And then the rains came…

After our yoga practice the teacher told us that we ought to be doing breathing exercises, yoga and meditation every morning for one and a half hour and that, if we did, we would be in very good shape for the rest of the day. Why wouldn’t I follow such excellent advice?

Unlike the guests of the hotel, we houseboat people had to check out of our rooms/boats by 9 AM since the boats were leaving. Unprepared I through everything in my tiny suitcase and, with some pleasure, evacuated the rather grungy houseboat. If the resort rooms were 5 stars, the houseboat I stayed on was not even a one star accommodation.

To kill the time before departure I went to the spa for a pedicure that was described in the brochure as something too good to be true. It was. The young beautician had a beautiful smile and looked very pretty but that was about it. Still, I have nice shiny red nails again to replace the nail job Tessa and I had done nearly 6 weeks ago in Beverly.

In pairs or groups the guests started to leave, some for Bangalore and other points North and East, some for the airport and some for Holland. A new wedding party came in – this time a Moslem wedding with women wrapped up in black from head to toe with huge hairdos that made their abayas look even more like tents.

The enormous outdoor wedding hall was dismantled by an army of loin-clothed and very dark-skinned men. The structure was the size of one of our drug warehouses, exactly the kind we were looking for.

As soon as the formal parts of the wedding, in the outdoor hall, had been completed the rains came in. Typical for a dweller of a non-monsoon country I thought, ‘wow, weren’t they lucky.’ But the locals told me that the intense heat and humidity of the last few days would have been reduced if it had rained and they would have been happy if the rains had come earlier.

Everything at the resort was prepared for rain, pull down plastic sides to the various wall-less spaces, large umbrellas in stands everywhere with notices that (only) ladies could ask to be accompanied by someone from the staff to hold the umbrella over her head.

And now I am in another grungy and overpriced hotel near the Cochin airport after having said goodbye to the Dutch family who are travelling back via Mumbai and London tomorrow. The Ayurvedic spa that was advertised for the hotel and one of the reasons I picked, it is closed for the day – darn. The one redeeming feature of the hotel was its cook – the Malabar fish curry was to die for.

My movements are limited, as if I were back in Kabul, but for another reason: sudden downpours. And so I sit in the hotel waiting for tomorrow while catching up on my email and work and watching bad TV.

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