A journey through South-East Asia - visiting the temples of Thailand, floating down the Mekong in a slow boat, seeing the sunset in Laos, waiting for the quiet of night in Hanoi, drifting through Halong Bay, trekking the mountains of SaPa, travelogue, trip, travel, journey, road, Asia, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Indochina, Mekong, Halong Bay, Hanoi, Vang Vien, Chang Mai, Bangkok, slow boat, Luang Prabang, Pak Ou



Seafood shacks, Kovalam

Wednesday, 11. December 2002 9:40:46 AM
a Christmas carol

I'll be home for Chrismas. You can count on me. Please have snow and mistletoe, but Handy, dont touch that tree. *grin*

HOME HOME HOME! I so want to get my butt home and start celebrating Christmas! We were walking down the dusty, overcrowded, noise and air polluted streets of Chennai that don't actually have sidewalks, having our sleeves tugged by begging children while we step over sleeping bodies, and I was about to just put my melting brain into a container, when I saw a sign that said Shopping Mall. I decided it was time to head inside. And what, oh what was there to the right? A store that might as well have been Chapters. I mean,...a real, REAL bookstore... with a cafe... the land of western civilization... here... selling coffee... HERE... and... no.... no it can't be... is that... is that CHRISTMAS MUSIC playing? Can I stay here until it's time to leave tonight?

OH it was glorious. Escalators! Escalators in a store that sells rows and rows of books and coffee and plays Christmas music. It was the closest thing to home I've experienced. And the closest thing to Christmas I have experienced. I walked by a Christmas tree in a shop window and petted the glass, causing even more curious stares than I usually get. Oh... oh Christmas. Wait for me. I swear I am coming.

I don't even know what to tell you. I am so consumed with home and holidays. Let me see.

We spent 4 days in Kovalam, your typical beach paradise with seafood shacks lining the shore and more shopping than I thought possible in such a small area. For those of you who have access to my travel partner, Miss Saunders, I am sure you will hear all about my adventures there and I am willing to take the ribbing in person, but for the rest of you, or until then, I am not about to write about the insanity that took place. Just know that: I have 2 standing invitations to have my flight ticket paid if I want to return; I know what it's like to go where everybody knows your name (or at least what you were wearing a few nights before); I had strangers wanting to give me dresses; and I had my first straight out invitation to go back to a hotel with a man twice my age to partake in pot and carnal acts (maybe that has happened before, but not before lunch at least).

Kovalam was super humid and hot, but it was gorgeous. There weren't TOO many tourists there yet, so things were pretty relaxed. I spent most of my mornings on the beach, then hid in a seafood shack by noon till about 2, then did some casual shopping, went back to cool off at the hotel, went to visit my friend Raja at his store to have a cold drink in the afternoon, then was hassled by Sunni to eat at his restaurant at night time, and just zoned out to the sound of the waves for an entire evening while I eat a plate full of crab. Devine.

No, I am not tanned.

I liked Kovalam a lot because I had a chance to really get to know some of the local people and talk with them about life.

And now, Chennai. The land of billboards, honking horns, and dirt. I want to go home. We have a long flight to Frankfurt that leaves at 1:50 am, then a 6 hour stopover *choke* (for which I bought Mark Twain's "Diary of Adam and Eve" to read, then we fly to Toronto and the wonderful Handy will be picking us up at 3:30 (? Is that it? I can't remember) local time. Afternoon. Just in time for rush hour *grin* and Christmas.

"It's warm outside, but I can hear the snow falling on my window."

Happy Holidays boys and girls. This concludes our travelling broadcast.


- DV, 2004, Canada -

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