Sunday, February 8, 2009

beautiful cochi

after spending a week in kumily we headed down the mountains back to the heat and humidity of the coast. we have been in cochi for 5 days now and leaving tomorrow, my friend kim who i have been with the past month in kerela is heading home tomorrow and i am heading up the coast to explore northern kerala. we have been staying in fort cochi, which is a small village like area, you can take a ferry over to ernakulam which is more city like. the beach here is just used for fishing, they use chinese fishing nets which are huge nets that are lowered into the water along the beach and then lifted up after 5 minutes or so. they don't seem to catch much from them anymore, just enough to sell to the tourists. you can buy the fish then go across the street and another guy cooks it up for you, very yummy!

one night we went to a kathakali show which is like a play with no words, they just express themselves through their eyes and movements. the makeup they put on first though is amazing and takes an hour and a half each night. another night we went to a north indian classical music concert, there are lots of cultural things going on here in kerala. today we went to jewtown, cochi used to have a large jewish community and they have a beautiful synagog here, unfortunately no photos allowed. kim has also been doing allot of shopping as she is leaving so i've been accompanying her and trying not to spend any money, which is hard.

we have been staying at a homestay here, it's a bit more expensive but breakfast and dinner are included, and it's the best food i've had yet in india. i wish everyone could experience keralean food at one time, it's nothing like indian food as we know it in north america. it's much more fresh tasting, not so saucy. for dinner we have chapattis and rice with at least 5-6 different "masalas" most served at room temp or warm. masala can mean anything here, usually a mixture of some sort. allot of grated coconut mixed with grated beets or carrots, green beans or okra, and a bit of curd, red onion, fresh curry leaves and mustard seeds and just lightly sauteed. we have fish almost every night as well and papaya and pineapple for dessert. he let me watch him cook the other day and make the chapattis so hopefully i can do it again at home, if i can find the ingredients!

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