Whilst getting money out of my travel wallet this morning I noticed that it hadn’t been closed up in my usual OCD way (I twist it shut and twirl the cord round in a very specific way ;)). I thought that was odd, so we checked the money inside and found it to be a few thousand rupees short. As we only drew the money out 2 days ago, we couldn’t reconcile this with any spending we’d done during that time frame. It’s possible someone crept in our front door whilst I was in the shower. I’ve grown so relaxed here I leave it open to let air circulate in the room since it is very hot. We’re going to have to revert to South African mode and be more security conscious with our stuff so as not to tempt fate again. It’s amazing how losing money can effect your day ;) Time for me to put non-attachment into practice and let go, let go, let go.... It’s only money after all. In any event it could have been much worse (my thoughts went back to the recent drunk Russian scenario).
Looks like we’ll be heading down to Kerala in the next couple of days (train bookings dependant) and doing a stint at the Amma Ashram – headquarters of the Hugging Mother. That should be interesting. I’m British and as a race Brits are not best known for hugging. Stiff upper lips and football hooliganism, yes. Hugs, no. But I’m going to remain open to the experience ;) The Indian railway has a special emergency ticketing system whereby they hold back some seats on each train for latecomers to book. These are made available 2 days before the departure date, but you have to be online or at the travel office first thing in the morning otherwise they get sold quickly. We didn’t have any luck today, so will try again tomorrow. It’s been great being on the beach for a few weeks, but it’s time for fresh experiences and to immerse ourselves more fully in Indian culture again. We went to buy ice cream at a beach restaurant today that had been recommended to us, and as we sat down an older woman with dreadlocks at a table opposite began to blatantly stare at us. My response was to raise my hand in a wave, smile and say hello to increase da peace. She shot me a scathing look and said “Do I know you?” Oh dear, not quite the result I was hoping for. I replied that despite knowing it is highly unorthodox for Westerners to greet each other I felt I should give it a shot (as I have been inspired by my interactions with the easy going local population to break out of that aloof and unhelpful conditioning). She huffed, shook her head and rolled her eyes before studiously looking down at the table. I believe my heroic effort to shatter norms resulted in what is commonly referred to as an epic fail ;) Time to move on to pastures new - we’re ready to leave the tourist resorts and head back into the chaos of India.... Boom boom.