Palolem to Trivandrum

Trip Start Jan 08, 2008
Trip End Apr 19, 2008

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Monday, January 14, 2008

After bidding a sad farewell to Palolem, I headed to the airport bound for Thiruvananthapuram (aka Trivandrum), where my Yoga retreat is located. After almost 2 hours of driving down a crazy windy highway (where it's a miracle accidents don't happen often), I arrived at the airport with literally no time to spare. I had only 15 minutes to check in, go through security and and bored the flight- an impossibility in the States. Yet I experienced another miracle when I made it to my gate just in time. I took a deep breath once I actually boarded the flight.

I spent hours researching the best flight from Goa to Trivandrumb/c everything I found had at least one layover, and it's only a relatively short distance between the 2 cities. I was really annoyed that the best flight i could get for the money had 3 stops, took 5 hours and was on an airline I never heard of (Kingfisher- also the big beer company here). Well, in keeping with the pleasant surprises I'm finding in India, don't you know what I was dreading ended up being one of the best flight's i ever had! The service was wonderful, i never had to leave the plane, our stops would only last 15 min, the fed you every time you landed and took off, and a 5 man flight crew came in to clean each time we landed. They even gave you a survey to fill out in the end. Who knew!?
I had a bag full of food, juice drinks and cookies when i got off the plane.

Since Trivandrum is the farthest major city south India, it's of course much hotter. Temps reach about 98 degrees during the day, but it does cool off late in the night. The people down here are also much different, primarily being most men are swami's. They're all walking around wearing, what looks like a sarong or a big diaper. It's kinda funny.

I checked into a decent hotel and walked around a bit to get something to eat and visit an Internet cafe. I can tell the culture shock is wearing off cause I hardly see any white faces and I don't feel bothered by it anymore. I feel way more comfortable with myself and my surroundings. I sat on a stoop and watched the world go by, while everyone mostly looks at me with a smile. I even noticed a few swami's looking at me like "she stands out", but then I'm looking at them with the same sense of curiosity, so it's all good.

Tomorrow afternoon I'm taking a bus to Neyyar Dam, to the International Sivananda Yoga Dhanwantri Ashram. I don't really know to expect other than that we'll be on a strict schedule, which starts at 5:30am, and will have little down time for ourselves. So, I don't know how much you'll be hearing from me. All I can think of is, I came a long way to get here so I hope i really enjoy my little yoga stint. We shall see...
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