A roller coaster ride on a bus honking in sync to the beat of Bollywood tunes blaring on a television dangling from the ceiling; a dash through endless strings of chaotic villages and heaps of people; a panorama of barreling trucks listing and careening their way through clouds of dust; an endless cacophony of ear-piercing, elephant-inspired air horns; roadside vendors stringing together flower garland temple offerings amidst clouds of pollution; food stalls serving up colorful bites in makeshift newspaper cups and banana leaves; cows and long-horned oxen browsing through sidewalk trash heaps; and Brahmin priest blessings by morning and elephant blessings by night.
Life in all its incarnations of filth and colorful glory. Just another typical day for us in southern India. Continue Reading »
We arrived in India with mild travel trepidation. Aside from the monsoon-like rains which greeted our arrival, we’ve been pleasantly surprised by how relaxed life is in the southern Indian state of Kerala.
To give you an idea, we offer a photographic mosaic and a few highlights from our first two days. Continue Reading »
Before we serve up a snapshot-mosaic of what we sampled while here in Singapore, a note on what we mean by “return” to India.
For each of us, India served as a first trip outside of North America, albeit at very different times in each of our lives. Audrey’s senses were barraged at five weeks old. Despite her good memory, she obviously doesn’t recall much of that first trip, nor of the subsequent two years she lived there. Dan’s visit happened at 26 years. He’ll never forget it; he almost didn’t make it back due to a bout of dengue fever. Continue Reading »
Twilight quickly yields to night at Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital city.
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Why are you carrying a dead body with you around the world?
– A fellow traveler attempting to carry one of our backpacks.
If you’ve run into us on this trip, you may have noticed something of a contradiction: we appear heavily laden even though we exhibit a knack for wearing the same clothes almost every day.
“What’s with that?” you might ask.
If our bags aren’t stuffed with spiffy duds for nights out on the back beach, then what on earth are we carrying? Continue Reading »
Obstacle-removing turtles, cavorting monkeys, remarkable chana masala and free shoe repair. We didn’t find entries for these in our guidebooks, but we did find them on the streets and in the hills of Penang, Malaysia.
Guidebooks certainly give us places to go. But the most memorable moments of cultural experience, introspection and human kindness often pass somewhere between all the “must see” stars plotted on tourist maps.
You’ve probably heard this all before. It’s hardly an epiphany. So why do we bring it up? Continue Reading »