Beach Holiday & Elephant Festival, Bob Marley Ban
Trip Start Sep 29, 2007
215Trip End Dec 20, 2010
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Where I stayed
guesthouse near the party site
house down an alleyway near Suset rest and Namaste Ayurvedic
Varkala Beach has a backdrop of red cliffs adjacent to the Arabian sea and also a few waves for swimming and bodyboarding the white wash. It's high season but there's still lots of space on the sand. The feel is a little more relaxed than Goa, very cruisy and there's less peacock prancing happening
Next day was a beach day. The crew above headed to Trivandrum to find Amma the Hugging Mother saint and they all came back very high, buzzing and happy with their experience. We wandered around shopping, drinking tea and followed some chanting to a temple. I bought a sundress that actually looked like a see-through potato sack when i got it back to the hotel because there was no mirror in the shop i bought it from. I also got some fake Armani sunglasses so i can see again. We watched another perfect sunset and i ran into Ben from the boat and pixie Xavier and Avi from Hampi. We saw the Dutchies in the street and enjoyed another dinner date at the tree house restaurant with Emmanuel and Chris with chats late into the night.
Another Juice Shack morning and beach day the next day too, there's a pattern emerging. Ginger Chris had hired an umbrella so he didn't get too lobster-ish and i sat and chatted to the lads. In the afternoon Nadia persuaded Chris to get a nose piercing done with her so they went to the local beautician's shack where a woman used a gun to staple some large, diamond bling studs into their noses. His and Hers nose piercings. Luckily the new jewellery suits them both and they are now pierced and proud. Bling, bling, bling!!!
That evening we all had tickets to a nice little party gathering happening right next to our hotel in a fabulous garden space. The party was advertised as a 'magic chillout and positive vibes psy party', nice one. The crew had made a nice little space with bonfire, lighting through the trees and chill out mats
Next day we scoured the cliff to find a TV on which to watch the Australian Open men's tennis final with Federer and Nadal playing. We were joined by some Scottish pub monster folk. I ate some mashed potatoes and onion dish with lashings of tomato sauce Aussie style. The Aussie crowd watching the game cracked us up in laughter. The youngster Nadal won.
We had to get out of our hotel because the Baba who runs it is a bit of a groper trying to grab our arses and a strange man indeed, he's a couple of cans short of a six pack because kept inviting us for sex despite us telling him we were not interested. He would follow us up to our room flashing a giant Colgate, jetser like, white grin then we would have to close the door on his face
Next day we hit the beach again and did some bodysurfing. I did a Baywatch style rescue attempt on Chris trying to drag him out of the ocean and do CPR. There is some beautiful yoga sessions happening on the beach at sunset everyday with a saxophone player providing the soundtrack, nice one.
We all ate at the Rock n Roll Restaurant for Emanuelle's last night. We met a very cute Austrian girl named Victoria ansd some Canadians Jeromy and Matthew. Emanuelle is a curious, cool cat Swedish guy who is riding an Enfield motorbike around India. We were sad to see him go as he leaves for the north. In the venue they actually played hip hop and the dreaded Brittany Spears music. There wasn't alot of Rock or Roll happening. The service was great and the food was amazing though. Here i tasted the most wonderful fish i have ever eaten, a delicious sea salmon fillet chosen fresh from the table where the catch of the day is displayed. Most of the restaurants have these display tables where there is all kinds of fish including sharks or giant, marlin fish to choose from as well as giant tiger prawns and squids. The restuarants will cook it in a variety of styles. There was some bonfire action down the beach late into the night with firetwirlers and drummers. On the way home in the dark, Nadia stubbed her toe and split it open, the same way i had in Fort Cochi, where does all this toe karma come from?
Yes, beach again the next day and we all realised in shock that we had been in Varkala Beach for a week now
One morning we went to the southern beach and visited the tank and the Janardham Temple which has some colourful carvings and shrines. There are some shrines to my beloved Hanuman the monkey god and to Ayyappan. There was also an interesting Banyan tree in flower within the temple ground. Around the base of the tree people had hung hundreds of plastic children's dolls as offerings. In Hinduism, the banyan tree is considered sacred and is called "Ashwath Vriksha" God Siva is nearly always depicted sitting in silence under the banyan tree. It is thought of as perfectly symbolizing eternal life due to its seemingly unending expansion. Also in Hindu culture, the banyan tree is also called "kalpavriksha" meaning 'wish fulfilling divine tree'. We found out about a good tribal village art space and had breakfast on the beach with some nice, morning, chanting tracks.
We heard from the father of the guesthouse that there was to be an elephant procession happening at a small temple inland from the beach in the afternoon
That night we met an interesting doctor, Ann from the Netherlands who knew the Dutchies and we all talked some more crap over dinner with the crew just for something different. We made plans with Ann to visit Amma, the Hugging Mother's ashram in a couple of days so we could all feel the love and Chris and Sandra would be going in for their second hug.
On one of the last nights Chris, Nadia and i went to the more expensive Cafe Del Mar where the food was fantastic and the ambience great, that means simple tunes, candles and no flouro lights. My calamari tikka masala was delicious.
This was a nice holiday within our travels. The restaurants on the 'Vegas' strip were a little bit ground hog day. We mainly ate at a simple organic place called 'Cliff' for breakfasts and a variety of locations at night. Varkala feels like a planet of it's own and is very much cut off from the whole India feel. A good place to visit with a good bunch of new friends
Sandra has decided to join us for the Vippasana 10 day silence retreat meditation in Chenganur so we're all mentally preparing for the course that starts very soon. We've had to buy a whole lot of new clothing. I've finally folded and purchased a t-shirt and it's one of the touristy Ganesha t-shirts because we need some gear for the upcoming yoga classes at Sivananda.
I never want to hear any Bob Marley tracks again, ever, i mean it.
Lame Jokes Of The Day:
Why did they have so much trouble burying Bob Marley?
Because his coffin kept jammin'
What did Bob Marley say when his wife left him and took the oven?
No Woman, No Pie
really lame, terrible in fact