Sunday, October 2

trip to kerala (part three)

We woke up early again this morning and headed to the state of Kerala. As soon as we crossed state borders, I was positive we weren't in India anymore. The landscape was lush and green and looked like that of a tropical island. As we exited the train and into the city of Trivandrum, I heard a sound that I hadn't heard once since I landed in India: silence. The streets were vacant and the usual sounds of horns and traffic ceased to exist. If you've ever been to India, you know this is not normal. It was an eerie sound, the silence, and then it was confirmed that the town was on strike. We spent the rest of the afternoon eating from a fabulous buffet (dal, dal and more dal for me!) and relaxing by/in the pool. That evening, we had a beautiful poolside dinner to welcome the Whole Foods suppliers that had joined us that afternoon and headed to bed for the night.

The next day, we piled into cars and headed off into a more rural area of town. In this village, we were able to sit in on a meeting of women who are currently receiving loans that are being funded by Whole Foods. Though we didn't understand much because of the language barrier, the women were incredibly hospitable offering flowers and coffee to all of us. After, we were able to tour their homes and see the looms and goats that the women were able to buy with their micro loans.

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Finally it was time for lunch. Little did we know, we were in for a huge treat. We headed west to Kovalum Beach and arrived at a beautiful beachside restaurant, connected to the Vivanta by Taj Hotel. There were coconut trees for miles and huge waves from the Arabian Sea crashing against the rocks. This was yet another time I had to stop and ask myself, "Am I REALLY still in India?"

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Arabian Sea

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Can I live here please?


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Barbara and I


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Mary Ellen and Jasdeep


We proceeded to have one of the best meals of my Indian life: fresh squeezed mixed fruit juice, onion rings and potatoes with a delish aioli dipping sauce (we all know how much I love my dipping sauces), a beautiful vegetarian platter of curries, vegetables, rice and parota and, of course, warm chocolate cake for desert. It was the perfect end to a really wonderful and educational day.

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Cheers!


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Yum #1


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Yum #2


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YUM #3!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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