Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Incredible India - Day 7 - Ernakulam & Doronto Express

After our overnight house boat experience we had a day to spend in Ernakulam, which is right next to Cochin. Salim collected us in Allaphuza and took us back to Ernakulam where we first went to the Kerala Folklore Museum to have a look at some of the history and art and artifacts of the area, then we went to the main market street and Jewish district where we shopped, looked at the old Jewish Synagogue and generally just walked around and took in the sights. There were some beautiful crafts and I especially liked the ornate brass and silver locks which were shaped like turtles, fish etc. They are stunning and some very cleverley designed with hidden features.

We looked at a book shop nearby which was selling books for Rs350 which was pretty cheap. I spotted A Thousand Splendid Suns and wanted to buy it (should have), but didn't. Instead we walked and walked and walked and walked. Pretty much all over Ernakulam. By dusk we were tired hot and sweaty.

We were catching the train to Mumbai at 9pm and had booked a, relatively pricey, 1st class cabin. I thought we'd get showering facilities on board the train but we were that hot and sticky we decided in the end not to risk it and A got a good rate at a cheap hotel to give us a room for one hour and the four of us dashed through taking turns to shower and clean up.

Funny I always imagined that you'd book a hotel room for 1-hour to get dirty, not clean, but there you go!

We felt much better once we were clean. Since we'd miss dinner time on the train we popped into a restaurant for a quick meal before boarding the Doronto Express. For our 24-hour train ride to Mumbai.

Well what an experience that was! All I can say is THANK-GOD we booked first class, because I do not even want to know what the other classes are like. I am by no means squeamish or finicky, but oh my word the toilets were gross. I am so so glad we'd had that shower before we got on the train because there was no where to wash and no where clean to be either. Our cabin was ok, once we'd wiped it down, so we just stayed in there. They gave us clean linen which was nice and made it comfortable enough. And then they fed us, and fed us and fed us some more. The food was surprisingly lovely. But as we were just sitting there or sleeping most of the time we weren't all that hungry, so there really was far too much food.

The boys managed to get into a groove and somehow we coexisted in that small confined space without arguing (much), or killing each other. I managed to sleep quite well over night and didn't even wake up when we passed through Goa in the early morning. Eventually in the late afternoon we arrived in the great city of Mumbai.

Next our Mumbai Mania.

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