Munnar – God’s Own City

And we started our day by taking a ferry trip from Fort Cochin to the main city experiencing an enchanting encounter with an amazing sunset.

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We picked our third partner in crime, Carmen, from the Cochin Airport and headed straight for Munnar.

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It’s a surreal place, incredible Panaromas, breathless aura and a memorable story to remember.

We hired a tuk-tuk rickshaw to go around Munnar. The main highlight of the trip was an Elephant ride along a tea estate.

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We also did trespass on a private properly just to witness the awesomeness of Tea gardens ;)

And to end this awe-inspiring day, we entered our cozy beds to watch a movie marathon of Golden Compass, Insidious and Indiana Jones.

An incredible day ro remember but I have a feeling, we have some sheer awesomeness lined up ahead.

(apologies for the lack of adjectives but it’s almost impossible to write a blog post while standing in this lobby, that too in shorts and shivering as hell)

Until tomorrow :)

They have a problem with Selfies – God’s Own Country #3

So today I woke up to the tune my national anthem which was being at the school next door (which was indeed a perfect welcome). Minutes later Paddy was here.

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We spent an entire day walking around Fort Kochi and taking amazing videos, pictures and timelapse shots on the GoPro.
I almost got a video of two snakes mating in a pond full of beautiful fishes.

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Few Exciting things to do at Fort Kochi:(that we did in a day)
1. Fort Kochi Beach
2. Chinese Fish nets
3. Sea food
4. Synagogue
5. Museums (police, palace etc)
6. Jew Street (Spices market)
7. Dutch Museusm (cemetary)

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And I did piss some trolls on Facebook by posting some Selfies from my GoPro but please go ahead and be all Suicidal about it!

They have a problem with Selfies – God’s Own Country #3

So today I woke up to the tune my national anthem which was being at the school next door (which was indeed a perfect welcome). Minutes later Paddy was here.

image

We spent an entire day walking around Fort Kochi and taking amazing videos, pictures and timelapse shots on the GoPro.
I almost got a video of two snakes mating in a pond full of beautiful fishes.

image

Few Exciting things to do at Fort Kochi:(that we did in a day)
1. Fort Kochi Beach
2. Chinese Fish nets
3. Sea food
4. Synagogue
5. Museums (police, palace etc)
6. Jew Street (Spices market)
7. Dutch Museusm (cemetary)

image

And I did piss some trolls on Facebook by posting some Selfies from my GoPro but please go ahead and be all Suicidal about it!

And It’s all Sorted – God’s Own Country #2

Kerala Tourism posted a VIDEO  on their Facebook page on May 17th which was shared on my wall by a friend almost a week later; it took me less than a minute to concur, Summer holidays will be spent no where else but at the backwaters of Kerala.

Following is my plan in a screenshot – Kochi (Cochin), Munnar, Kumarakom — that’s pretty much about it.

Travel is here

 

Though this trip is going to be amazing trip because of it’s location (The State of Kerala, God’s Own Country) but it’s the people that will make this trip a legendary experience to remember.

In the coming days, I will be posting more about God’s Own Country: Kerala and it’s mother subcontinent: Incredible India.

You can also follow my Tumblr for some amazing Go-Pro Pictures: http://fortitude-choices.tumblr.com/

20th State – A Foreigner – God’s Own Country #1

Robert Louis Stevenson once wrote: There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.

Not sure if the above quote is valid for my next trip. I agree with “a traveler being the only foreign” but what if the traveler is traveling his own land, would you still call the traveler a foreign? And it gets trickier when traveling in/through India.

When I was a kid I wanted to travel through every city, every village in India – I Still do; I do understand it’s rather close to impossible to do the same ( at the moment) but now I at least hope to Discover the known in my own motherland. Travel; and not just travel to travel but to discover every state of India and to understand what they stand for.

Political Map of India (Wikipedia)

I have been to 19 states in India so far (living, traveling, exploring…) and next up is Kerala. Kerala is a happy state with the highest HDI (in the country) and a mind-blowing  literacy rate of 97.5% (highest too).

I wonder how people are like in the towns, in the villages; would they too smile at the silliest of moments and cry while watching emotional bollywood movies? Do they even watch bollywood movies? I hope they would smile when I pose with them for Selfies.

I always read Kerala’s history in books (during my education), saw documentaries online, “liked” Facebook posts from the “Kerala Tourism FB Page” but now I’m finally going to be there.

I’m EAGER to climb that coconut tree while it rains like crazy till I reach the pinnacle only to jump right into heart of the backwaters at this God’s Own Country, Kerala.

Jump Coconut

10 Travel Essentials (For Women) while Traveling to India.

If there was a dictionary called “Real Meanings” India would mean “Diversity” or well if a foodie was the author of the dictionary perhaps it would mean “The land of Masala Food“. India is many things and “many” enough that it cannot be generalized or stereotyped – FOR ANYTHING.

Let’s Talk Travel today: You can read about India at the  Incredible India website or simple Google “India Travel” to begin exploring the mammoth tourism dream land.

I will soon be traveling to Kerala: God’s Own Country for a summer week with friends; thought I should compile a list of 10 Travel essentials for Women traveling to India.

Kerala-Gods-own-Country

1. Carry Clothes that cover well: now I might just offend some women there when I say, “Carry Clothes that Cover”. As a a citizen of the country, I would not want my women to wear any more than what they feel like but the fact is not everyone thinks like you and I do. A 2-inch gap between your top and your jeans is “not proper” while a 5-inch gap between the Saree is perfectly fine | well it also depends on where you are, it’s fine to wear short clothes at beaches, river sides, tourist areas while it will be “not proper” to wear the same at a holy temple, village side, a school, public market or at a farmer’s yard.

2. Carry a Scarf: It’s always smart to carry a scarf in India; it will protect you from the unwanted sun’s wrath, the dusty winds and sometimes even the eyes of the undesired.

3. Carry a pack of Meds: It’s easy to find medicine of all kinds in India but it might be a little tricky to get the chemist to provide you the right find. Carry the common ones (For Fever, cold, stomach, Malaria etc) – Yes, Get ready for a bad stomach. Courtesy: The Real Masalas.

4. Travel Savvy not Fancy: India doesn’t really appreciate beauty pageant participants, Indians do (specially the blonde ones from The US). You might not wanna travel with those Gucci or Prada bags, rather keep it simple and buy a cotton bag from the market – Travel Light and Savvy — NOT FANCY.

5. Heels don’t make any sound: Yes, it’s true. Heels around here don’t make that “Tik Tok” sound, try wearing something light like an osho sandal to keep yourself comfortable.

6. A dumb phone: What’s the point of smart phone while you’re traveling eh? Try traveling with a light (Read as: Not so Expensive) phone as there’s a high probability of you losing it. Go for one of those Nokias, if needed. There’s Wifi/Cyber Cafe (to access internet) at almost every corner of India. (Don’t judge me on the Internet speed darling!!)

7. Sunscreen: Yes, Sunscreen. Get the best of the best from the market, we’re talking about India, the God of Sun was born here dude!

8. Pepper spray: I’m not saying it will be required but somethings are always good to carry.

9. An Indian Dress: Well, I’m sure you would wanna visit a marriage procession or go travel to a holy place (temple etc), make sure you carry an Indian dress than is suitable for such occasions. There’s nothing more awesome-r than winning a heart of a local by appreciating his/her culture.

10. Confidence:  No matter how bad you’re at Martial arts; you only need one little secret to survive India. CONFIDENCE. Be Confident about everything (approaching people, asking for help, renting a rickshaw) – Indians get the “peer pressure thing” from confident people. Be Cool and Polite but confident (and not mean/rude).

Hope these would help; India is a many countries in one and there’s a reason why our travel campaign is called “Discover India”.

Happy Discovering ;)

Do read Washinton Post’s They Don’t Call it God’s Own Country For Nothing. 

Espolianto: A Friday night!

Jump from a mountain so high that even death thinks twice before accompanying you. Dive in a river so deep where the flow has been stagnant since the day of it’s very inception. Kiss a girl who sell’s herself for money with so much love that she never attempts to see the light of those streets. Do one thing incredible that shakes the very existence of your core belief.

Drink up! Drink up really hard! Drink up so hard that even your vampire next door thinks twice before feeding on you. Cheat on someone, you’re too young to be loyal  but cheat only if it’s worth it. Strive for perfection; no body is perfect, your girl is.

Rob a bank; be that bank be the love of your family and that of your friends. Donate the extra currency, there are many lonely ones out there. Take your neighbor on a date, she always waits-up for you when you’re not home early.

Listen to Trap Music on one of those giant headphones. Remember to share the beats; start with your heart and then hers. Call for a cab late at night when you’re drunk and then randomly decide to walk home. Share your pizza with the Cabby uncle.

Smile. It’s free but don’t spend your smile at ratchet clubs; they will misuse it. Try playing guitar in the middle of the city street, if it doesn’t work out, try Harmonica. Stalk her on twitter, she might just be tweeting because she knows you’re reading.

Listen to the Song, Kabira on youtube and scribble a random blog post. Open your friend-list on whatsapp and invite everyone to party; do the same on WeChat, Tinder, OkCupid or whatever. Make sure you charge your phones; make sure you’re ready to dance because tonight; we’re Espolianto, we’re a Friday night!