Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Memories from travels over the years

I came across a nice idea on a blog to write a few lines about all the places you have travelled to. While it's not possible to list every trip, coz some are big, some are small and some aren't memorable at all (ah, that rhymed, I've listed some of the places I've visited, in no particular order or chronology. Will try and add pictures later.

Amsterdam- This is my most recent trip and honestly deserves an entire post(which may or may not materialize, so better a line than nothing). Absolutely fell in love with the place! Boats on the canals; the trams winding through the heart of the city; the lovely August weather; warm people- friendly and full of humour; beautiful countryside (struggled through did a 33 km cycling km tour through villages and a beautiful route bordering the sea); stroopwaffles (!)- super yum local biscuit, two layers of waffles with syrup in between (not sticky or too sweet, just right); and the very organized traffic (if you're from India, any place with even a moderate sense of discipline on the roads will amaze you, but I found it particularly fascinating that cyclists are given an entire path of their own to pedal along. Neat!) Besides there's the plethora of museums of which I visited a few- Anne Frank's house, Van Gough, Rembrandt, Rijksmuseum, and a cute little Windmill museum. There's enough to keep a tourist occupied for a couple of days even if you don't venture near the places that Amsterdam is otherwise (in)famous for. :) But I suppose if you go all the way there, you might want to check out everything, including the hash brownies. Afraid I didn't try those.

Coorg- Here's where you wake up and smell the coffee. Especially since we stayed at a coffee estate surrounded by shrubs of arabica (if my memory serves me right). I didn't enjoy the place as much as the company- a boisterous bunch of family members including cousins, aunts/uncles and assorted grandparents.

Yercaud- More coffee, more fun. I remember the picturesque views, drives through the plantations, jackfruit growing all over the place, and the first time I saw pepper on trees (like lovely green pearls). The highlight was a trek (in our pyjamas) to some supposed famous falls (Kiliyur) which ultimately turned out to be only a trickle of water dripping down the rocks. Also remember an incident when we were all admiring some caterpillar in the grass. My cousin brother, who noticed us bunched up, came running to inspect and in his misplaced enthusiasm crushed it right under his shoe, before asking innocently, "What are you guys looking at"?

Thailand- The first time I ventured out of the country, so this trip is extra special. The deep blue seas of Phuket, the stunning view from our hotel room (Cape Panwa); the surreal (and initially frightening) experience of scuba diving, with fish swimming past you; the vibrant nightlife of Patong; and the crazy shopping haven that is Bangkok -funn(although hubs and I both thought we didn't do justice to all the goodies on offer and need to revisit the place to fill our wardrobes and empty our wallets).

Goa- I must be one of the few people who haven't visited this place in their partying days, by which I mean a college trip or a New year's bash or just a trip with friends. The only time I've been here was when I was 10 (not amusing to most I suppose) but so many events from the trip are etched in my mind because it was one of the first proper holiday with my family, with the added jazz of a 5 star hotel. I was thrilled by the starfish on the beach, the joys of building sand castles, the sumptious buffet at the hotel. I think I really need to update this list with a visit to the flea markets, laze on the beach, and just have a hippy holiday. :)

To be continued...