"Wading neck deep in a swamp, your revolver is neither use nor ornament until you have had time to clean it" Mary H. Kingsley (1897)

transport

Wanderlust..

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I have been home for less than a month but this afternoon saw young Anu packing my bags once more.
Vishu approaches:
one of Kerala’s two biggest Hindu festivals.
Festivals, I’ve promised he can enjoy with his family.

I shall enjoy it too – but not in Kerala.
When Anu goes home,
I go on my Indian travels.

Charlie, my agent, has been busy;
Robin, my travel-buddy, is ready.
Flights, cars, drivers, hotels, and perhaps even tents, are booked and confirmed.
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Mobility Issues

Transporting festival paraphernalia to and from the temple.

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Picture taken in Fort Cochin 


Fast-track

Making way for the vegetable express..

Unlike heaven, curry sometimes cannot wait..
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Pictures taken in Bazaar Road, Mattancherry.


The School Run

Or a latter-day Cinderella, perhaps..
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Picture taken in Cochin.


Let The Train Take The Strain

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A is the affable guard whom you square:
B is the “Bradshaw” which leads you to swear:
C is the corner you fight to obtain:
D is the draught of which others complain:
E are the enemies made for the day:
F is the frown that you wear all the way:

From The Tourist’s Alphabet by Mr Punch’s Railway Book

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Pictures taken while changing train, on my journey from Wiltshire to Cornwall, during the English summer.

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The Journey Is The Destination: Part 1

Ancient & Modern

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“Let your mind start a journey through a strange new world. Leave all thoughts of the world you knew before. Let your soul take you where you long to be…”

Erich Fromm

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Picture taken during my travels in Karnataka



Born To Be Wild?

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I lust.

But the object of my desire may be inappropriate for a man in his late fifties.

Am I physically capable of this partnership? After-all, I have enough titanium on-board to be mistaken for a Frank Gehry project.

What would my family say?

Will my friends laugh at an old man’s folly?

I must examine all the alternatives…

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Review the situation…

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Is this just a foolish infatuation?

My last attempt to recapture lost youth?

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Or am I looking at the real thing?

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Driving Downtown In The Rain

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I need to go downtown.

But looking out from my door, there is no escaping the monsoon.

All I can hear is the wind.

All I can see is the plentiful rain.

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Once it eases a little, deciding against the ferry, I take an auto:

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Business by the roadsides has quickly resumed.

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Work on the new bridge to the mainland has restarted.

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Only the fishing fleet remains anchored in enforced monsoon idleness.

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With errands completed,

I take the auto back across the bridge to sunshine,

colour

crowds

cattle

And all that remains of my umbrella.

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The Party’s Over

The season is over.

With the arrival of the rains, all but the most hardy of tourists have left.

Autos stand idle

Leaving their drivers time to sit and chat.

Commerce is quiet. The Kashmiri salesmen finally relax.

Lord Krishna prepares to be packed away,

while the souvenir shops close.

Focus drifts

And staff drift,

As hotels empty.

The clear-up begins.

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Crossed Lines

On a trip to collect tickets there are lines to be crossed.

Railway Lines

Lines of Ambassadors

And Lines of Autos.

Untidy Lines

Gas Lines

And Lines of Music