Saturday, October 2, 2010

Kerala, India

We left Kovalam and arrived in Allepey, 1 hour south of Kochin in the Kerala region on the west coast. So green and tropical. We boarded a houseboat and wow, so fantastic, the scenery was breathtaking and very relaxing. Caught an amazing sunset and just as amazing sunrise. We had lunch, dinner slept on the boat and had breakfast the next morning. It was spotlessly clean and comfortable and the Captain was cook as well and the food was sensational!

We are now in Kochin where the were alot of European Missionaries, so the are always a few foreigners. Similiar shopping, visited Bazaar Road where all the spices and local markets are. Our hotel is 300 years old, Colonial influence with lots of European wood. There is alot of history here. Watched a traditional Kathkali Dance which was exciting and different. Visited Mikey's cousin, Vernon and his Uncle and meet his lovely family.

Heading back to Trichy today to rest before we head back to Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Kovalam, India

It was sad to leave Mahabliparum, we had such a nice, comfortable stay. Our next stop was Pondicherry a French city down the coast. It was very busy. We visited alot of lovely relatives, visited markets and the Promenade. We only stayed over night and I would have liked to have spent another day checking out the French areas more.

The next stop about 5 hours south, was Vailankanni, a very spiritual place where the Shrine Basicillica, Our Lady of Vailankanni Catholic Church, where Mikey's Mum & Dad were married. It is like the Vatican in India. We attended Mass, lit candles, gave offerings, visited the priest and he blessed us. Cousin Johnny joined us again to guide us through our procession. It was hot and absolutely packed full with pilgrims and visitors, again I did not see another foreigner. There were markets leading down to the beach, where you could buy a fresh seafood lunch or dinner. The beach was like Currumbin Estuary, silty. Our hotel was quite good and cheap and the hotel restaurant was fantastic, delicious food and great service.

We left Vailankanni after dinner on the 2nd night to travel through to Kovalam, a beach resort on the south west coast, Kerala. It was a rough night drive but we had to make up time as we did not realise that 240 klms would take 5-6 hours in India, the traffic and roads are ridiculous! And did I mention our driver "Muthu" of Chella tours, he must be the best driver in the world! Yes we are now in lovely Kovalm, it is a little cooler as there has been a bit of rain. The beaches hear in Kovalam are lovely little tropical coves with lots of coconut palms. The sand is course and the sea is salty and there is a bit of sea lice. The surf is good and Mikey is taking advantage of that. There are a handful of foreigners and the shopping is like in Mahabliparum, alot of the shops are owned by the Kashmirians, from the north of India, lovely stuff like in "Tree of Life" but kinda expensive for India. It is very hard to bargain them down in the heat, just can't be bothered. Mikey wants to buy me something for my birthday though so maybe today I will find something. I might just get myself a massage for my birthday too!

Tomorrow we leave for Kochin to visit an Uncle and maybe spend a night on a houseboat, until the next internet wifi.....

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mahabliparum, India

We have had a lovely time in Mahabliparum, it is a kinda beach resort area, but still very very raw! Cows are everywhere just like as if there would be kangaroos bouncing around our streets at home! No one owns them, no one feeds them, no one milks them, they poo everywhere! I can't help but look and stare at the dumb cows in the way everywhere. They are just a part of the streetscape! Same in Chennai, cows in a huge city like Sydney! On the traffic islands even!

And Chennai, wow, sooo busy, and hot! We visited Mikey's Aunty, Phyllis Aunty. She is gorgeous, lives in a tiny room in an elderly home, only enough room for a single bed, cupboard, 2 plastic chairs and a bedside table. Painted concrete floor and padlock front door! She still jokes around, she is a character. She spoke of some interesting stories and blessed us. We bought her Cadburys chocolate, her favourite! Charlotte Aunty was also there to visit and see us. She is quieter, but still just as sweet. She is Hindu and had on the most gorgeous Sari.
We then had a late lunch at cousin Johnny's house on the outskirts of Chennai and met his gorgeous wife and 2 girls. We could have stayed there longer they were absolutely beautiful people.

The surf at Shore Temple at Mahabs was fantastic and Mikey and Brendan had a great time surfing every morning. Only a couple of young Indians surf and one morning one Aussie guy went out and a French guy too. There are a handful of foreigners around Mahabs, but the local women stare at me alot, I think it is the blonde hair. Johnny's wife said they only see blonde hair on dolls!

Yes the Jetlag has been a bit of a killer and I am still waking up about 4am which is 8.30am in Australia.

The shopping in Mahabs is good, alot of basic clothes you see in the shop in Australia "Tree of Life". Also jewellery, bags, etc. - a bit like Bali but very raw.

Some photos...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Hi from Trichy, India!

Well we arrived in Trichy safe and sound. The flight to Kuala Lumpur was very good, it was an Air Bus, so the landing was also nice and smooth. Kuala Lumpur reminded me a little like Bangkok and Bali I spose, nice and hot 30degrees and humid. Busy, alot quite modern, some old, green and reasonably clean. Mostly Muslim, Hindu and Indians in KL. Hotel Sentral in good position, satisfactory and clean. Food good. Jumped on monorail next morning and stopped off at Petaling Street where there are heaps of markets. It will be very good shopping on way back. Flight to Trichy was good too, nice new airport, basic though. I think I was the only Blonde on the plane! We were welcomed by Mikey's cousin Johnny with flowers for me and the kids. He is very sweet. We were also welcomed by our driver Chella with a Hindu garland of flowers. Our mini bus is quite new, air conditioned and comfortable. Our hotel is reasonable and comfortable. The kids went swimming in the pool straight away. It is hot 30 degrees or more and humid. Trichy is a small city for India, busy of course, cows on the streets, and it is quite green. We had dinner at our hotel in their very popular full service, air conditioned Restaurant. Lovely buffet packed with Indian food. Jesse got right into it, but MIa still doesn't like any spices yet, but she was a good girl and tried alot of different things. In the end she ate plain rice and chicken and a few little bread rolls and of course a little chocolate cake. She then fell asleep in my arms. We are about 41/2 hrs behind over here, so me and the kids went straight to bed after dinner. I seem to wake up Australian time, so here I am at laptop catching up on emails etc. Anyway, we will be traveling again today in our mini bus first to visit the Rock Fort Temple in Trichy and then to Villuparum where Mikey's parents lived. Then on to Chennai and Mahabliparum on the east coast where we stay for 3 nites and Mikey is hoping for surf!

Everything great so far, we are looking forward to a few days stop at Mahabliparum.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Hi from KL!

Well it has been quite a while since I have blogged, but I thought what a great opportunity to get back into it with documenting our trip to India. It all starts today with our flight from Gold Coast to Kuala Lumpur flying Air Asia. Wow, we are impressed with the Air Asia flight, comfortable and friendly and very safe smooth landing (always tells it all for me). I am dragging around my laptop on this trip and I did some work during the flight.
I liked Kuala Lumpur as soon as I disembarked, 30 degrees and humid! We have only just checked into our hotel and free wifi!! Cool!
So now we are all hungry and are just about to find some dinner and check out some markets or something!
Tomorrow we will spend the morning sight-seeing and then back to the airport in the arvo to South India!
Until the next internet connection we find during our journey...

Saturday, June 19, 2010

ZiP-E Logo

Working on a logo for a drawing class and I have just about finalised it in illustrator and it is due this Tuesday. I would love some feedback, on colour etc.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Long Awaited Tea Packaging

It's not the Mad Hatter, I have settled on Storm in a Teacup and after many variations, my 3 prototypes are....

Storm in a Teacup teas are to relax, calm, sooth, comfort and settle any of those worries, and are good for well-being.