This was an unforgettable getaway with family just in the midst of the chaos surrounding an Indian wedding. Yes, my wedding. I bargained for this trip with my folks and eventually gave them no choice but to take some time off work and relax. Munnar in God’s own country, as they say, has always been a place I wanted to visit and finally managed to do so. We set off really early from my hometown, Erode in Tamil Nadu. My younger brother was responsible for the drive and I took care of the music. We had over 200 kms ahead of us.
Having spent the last 8 years away from home, my senses were always assaulted every time I do go back. This was one of it. A bunch of ladies travelling desi-style !! I couldn’t help but smile.
Surprisingly enough I could see India was beginning to invest in renewable resources. These things never existed when I was little.
And did I tell you my favourite tree is the coconut tree?! I love the rustling sound the leaves make in the wind and a good part of our journey proved to be a visual treat for me.
We were now at the borders of Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
Be warned when you cross these check posts, the police or guards tend to ask for money to get across and could make you believe it is mandatory for crossing, especially if you are an outsider. Perhaps even the locals don’t mind this and invariably may give some cash to avoid a clash. Unfortunately for the guy(s), I questioned them back about these so-called charges and asked if I would get a receipt in return for the payment. Some were a bit persistent but others immediately dropped the conversation and asked us to go ahead after signing in the register which they maintain. This did put me off. It’s one of those things that India can never escape from. It has become a way of life. People now call it, ‘go with the flow’ or quote ‘when in Rome..’
Anyway, as I was trying to forget it, we had a curious visitor (who wouldn’t budge for a long while!).
The air was beginning to go cooler and dense. I could see more and more green. Believe it or not, this picture is straight off the camera, no edits !
The usual trees you see on the plains got replaced. After about 7 hours on the road which included a food break, we were surrounded by breathtaking green !! Munnar green.
Yes, I have been to other hill stations in India before. No, never before have I seen anything like this.
We stayed away from the hustle of the main town and the resort was a further 10 km plus drive from Munnar. We relaxed upon arrival and my mum was feeling a little under the weather. Fever 🙁 Somehow she managed the journey. We were now hungry for dinner and decided to check out the restaurant in the resort.
Gastronomic experiences ! We also celebrated my folks wedding anniversary with a cake and candle. Mum seemed a little better but still tired from fever and the journey.
The next morning, we (again) ate to our heart’s content.
Afterall, what’s a holiday without food?!
Energized from all the carbs, mum was even up for a mini walk. It was the beginning of monsoon.
The air was fresh and I was being silly and trying to eat the fog as we walked 🙂
We made our way back to the resort for more relaxation. It was peaceful. It was bliss.
Look, we have a visitor too 😉
While mum slept, the three of us, Dad me and bro, decided to take a drive around the place and explore a little. I was beginning to get used to the excessive use of horns, especially at blind bends on the mountains.
This view point was stunning. You could almost walk in the clouds..
We walked around and I found a perfect spot to drink in the scene a bit more.
Green. Unbelievably green ! I couldn’t get enough of it. Only until my tummy started to grumble. It was around 3 pm, well past lunch time. After driving further for a while in search of a place to eat, we found a mediocre joint and ate the only available choice of food. Perhaps, if you travel as a family, a self-catered cottage would be more suitable. This way you would have a choice. The rest of the day was spent chilling at the resort and we were to drive back the next day.
My brother and I named this little vehicle- the bug ! It did look like a bug at an angle zipping across the hill station.
This was the heart of Munnar. Munnar means three rivers. We saw notes from travellers around the globe in a little tea shop. This place was certainly special.
We shopped for souvenirs, tea and spices in the local market. It rained mildly. I was not ready to leave just yet.
You can see lots of colourful shrines like this all along the hills. I wondered how it could be so colourful, a stark contrast to the churches you find in England.
We took our time driving back, stopping whenever wherever, gaping at the absolute beauty Munnar was.
We rolled our windows down for fresh air and began to hear women singing.
We stopped by to see that a bunch of them were busy picking tea leaves.
We spoke to some of the women and realized most of them have lived all their lives there.
Content. Simple-minded. Happy.
They work hard for a living but never complain. Average daily wage of these workers depend on the number of tea leaves they pick and ranged from £1 to £3. Yet, they were happy. They were singing 🙂 I was glad modern life has not got to them. Not yet at least.
The women also had beautiful names !! Names which I had almost forgotten, given the evolving baby names which ought to be highly fashionable.
It was an amazing trip. Although short, I was thankful for it.
Thankful that mum managed the entire trip despite being unwell. Thankful that my brother kept us safe on the road. Thankful for the silly jokes my dad cracked. Thankful for the simplicity the place had on offer. Thankful for the beautiful people we met en-route.
Munnar, I am coming back ! With Love.
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Hi, I am Indu. I hail from a very small town called Erode in Tamil Nadu. Currently, I live in a village called Armitage, in England. It’s a small and quiet country life and I love the peace and nature this place has got on offer. Nevertheless, this doesn’t stop me from having my occasional ‘wild’ days 🙂 I have been an on and off blogger for a while but I realize how much I enjoy blogging ! So, I am beginning where I left. I hope you enjoy reading my articles as much as I enjoy writing them. Do share them if you like and I look forward to your comments. Namaste !!