Kollam: Backwaters

Fortunately, nobody told us before we left from Kollam for Munroe Island what a 50 minutes trip of 27 kilometers in a motor rickshaw meant. Otherwise, we would have canceled the trip. But after we had started our trip through those crazy Kerala streets there was no turning back.
When we arrived at Munroe Island in order to go on board our canoe, I was again totally exhausted from the noise, dirt and confusion of our ride. I doubt whether I will ever get used to traveling on Indian streets. For me they are the ultimate definition of stress.
Munroe Island presented itself as a stark and welcomed contrast with its smooth, green-colored and tranquil waterways through lush palm tree forests. It was as if we had arrived on a different planet. I could have gone straight to sleep. But our guide, a 20 year old boy, who pushed us through the backwater channels, was utterly entertaining and made sure that we had a relaxing, entertaining and interesting trip. We visited a robe making – obviously for IKEA – group of women, who, at 2 pm, were at the end of their working day, hurrying to get back home in order to cook for their husbands, and enjoying a delicious chai in a backwater sort of cafe. We continued through the backwater for about 2 hours seeing a bit of Kerala wildlife, Kingfisher, water snakes …
It was just beautiful. Like waking up from a wonderful dream to a stark and uncomfortable reality we got on our rickshaw and took the way back to Kollam.
Back in Kollam our rooms were situated at the front side of the hotel, facing the busy thoroughfare. This room gave Prince’s “Let’s go crazy” a completely new meaning. The song must have been inspired by one of these rooms. The noise, for European ears, is something like quantum physics for Newton.
But the craziness didn’t end there. Heading for the post office, we ventured another rickshaw ride, the driver of which took us against the traffic on a three lane one way street. It was like being in a computer game dodging cars. We also survived this trip and here I am writing, in an Internet cafe, which is somewhat silent except for the loud Indian music that is bawling out of a loud speaker.
I am craving for another holiday…

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