Thursday, March 27, 2008

Running away in India

South Africa are touring India. We should all be excited about this. These are two big teams with players that not only understand the rules, but can use them to their advantage, too.

However, the excitement ends when you see the pitch. The groundsman didn’t so much as roll it out, tend it and make love to it, as is the normal custom, but he went to the nearest Dutch Restaurant and ordered an extra lifeless pankcake for this pitch.

The results can be seen in the gaping mouths of fans across the world: Graeme Smith, Neil McKenzie and a man with an upside down head scored runs.

In the Indians reply, Virender “My Arse Is Suprisingly Firm” Sehwag has already blitzed his way to 52 from 61 in an unbroken partnership of 82.

This looks like an intriguing match, but, by gum, the bowlers will have to work hard.

Right, now, the real point of this post. I’m thinking of going to India for a holiday in August. I have never been before, have a limited understanding of Indian geography and have only modest smatterings of French, German and Swahili. These languages, I understand, are not widely spoken in India.

So, people of the great blogosphere, where should I go? What should I do? And how should I do it?

18 comments:

Suave said...

I've never been, so can't really suggest anything travelwise.

But... I recently read a book called "Shantaram" by Gregory David Roberts, which is based almost entirely in India (mumbai, mainly).

I want to visit Mumbai now, to see what it's all about.

The Atheist said...

Apparently, it's all about Shaun Pollock these days.

miriam said...

I was thinking of going in September to watch some cricket.

Jrod said...

I think you should travel on the Darjeeling Limited, you could take Owen Wilson.

Anonymous said...

Wherever you go in India, make sure you have a local with you you can trust. It actually cuts both ways. That way you make sure you don't offend the decent locals with some obscure cultural gaffe and also make sure that the slimier ones among the locals know to keep away from you.

The best way to visit India is to go there with someone who's lived there.

Did you know that "thumbs up" is actually the equivalent of a middle finger in the middle east?

Dubaiwalla said...

If you're going to India, I suggest you visit the southern state of Kerala. It's utterly gorgeous, won't be as hot as the north during the summer, and has some infrastructure for tourists.

Aashrey said...

Try the hill stations- Shimla, Nainital, Mussoorie. The weather will be ideal. Or you can go further up north- camping and all.

Goa would have been an obvious choice if it wasn't always raining in August. December-Jan is superb for Goa.

Cheers. Hope it works out.

Miss Field said...

What's your email?

Sreehari said...

Doooode...plslink my blog onto your site..I've already linked your blog on mine,long back...

Thirucumaran said...

Cricinfo says that apparentlty the Indians were scared of the threat that Dale Steyn would've posed to the Indian batsmen had there been a bowling pitch so they decided to make it flat! What a whole load of hogwash! :@

John said...

If you come to Delhi or go to Bombay or Bangalore or Trivandrum, do check out my food blog for eating options. Let me know your email and I can give you a few more options.

The Atheist said...

Thank you all for the advice. I am acting upon it immediately. Being of Northern European stock, perhaps the South, if it is cooler at that time of year, sounds better for me.

Unfortunately, I won't be taking "a local" with me, just a mate, who's of similar wiltable ethniticity.

Do they have many Irish themed pubs in Kerala, then?

John said...

When you say Irish themed, do you mean get-hammered-and-beat-people-up-for-dubious-political-reasons? Then yes, there are several.

The Atheist said...

Just looking at some weather charts... India seems a bit wet during August?

Are there any parts that are more sensible to visit, at that time of year? Kerala seems nice, though. Isn't that where black pepper comes from?

I can bring my mum back pepper. That would have me in her good books for months.

John said...

Kerala is wet in August, but some say that Kerala is best seen in the rains. If you time it right, you may even be on a beach to catch the South West monsoon arrive. But if it gets to you, you can always leave and explore the Himalayas instead.

The Atheist said...

H'mmmmm... I get a lot of weather at home, and I'm not sure it'll be too fun being under more of the bloody stuff when I'm on holidays.

So, are you saying, that a sun-hungry heathen like me should keep away from soggy India in August?

Anonymous said...

Atheist,

The peninsula of India has mountains on all sides of the traingle, which monsoons generally can't pentrate. If you are on the windward side, there's lots of rain. If are on the leeward side, not much. You get lots and lots of sun. If you want a lot of dry sun. Visit Hyderabad. Shrivel you up in a couple of hours. Plus a healthy tan too. I would recommend the beaches at Vizag. It's on the other side of the monsoon and the sands are not the quicksands you see on some of Bombay's beaches.

If you are into hills, visit Ooty in the south, or Dehradun, Darjeeling etc. in the east. If you want something more exotic, visit Sikkim in the Himalayas, It borders China and resembles a pimple squeaking between Nepal and Bhutan and the official language of the state is English. So you won't have any problems getting around. You can actually make a trip to the China border, and see a bit of Tibet (I am not sure about the last part though)

But Kerala is best seen in rain. It's a different feeling seeing rain in the tropical forests - (though Kerala is not exactly tropical)

The Atheist said...

Thank you, Anon! That's very interesting. These places are all worth investigating.

It also nice to know that there will be some places that aren't soaking wet. It would remind me too much of home!

H'mmmm... I suppose it's just a question of deciding where to go. I only have about two weeks to fill!

But many thanks again!