I’ve been a bit slack with the blog and the writing course this month (I’m 2 and a half weeks behind on the course…) but that’s because I’ve had a guest. One of the best things about living abroad is that you get visitors. It’s usually the braver friends and family who see your new country as an opportunity to visit far away places.
Not only is it a little taste of the old country (invariably there is a request for supplies) but it’s also a chance to show your guest what you’ve learnt about your new home.
So, what did we do? Well, lots of stuff!
My chum is an excellent guest/traveller. On the day she arrived, after a 9 hour flight, we went to lunch. We visited Mount Mary Church and St Andrews Church in Bandra and walked along Bandstand. In the evening we went to yoga and then I let her go to sleep. She got up early the next morning and came riding with me – I rode, she walked round the racecourse. We visited South Mumbai and walked around the Hanging Gardens on Malabar Hill. We remarked on the way people had squeezed themselves into the smallest patches of shade to have their picnics. We were invited to take photos of a huge banyan tree in the Parsi funerary site; The Tower of Silence and promptly shooed away by a possibly bogus security guard. Oh what larks!
I managed to get sunstroke and had to stay in bed the next day, but she went out for a walk armed with a Google Map. She also went for lunch with the H. She even went to yoga the next morning with the H while I was still wallowing in my pit!
We had lunch at the famous Parsi cafe; The Britannia and had our photo taken with the 95 year old (or thereabouts) owner who asked us to pass on his regards Queen Elizabeth. We rode a train into the Victoria Terminal and had our photo taken by curious locals. And we took lots of tuks. Tuks to yoga, tuks with the H to go to dinner (v. snug) and tuks back from Carter Road with the H and the dogs…incredibly snug!. Oh we do love a tuk ride and the constant dilemma of tuk change.
As if that wasn’t enough fun, we also went to Goa for a couple of nights for a yoga retreat. We stayed in a very simple yoga centre that runs teacher training. We took our lessons with the youngsters that were taking the course. We flushed our noses out in the morning with a plastic nose trumpet (it’s actually called a neti pot) and ate a vegan diet. Although, while the youngsters were getting excited about the cornflakes for breakfast and enthusing over avocado and banana smoothies, we were having a cheeky ice cream in the evening after dinner…because that’s how we roll!
We walked along the beautiful beach, past the herds of sunbathing cows. We poked about in the sand flipping starfish the right way round. We had a very pleasant morning and afternoon in a beach lounge having second breakfast and a fine grilled snapper for lunch. We had a wonderful morning session of yoga listening to the sound of the rain. We properly set our bu-ttocks and cleared our minds. We explored strategies for not having to return home. We discussed income options; paddleboard yoga and cooking amongst others.
In hindsight, I think we should consider importing Boots Tropical Strength mosquito repellent. For the first time EVER I went to the beach and didn’t get bitten by a mosquito, and there were ALOT of mosquitos.
My chum went home yesterday and I’m a little sad. The 2 giant bars of chocolate have been eaten and my plans today are a lot more sedate than those of the last 10 days. No tuk rides scheduled.
However, the next guest arrives in January so enough time to get back on track with the writing course and not long before I get to do it all over again. Proper Huzzah!