Wednesday, August 10, 2005

A trip to Malappuram, Kerala

Malappuram is a small town in the most backward district of Kerala. This is the district immediately to the the south of Kozhikode (Calicut) district. Interestingly, the Calicut Airport and University are located in this district, and not in Calicut district!

I visited this place on work last week, from the 3rd to the 5th of August.

Had a great journey reaching here. The flight from Mumbai was via Coimbatore. After an hour within the plane at Coimbatore runway, it was announced that the flight will not proceed to Calicut due to a technical snag. So they (Indian Airlines) put us all into taxis for the 4 hour ride to Calicut. I was lucky to share a taxi with only one another gentleman, an elderly Mr. Dias. The taxi was an indica, well maintained, and quite fast! The scenery along the drive was simply outstanding. I got to see a side of Kerala that I had been blind to all these years. Just as we left Coimbatore, and all alongside us for the first half of the journey were the high Nilgiris. It looked especially beautiful with the greenery due to the rains, occasional waterfalls, and wisps of clouds covering the higher peaks. For the second half of the journey, the mountains gave way to even more greenery. Plantations of coconut, banana and the occasional rubber, were everywhere! It was more greenery than both of us could take!

Another good outcome was that the place I wanted to go to was on the highway itself betwen Coimbatore and Calicut. So I got a free drop! In retrospect, the extended journey turned out to be a blessing in disguise!

Had a series of good meetings here. The journey back was quite uneventful, except for a small delay as the flight was an international one coming from Sharjah via Kochi (Cochin).

Monday, August 01, 2005

Rains in Mumbai

By now, many of you would have heard of the heavy rains in Mumbai. How heavy it is can be gauged from the fact that we have already had more than the average annul rainfall in less than half of the monsoon season! I wonder how much rain we will end up receiving this season!

I normally do not like the rains, I much rather prefer the warmth of the sun! And I have been cooped up at home for 3 days now, and not enjoying it at all. The redeeming factor is that my niece is staying with us. She is all of 10 months old, and it's great fun watching her play.

The rains have also put a spoke into my travel plans. I was planning to travel to Malappuram, near Kozhikode (Calicut) in Kerala, for a couple of days, starting tomorrow, the 2nd of August. But now, I am hoping to be at least able to reach office tomorrow, and then figure out my travel plans.

I hope everyone is fine, wherever they might be.