Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Promised Travel Report from India

Hi everyone who happens to drop by, and those who constantly follow me here. From a long detour i am back!

My trip to India was really stressful! That was in terms of real physical experiences. Imagine waiting at the KL departure area from 8pm to 8am! The check-in counters open 2.5h before the flight and that is consistently followed in KL, as i observed. I envy people who can sleep while sitting on the chairs, with periodic buzz from the sound system as a prelude to an incoming flight or a boarding call. I tried several times but did not succeed. I just equated it to a full night vigil, when relatives die waiting for interment. However, in my case i did not experience it when my father died. I only experience full night vigil when still working in the lab with hourly or bi-hourly monitoring of ACC production into ethylene. (Hello postharvest alumni, do you still remember this?).

From KL i went to Chennai then to Coimbatore. I stayed in a budget hotel there before an official car fetch me the following day to Ooty. A 2.5h delay is the time difference between Malaysia and India, so i slept most of my stay in Coimbatore. I just noticed the mosquitoes and baby cockroaches in the room the next morning when i saw the sting on my arms . I will not be elaborating related things here anymore, or i might not stop!

A typical passenger vehicle is a modified tricycle or 'tuktuk', which they call rickshaw. They said it is used all over India. It is a carriage built around a motorcycle, the driver in front while 4-5 passengers sit at the back (see picture at left).

The 3.5h travel by car to Ooty was good. Plenty of tamarind trees lined both sides of the streets, and a lot of people in their traditional dress did not mind the painful heat of the sun. I've never seen anybody using umbrella nor a fan to alleviate the intense heat. The undulating roads climbing the mountain to Ooty is wonderful, reminding me of Kennon road to Baguio City. Then the tea farms immediately loom in the background. I did not know that tea plants need partial shades which are obviously prunned despite of their heights. I did not see anyone prunning, but i cannot visualize if they are using ladders or climb the tall tress by foot. Another unusual entertainers which really fascinated me are monkeys playing on the roads, not on the roadsides. The drivers have to blow the horns to drive them to safety.

Our conference schedule continues until about 7pm so we looked around at night or in the morning before 8am. Bhaskar and i were able to visit the Rose Garden at sunrise and took pictures of different rose varieties. It was Archna and Polomi who took me to the top of Ooty the morning before we depart to Coimbatore. This place is near the Tea Museum and a hotel. Archna and I agreed to build our dream resort house in that area. I hope Archna will be very rich someday to materialize that dream. Peace and tranquility with lots of birds and wild flowers are all there. The yellows and violets carpet the area, which adds charm to the place.

The intention of reliving or experiencing parts of the "pasts" was not in vain. I had some glimpses. Besides, my favorite flower is there in different colors, the pansies.


  1. Andrea, ang haba naman ng mga kwento mo nakakatamad basahin.

    --Nida (hehe)

  2. Hehehe, would you believe, naloko rin ako when i opened the comment here, i already forgot i was named Nida too.


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