Saturday, June 6, 2009

27-31 May 2009, return to India

Dexter went to school the day I left, so he could get his nap. He wasn't interested in the big farewell thing, so here's some shots of him before he left for school. I won't see him for at least a year.



Suzie and Ramon took me to the airport (Ramon took time off work to take me to the airport), and Erica, Joan, and Sharon met me there, hanging out with me until I needed to go through security. What a godsend. It was so nice to have their company as I went through the rigors of the international terminal check-in. I'm very lucky.
My flight from San Francisco took off Wednesday afternoon, 27 May; I landed in Chennai, India, on Friday, 29 May at 3am. Needless to say, I crossed a date line in there somewhere. Whew, that's terribly long. So good to see Gopal.

The following day, we peeked into a housing show going on at the auditorium across the street from our guest house. Just wanted you to see it. Looks the same, huh? The main difference was that many of the booths were empty, but that could be because it was only 9:30am, early by Indian standards.

This was one of two solar energy booths


After a hideous train ride from Chennai to Mettapalayam (3-tier car, unable to sleep), our equally hideous taxi driver (picked a fight with the autorickshaw drivers at the train station and offended everyone else on the road all the way up the muntain to our home!) stopped so we could get some breakfast en route to home further into the hills. Ugh! I was surprised how welcome the South Indian food was (this is pongal, a minimally spiced, very traditional rice dish, sambar and chutneys served on a banana leaf).
When we stopped at a railroad crossing on our way up the mountain, I realized that this train may be driven by a steam engine. Sure enough!

video

It has been nice to be home, even though it's my first monsoon season here. Turns out, at least now, monsoon is sweet. The mornings are warm and sunny, clouding up in the afterenoon, when it rains most days, at least for a while. I like it a lot. Today it has rained all day, and that's OK too.

1 comment:

PARANOMASIA said...

I've really enjoyed reading of your retirement experience in India, and espcially your life in Coonoor. I visited Ooty again last March for the third time contemplated my own retirement there. Isn't that Taj Majesty hotel a trip! My friend and I kept saying "The glory that was England..."

Ooty leaves something to be desired, so this year I'm heading down to Kodaikanal for a look around.

I'm in Seattle and a decent dosa is impossible to find. How I long for Uddupi Palace in Berkeley or Sunnyvale! Have one for me, will you?

Drop me line if you'd like to chat via email. address is

ootyootyooty AT gmail (dot) com