in a school in Chennai, which we flew in and out of. Chennai looked, well, a bit hectic.
Luckily, when we arrived our hosts were on their holibobs too, so we caught an overnight train (an experience in itself - and something I thought I would never tick off the list of things I really wanted to do). to Varkala. Varkala is very western, to the point where Indian locals get kicked off the tourist bit of the beach. I'm not very comfortable with that kind of thing, but it was a nice gentle introduction to the country.
Then we headed into the Keralan backwaters to spend New Year's Eve, before heading up into the hills between Kerala and Tamil Nadu for jungles, beasties and trekking.
We went to Fort Cochin, for a bit of cultuchaa, then Thanjavur for some amaaaaaazing temples. Felt like Indiana Jones and Lara Croft. Only without breaking things. Pondicherry, which really does feel French, and more beach stuff before jetting back out of Chennai.... Bliss....
I showed my parental units the pictures last weekend. My mum said of the last one below, "It looks just like Berkshire."
TO CONCLUDE; Boz's quick summary of India:
1. Yes, it is hot..
2. All the people we met were Super Lovely.
3. The South seems 'a bit more chilled out' than the North.
4. Going there for a beach holiday seems like a bit of a waste. Although those bits were nice too.
5. It is still very cheap, but getting a bit more expensive.
6. I liked the temples best.
7. Go, if you get the chance. And if you like that sort of thing.
8. Remember that the sun is stronger at altitude. Ow..