Breakfast at the Hotel Asma Tower, Calicut.
The first night’s stop was in Calicut, the birthplace of calico.
Calicut was founded almost 1,000 years ago. Strong links with Arab traders soon developed and the city has a sizeable Muslim community.
Vasco da Gama led a Portuguese fleet to the port at the end of the 15th century. This marked the beginning of European interest in the Malabar coast.
Having taken chai masala, we strolled along sea-front at sunset.
Inspected the camels
Then bought a kite
And flew it.
The Calicut boat jetty at sunset.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away”.
Ozymandias. Percy Bysshe Shelley. Published 1818.
“I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity..” Ecclesiastes 1, 14.