Warning – this is long – you might want to grab yourself a cup of tea!!! Finally I’ve had a chance to sit down and go through some of our holiday photos – I can’t believe it was back in November that we went to India – wow. I was intending to put these into a series of posts as there are so many, but cos it’s been so long I think I’ll do it all at once. They’re just a few (seriously I could have shared hundreds it was such an awesome trip) of our snapshots – I don’t take my big pro gear on holidays – I have enough to carry with two small children!!!
I’m borrowing this idea from another photographer, but I thought I’d make a list of some of my most unforgetable memories about the trip – the good, the bad, the things that made it what it was….
21 memories of our trip to India….
- a 2am flight on an Indian budget airline perhaps wasn’t the most restful start –no sleep on broken chair, with baby on lap… plus turbulence – not a good mix for me – I felt like I’d been on a merry go round (which the kids were later on)!
- Cochin – the most adorable chilled, laid back little place – with fishermen, and islands and churches and people celebrating Eid
- the girls looked like street urchins by day two – grubby faces, dirty fingernails and scuffed knees – but huge toothy smiles through it all
- gardens – staying in homestays meant space for our garden deprived children to run around to their hearts content – making Mummy’s heart sing
- The three generations of this family who took us under their wings and made us part of their family for the few days we were with them – you don’t get hospitality like that just anywhere. Within half an hour of our arrival Saffy had had her hair brushed and re-plaited. Indy’s face had been washed and they’d been introduced to all the extended family
- falling into bed at the end of the first day – all four of us in one huuuuuuuuuge bed and just before drifting off to sleep, realising it was actually only 7pm back home in Abu Dhabi!
- food – homecooked, homegrown, fresh, healthy, tasty = singing tastebuds! (not to mention that Indians TOTALLY get vegetarianism!)
- colours – everywhere – India hits all 5 of your senses full on in the face and nothing more so than the vibrant colour everywhere, everywhere.
- water, water everywhere – which made everything lush and oh, so, green, greeeeeeeen….
- Transport – Part 1: auto rickshaws – we took more of them than any other mode of transport and every time we got in one Saffy sang for the whole journey – she loved them! And nothing is more wonderful than your child singing with joy when they enjoy something so much.
- Transport – Part 2 – Busses: the bus from Cochin to Aleppy – me, 2 girls on my lap, and 4 other women, all squashed onto a 3 person seat, and the way there are no barriers – food gets shared, songs get sung, chat is exchanged about destinations and journeys – no one complains – it is what it is…
- Transport – Part 3 – Trains: he trains – I’m a train junkie and love to take train journeys – there’s something so wonderful about train travel – so soothing – that you don’t get with any other mode of transport – I can sit and watch the world go by from a train window all day long
- Transport – Part 4 – Ambassador cars: the feeling of being transported back to the days of the Raj (I know they’re probably not that old) – I feel like a little girl going in an old car!
- backwater boat trip – one of the best AED500 spent – ever! Peaceful, relaxing, stunning, restful, and all while being waited on by 3 boatboys who really could not have been more helpful. If you ever go to Kerala, you must NOT miss a boat trip!! Go to sleep having seen the sun go down like this….. and wake up to this…. Bliss….
- Relaxing with a beer on the balcony or the beach listening to the waves of the Arabian Sea / Indian Ocean – and watching the girls do their sun dance as they waved goodbye to it.
- hammocks big enough for the whole family, or swings for the girls – made to make you relax…
- Shopping for textiles and handmade items at cooperatives where you knew the money was actually going to benefit the people that made the things you bought.
- Time – just having 8 uninterrupted days to spend together – with no email, no facebook, no work, no TV, no…. nothing but US time for the four of us.
- Watching Saffy climb a tree for the first time – simple pleasures which we had as kids that apartment living children don’t get
- ankle bells that the girls got for being good on the boat, and not requiring us to jump overboard on a life saving mission – their giddiness as they jingle jangled as they ran around with their new anklets
- Smiles – everywhere – welcoming people – I can’t wait to go back…..