Toddy time

If there was one thing I really wanted to experience while in Kerala, it was the local brew, toddy! I was told there are bars everywhere that offer the drink, an alcoholic beverage collected from the sap of various species of palm trees like date palms and coconut palms. A friend of my host in…

Colour from Kerala

Kerala is incredibly green – and awash with colour! This is perhaps because of its very wet climate, proximity to the sea or just His blessings. Whichever way you look at it, you will see there is never any dearth of a splash of colour – an awesome variety of flowers, plants and shrubs of…

Banana boom

Bananas – lots of bananas – of different kinds – are omnipresent in Kerala. Every house has several banana trees, they are everywhere on the streets, at every roadside and on every dining table. The tiny “Kerala banana” is native only to the state while the larger, “regular” variety can also be found. However, it…

Cruise times

I had always wanted to take a houseboat cruise on the famed Kerala Backwaters in Southern India. And, when I was in Kollam recently, that opportunity came my way. Being there in the midst of nature, the calm waters and the millions of coconut palms is an experience, during which one is at pains to…

Kool Kollam

My recent short visit to Kerala took me to the quaint little town of Kollam (previously Quilon), virtually on India’s southernmost tip. I did expect the place to be rather quiet (most of Kerala is rather so) but what I witnessed was right of a school history textbook. What was striking was everyone takes it…