We were out early on this day, after our breakfast of fruit, toast, sambar and idli. It was a nice walk down the hill and into town to catch a tuk tuk to take us back up the mountain to Doddabetta peak, at 8650 feet. This was probably the bumpiest, pothole ridden road I've ever experienced in a tuk tuk, or a car, for that matter. The views at the top were worth the ride to the summit. We explored the gardens and sampled some not so delicious chocolate candy and finally made our way up the circular staircase in the Telescope House.
Today was mostly a travel day spent in the car from Kochi, in the state of Kerala, to Ooty, or more correctly, Udhagamandalam, in the state of Tamil Nadu. Our breakfast was another delicious buffet at the Kochi Marriott, and knowing that we had a long car ride ahead, we ate our fill. The pickled pineapple was amazing. Rajesh was waiting at 8 a.m. sharp and we were ready with our luggage and said goodbye to Kochi.
On this day I literally woke up with the birds and spent about an hour listening to them as the sun came up. It's amazing how peaceful it can be at this time of the morning with only an occasional commuter boat slowing humming by or a distant dog barking to interrupt the birds. There are a few videos below I took that are mainly for listening since there's not much to see, but a lot to hear.
After stuffing ourselves with an amazing meal at the Mumbai Marriott breakfast buffet, we were off with a hotel car around 8 a.m., speeding towards the Mumbai National Airport and our Jet Airways flight to Kochi, in the state of Kerala. Our flight was pretty nice and lasted about 2 hours. We were met outside of the little Kochi airport by our driver, Rajesh, and in no time were headed toward the backwaters of Kerala. The drive to meet the boat in Alleppey lasted around 4 hours in air conditioned comfort, winding through small villages and a lot of very green countryside.
Adam, Stacy and I finally arrived in Mumbai after 20 something hours of flying and arrived at the very nice Marriott near the Mumbai airport. After being told that we could walk there and weighing the options of the mosquitos, heavy luggage, and generally not knowing where we were, we asked a helpful airport official who told us where to stand for the hotel car.