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On the Road – Kerala, India Transcript

Corey: [00:00:00] Ladies and gentlemen, the small worlds podcast. My name is choreo Flanagan,

Lianne: [00:00:18] and I am Leanne Davidson. We had lunch.

Corey: [00:00:20] Go ahead and tell us what’s on the pod today.

Lianne: [00:00:22] Good. So today we’re going to cover one of our favorite spots in India, thus far Corolla.

Corey: [00:00:30] So

Lianne: [00:00:30] we’re going to cover coachee, the backwaters VAR color, and the nifty little meditation workshop that we did near through Avenger.

We went and found us in.

Corey: [00:00:39] Yeah, that’s right. So you can always support us by listening and subscribing and reviewing. Wherever you get your podcasts and make sure you’re following us on Instagram

Lianne: [00:00:50] and show you what sir, make sure you’re following

Corey: [00:00:54] on Instagram. Keep up with our travels. We are in the lovely Sri Lanka as we are recording this right now at small worlds on Instagram and Facebook and as always http://www.smallworldspodcast.com.

We just released an amazing video that we did in Nepal and C should go to the website, check that out and let us know what you think.

Lianne: [00:01:14] This episode is brought to you by avail car sharing. Rental cars are so 2019 and 2020. We borrow cars instead of renting cars and avail car sharing makes driving easy by connecting locals who have those cars with travelers who need those cars.

Corey: [00:01:32] Yep. They are brought to you and supported by Allstate insurance coverage on every trip. And now avail is available in Denver, Chicago, Phoenix, Houston, Dallas, and salt Lake

Lianne: [00:01:44] city. Many

Corey: [00:01:45] cities use the promo code, small worlds to get $15 off when you book a car and learn more today@availcarsharing.com.

That’s a V a I L car sharon.com.

So let’s start with five things to know about Corolla. It is the most Southern state or the tip of India. If you will,

Lianne: [00:02:12] just the tip.

Corey: [00:02:13] If you are heading over to Sri Lanka afterwards, as many people seem to do, it’s going to be one of the cheaper places to fly from. And do note that at this time, there is not a boat connecting you to Sri Lanka, which seems like.

And the logical thing to do is it’s not very far, but there’s not. So you got to fly or you can probably pay a fishermen to paddle. Yeah. Blow up

Lianne: [00:02:34] your little Explorer and paddle yourself. Yeah. Give it a go. Who knows? Coachee is the world’s first completely solar powered APPA. Exciting

Corey: [00:02:43] fun facts. One of the best things to do down there is to go explore the backwaters.

The main one is an Alipay. There are other quieter places that you can.

Lianne: [00:02:54] Yeah. If you have the time to explore this 900 kilometers of network waterways, you can also kick it up from Kottayam and Calum.

Corey: [00:03:01] Yeah. LP is just the main hub and it happens to be the one that we went to. Corolla is also India’s number one, exporter of spices, mainly pepper, but there’s many others as well.

And they’ve been part of the spice trade for generations,

Lianne: [00:03:14] generations, and generations. Not just confined to backgrounds and cultural interests. However, there are also a bunch of different animal sanctuaries to go and spot some wildlife on a toe

Corey: [00:03:24] tigers, elephants, a plethora of

Lianne: [00:03:29] lots of tourists.

Corey: [00:03:30] Yeah.

You can see tourists from all over the place.

Lianne: [00:03:32] Go check it out.

Oh, the backwaters, I hear you say, well, the backwaters are a beautiful network of large and small rivers into twining, surrounded by rice patties and jungle. And there’s a load of communities that live on the side of the rivers.

Corey: [00:03:52] Yeah, it’s pretty cool. Just to see these kids doing their daily commuting, walking around the rivers.

There’s people bathing in the river. And

Lianne: [00:03:58] I think probably urinating and them too, which seems kind of counterproductive. But these are communities with shops and cafes and some really nice houses.

Corey: [00:04:05] Actually. They like to call themselves the Venice of the East. Which may be a little bit of a stretch.

Lianne: [00:04:11] Hey, I let you hold my hand for five minutes on the boat.

There

Corey: [00:04:14] was some touching, pretty romantic, mostly in Ella Palooza. This is the name of the region. And then Alipay is the name of the town where most of these tourists kickstart. But last year, as we mentioned earlier, You can find them in other cities too.

Lianne: [00:04:29] There’s a huge range of boats, but overall, this is an elegant excursion.

Some of the boats has like seven bedrooms are entire families. A large groups of friends can enjoy multiple days on the water. You can get private chef rooms have AC relaxing days, just cruising the canals, getting fucked up on to hot, not hot Teddy Teddy on the stand, just toady. But they’re up to like $500 a night.

We looked onward and wished we had a casual $500 to throw away. Didn’t we,

Corey: [00:04:55] we did. But we also, we equally wanted to go the other way and we wanted to, we were, we were dead set on trying to get a local fishermen in a sarong to rows around

Lianne: [00:05:06] patently. That’s not a thing.

Corey: [00:05:07] We somehow couldn’t find a guy in a sarong.

So we just scratched the whole idea. Yeah, but I mean,

Lianne: [00:05:14] if we had, we also would have helped him paddle

Corey: [00:05:17] river people of Corolla, fashion is important. Come on.

Lianne: [00:05:21] The sovereign was a key point of that.

Corey: [00:05:23] We should have bought us wrong and brought it to the Fisher,

Lianne: [00:05:25] got the driver to her

Corey: [00:05:26] by mistake. You can also go in the other direction and rent a kayak with, or without a guide that you can propel yourself around that way.

You definitely wouldn’t want to fall in which we saw and felt so bad for this young.

Lianne: [00:05:38] Oh my God. Bless him. We did a we did a four hour. Cruise on a very comfortable boat with just the two of us at sunset, just out of, you know, that was what was available. Super affordable. We were able to see all of the canal sizes because we went out on this first boat, which was so comfortable, padded out with cushions.

And then we were transferred to a smaller boat for an hour to get us into the smallest canals. And I think it was around. $10 us each.

Corey: [00:06:05] Yeah, it wasn’t much at all. We went around, we went out to the main porch where you see the big houseboats, talk to those guys for a little bit, but they weren’t willing to give us the deal that we were looking for.

So we just started walking up and down the canal and found a guy that was willing to work with us. And so we got exactly what we wanted, which was for our cruise around sunset. It was just lovely. You need to note it can get pretty busy, especially during peak,

Lianne: [00:06:29] which is around December, January. We do believe

Corey: [00:06:32] We think we were there what a week, two weeks before Christmas. And it wasn’t terribly busy. So probably things just really start peeking around Christmas, new years. It’s definitely a honeymooner spot unusually quiet for the time of year, but. Overall lovely experience must do if you’re ever in Corolla and it is the main business.

So it’s really easy to find people to get you out on those canals.

Lianne: [00:06:57] I mentioned the solar powered EPO, which is in cocci. So let’s talk about 24 hours in cocci city. Most people arrive either here or in  and then had.

Corey: [00:07:10] Yeah, we went to coachee first as we were coming down from Goa. And it just made sense from there we headed South, but we stayed in Fort coachee for a few days and we would recommend you just get into town and find a home stay, which is the most popular form of accommodation.

Lianne: [00:07:25] It’s probably the wisest choice because then you get some of that delicious home cook Indian food, and you can have a good old chinwag with a local and learn more about the area

Corey: [00:07:33] Americans are. Chinwag I’m told. Different definitions around the world, the Australians, it’s a yawn

Lianne: [00:07:40] yarn. That’s what you call string.

Corey: [00:07:43] Yeah. Yarn.

Lianne: [00:07:44] Yeah. Yarn. Yarn for yawn Yon.

Corey: [00:07:48] All right. Thank you for clearing that up. Any who you’re going to want to check in, drop your bags in. The first thing that we recommend is that you ask your host to book a ticket for the Catholic college dance that evening,

Lianne: [00:08:00] and that later in the perk.

Corey: [00:08:02] Definitely. So head out to the streets, find yourself a two, two driver, and have them take you around to all the historical sites on the Fort coachee Island, museums, temples churches.

You can see the original way that they do laundry in the area.

Lianne: [00:08:16] The original way of ironing. This old lady had like coal powered, I guess it was literally iron, but he was so heavy. She was strong.

Corey: [00:08:25] She was like in her late seventies. And I don’t know if I could

Lianne: [00:08:27] have lifted. I let’s say tried and I

Corey: [00:08:29] couldn’t lift it.

Yeah, it was wild. Then you’re going to go check out the Chinese fishing nets be, have be very wary of their scams

Lianne: [00:08:36] on the fact that they’re not actually Chinese.

Corey: [00:08:39] Well, the Mongolian Portuguese, Chinese. It’s a difference in the end. It’s the same as a group.

Lianne: [00:08:45] That’s why this labor by Chinese,

Corey: [00:08:47] typical Chinese, this whole tour really shouldn’t cost you more than three or 400 rubies.

Lianne: [00:08:52] And one thing to remember is that they took, took drivers will also insist to bring you by shops because they have this deal with the shops to receive a fuel coat coupon or like rice and stuff. It is good to help them out. We didn’t mind for a little while, but after the ninth shop, it does get annoying.

So once he well fed up D just letting them know, and they’re pretty cool about it.

Corey: [00:09:11] Yeah. They seem to be coaches pretty hot and humid. So after this tour, which should probably gonna take you anywhere from two to three hours might be a good time to go relax in the AC, back at the homestay or check out one of the mini classic coffee shops around town.

This place had an abundance of them. 5:00 PM. You’re going to head to the Catholic college dance to watch the performers applying their own elaborate makeup. Six to seven is the performance it’s singing. There’s intense percussion going on.

Lianne: [00:09:41] And these guys, they are heavy, but my my they light on their feet.

Corey: [00:09:46] Sumo ballerinas.

Lianne: [00:09:48] I can’t believe how graceful they are. I would know nothing about being graceful

Corey: [00:09:51] and well, these guys are essentially professionally trained actors that spend years perfecting their facial control to convey the mood.

Lianne: [00:09:59] Pretty cool. It’s definitely a must do. It was such a unique experience for us to do.

I was just like a sensory overload. But it was very enjoyable.

Corey: [00:10:08] Yeah. After that head back to your home, stay for the traditionally home cooked dinner.

Lianne: [00:10:13] You have to try the fish masala. They basically spice up this fish, cook it in a banana leaf on it.

Corey: [00:10:21] And some spicy masala sauce and some, some sauteed veggies, a little rice on the side, you got yourself a really good meal.

Get yourself a good night of sleep, wake up and find a yoga class in the morning before heading out because I did it and it was probably one of the most intense yoga classes that I have had.

Lianne: [00:10:38] I slept. My hallway threw it in the AC.

Corey: [00:10:41] They also offer evening classes for the non morning folk,

Lianne: [00:10:45] which I also didn’t go to

reminder, reminder, reminder, don’t forget to subscribe, rate, and review and tell your friends, tell them,

Corey: [00:10:57] just tell them. So Corolla is very well known for its food. It has got a little bit different flavor than the rest of India, but it is fucking delicious. Let me tell

Lianne: [00:11:11] everything is mixed to be rich with coconut being the main ingredient and there’s spice levels that pumping.

Corey: [00:11:18] Yeah, restaurants in the  area. And along the coast generally have daily catch displayed where you can choose a fish and how you would like it to be prepared. There’s seafood everywhere. You can find blue Marlin, red snapper, proms, crab, whatever the hell you want.

Lianne: [00:11:34] I suggest the red snapper or the blue Marlin.

It’s the same prepared in the banana leaf with the local summer salad

Corey: [00:11:40] style. We really fell in love with that dish.

Lianne: [00:11:44] We haven’t had protein for so long and it felt sick.

Corey: [00:11:47] Yeah. There expand your horizons, dive into their different spices. This place has such good food and they are passionate about it. So give it a shot.

Do

Lianne: [00:11:58] it,

Corey: [00:12:04] so let’s talk a little bit about in fact color by Carla is a lovely little backpacker destination and a touristic.

Lianne: [00:12:11] It’s absolutely stunning with 50 meters and 50 foot red stone class getting straight up from the

Corey: [00:12:17] beach. Yeah. There’s all the shops, restaurants and accommodations are up on the cliffs while the ocean and the beaches down below.

Ocean is great for sunbathing. It’s decent for swimming, although there’s really strong current. So be aware of that, but those strong currents make it an excellent body surfing spot. You can actually grab a surf board and surf, but it’s pretty tough to find a break that doesn’t close

Lianne: [00:12:41] and to rent a surf.

Bud is actually pretty expensive. The

Corey: [00:12:44] so expensive

Lianne: [00:12:46] in India. Expensive. It’s the same as renting a bird in a Western country. One bonus is the sunsets were amazing.

Corey: [00:12:54] Definitely. If you follow us on our social media, this is where those amazing Arabian sunsets were all captured.

Lianne: [00:13:00] It’s a Holy city, so there’s not much for a party scene.

And you do have to ask restaurants for special menu for the adult beverages. And that’s only if the place has worked to deal with the local popup.

Corey: [00:13:11] I love a good bribe. You know

Lianne: [00:13:13] what it works in. Some places

Corey: [00:13:14] really love a good he’s been

Lianne: [00:13:16] bribing me into this relationship. The whole time

Corey: [00:13:18] it’s working. This is a pretty famous spot for yoga and massage, particularly a style called are your Vedic, healing and massage.

Lianne: [00:13:26] She can expect to pay around 10 to $20 us for an hour massage, super relaxing, and on the cheap side,

Corey: [00:13:34] really like 10 days. And we really felt like we kind of got caught up on our budget.

Lianne: [00:13:39] Yeah. And I’ll tell you what these two guys who gave us a massage didn’t have a clue what they were doing. Cause we went for the $5 message.

Second time of let a teenage boy rubbed me down.

Corey: [00:13:49] Interesting. We’ll talk about this off air. It’s really easy to get to Wirkkala from either Trivandrum in the South or Ella Puzo or coachee up North. Something that we’d recommend doing is a little half day trip to the bird statue. It’s the jet Teo earth center.

Which we have our own little qualms about them calling into earth center.

Lianne: [00:14:10] They wouldn’t let us take our water bottles up. Wait, so you have to hike up these steps while you didn’t have to about kilometer, but it’s how, you know, it’s in the middle of the day and they wouldn’t let us take our water bottles up.

And we say, Oh, well, why? And they say, Oh, we have to buy when you’re up there. And we’re like, so you want us to buy more plastic bottles? Call yourself a nerve center. Not very earthly

Corey: [00:14:33] mentioned, but it’s really cool. Yeah. They’ve been working on this carving of this bird for 10 years. They pretty much just.

Carved a bird out of a giant monolith stone in the mountain side. It’s definitely still in progress as of December, 2019. There’s going to be other things that you can do there. They’re going to have a museum, a little amphitheater built

Lianne: [00:14:53] a virtual reality games room. Okay.

Corey: [00:14:55] Full on family adventure park.

It’s going to be freaking awesome. Five to $15 per person. As of the recording of this podcast. There’s so many different things to do, but the views up at the top. Remarkable. So definitely too.

Lianne: [00:15:08] And it is actually best to go in the evening, cause it’s a bit cooler. You get the sunset views and there’s evening performances happening as well.

Corey: [00:15:16] So if our color overall great place, we loved it. Plenty of things that you can get out and do outside of the town as well, but great spot to hang out, just get a tan, hang on the beach. Yeah.

Let’s give a little couple bonus tips here.

Lianne: [00:15:38] E E

Corey: [00:15:40] There’s definitely more to do in Corolla. We spent most of our time on the coast, but if you had inland to the gets, that’s a mountainous region. You’re going to see tea plantations up in Monarch. There’s going to be plenty of tracking for you to do.

And as we mentioned earlier, there’s wildlife sanctuaries where you can see a variety of bird, life, elephants, and tigers. If you’re lucky, these there’s a couple of these throughout, so you can check those out. If you’ve got the time

Lianne: [00:16:04] overall, it’s a great place to visit with international airports in both coachee and Trivandrum, flights are affordable, and it’s a good way to ease your way into India.

It’s a bit less crowded and the people are so friendly.

Corey: [00:16:16] So friendly. Like almost to the point where you’re questioning the friendliness.

Lianne: [00:16:20] Why, why, why?

Corey: [00:16:21] But we think after our time there, it was genuine.

Lianne: [00:16:24] We actually asked one of our homestay guys about it and he just said, no, this is what people are liking Corolla.

So they’re just delightful. Really? Yeah,

Corey: [00:16:30] absolutely. So just about an hours train ride South of our collar, you have the bigger city of Trivandrum. We went to a beach just to the. West of there. I think it was and did a meditation workshop for a few days of relaxation,

Lianne: [00:16:45] CCL. It was an interesting experience because neither of us can sit still for all quiet for any prolonged periods of time.

It was something I nearly got the giggles in the first time and were wondering around the room, pretending to meditate.

Corey: [00:17:00] 20 minutes of sitting there. Meditating another 20 minutes of getting up and doing a walking meditation, which is essentially just following each other around a room in complete silence with Leanne.

And I try our best not to make eye contact so we can keep a straight face. And then another 20 minutes of sitting meditation, I will say that. It was a struggle.

Lianne: [00:17:22] It really was, but it was also very, I don’t want to say relaxing, but it was like you emptied your mind. And there was nothing after, you know, like an emptied auntie.

Corey: [00:17:33] I really did not empty my mind. My mind was going a mile a minute

Lianne: [00:17:36] afterwards.

Corey: [00:17:38] Yeah.

Lianne: [00:17:39] It just felt like I felt like what more could I possibly think?

Corey: [00:17:41] That’s true. I went through all my thoughts, but yeah, it was, it was interesting. One of the things that our our guru. Sure. That

Lianne: [00:17:50] sounds cool. She was, she was an angel, but let’s call her a girl.

Cause that sounds cool.

Corey: [00:17:56] So our meditation guru and one of the first things she told us was. To just stay focused on your breathing and ignore all these little things that come up like itches

Lianne: [00:18:07] or mosquito.

Corey: [00:18:09] Yeah. If a mosquito lands on, just watch it and wonder, Hmm. What’s this little guy up to,

Lianne: [00:18:14] he’s fucking stuck in your blood and

Corey: [00:18:18] Yeah. And then he’s going to leave. I mean, itchiness, I’m going to have to worry about the itching, so it just, it wasn’t going to work out in the end. We gave it a shot. I, I think that there was something to learn from it just about slowing down for a couple hours a day and

Lianne: [00:18:32] not overreacting to emotional responses that you get just breathe and just empty a bit.

Corey: [00:18:37] There was definitely something that we could learn from it, but it was a it was a unique experience to say the least. I would

Lianne: [00:18:42] definitely recommend it to people just to try. Another thing that we actually ended up doing here was a bit of medical tourism.

Corey: [00:18:50] I I got buttoned plants. Great. I did well. I was getting weird, looks at the beach and Leanne told me that’s what it was.

So she convinced me to spend the money and I got them cheap guys. I don’t think it’s silicone. I think it’s still a comb, but just as well. It’s great. So far. Anyway, seriously, we went to a dentist there and we had some minor, major work done.

Lianne: [00:19:12] Yeah. Yeah. I had some major work done. We went in on the day.

We were flying Tisha Lanka two days later and I’ve been searching long and wide hard and wide, wide and far. That’s

Corey: [00:19:21] the expression you remember from Our time in Nepal, we had to delay our Everest Trek because Leanne was having some issues with her teeth.

Lianne: [00:19:29] Yeah. Yes. I needed a 3d x-ray of my wisdom teeth.

Cause I have some awkward impacted wisdom teeth and yeah, so basically I went in, I went in for a teeth, clean, found out they had a 3d x-ray I’ve been searching for, I got the x-ray and then they remove the two lower wisdom teeth on the same day. Everything was super clean. Everything. I felt very safe.

The, the equipment was really modern. It was actually way more modern than my dentist back in the UK. And I will say though, But they do give you a local anesthetic, obviously, but the laws for sedation might be a bit different here because I didn’t get any sedation whatsoever. And that’s the first time I’ve ever had work done properly on my teeth.

So it was a bit

Corey: [00:20:11] traumatic just looking to catch a buzz. Really.

Lianne: [00:20:15] I was terrified

Corey: [00:20:18] that Leanne came out right away and was a little bit. Suspect of the dentists of the dental surgeons bedside manner. Oh

Lianne: [00:20:27] my God. It fucking hurt. Right. So it hurts. And anyway, so done and I had a bit of a weird infection in one of them.

So, you know, her even more on anyway, he just start slapping my cheek. I see it. Wasn’t so bad. And I’m like, are you away? You just spent an hour and. However long just ripping my molas from my mouth. And he says, slapping my cheeks. The say, no, it’s okay. It’s okay. Not the fucker, but you know what? It costs me less than $600 for the x-rays complicated surgery, removing the teeth.

I had laser assistance at clean painkillers and stuff for afterwards. So yeah, overall, it wasn’t terrible. I’ve actually finally recovered. The only negative thing I will say about it is that I couldn’t enjoy any of the delicious food for the first week in Sri

Corey: [00:21:12] Lanka, regardless of this. I know it kind of sounds negative, but we would highly recommend this dentist.

It was very, very good facilities, extremely professional, and their followup and communication has been pretty top-notch. We, I got a teeth cleaning. It was great. I think that the facilities are just as good, if not better than anywhere in Western countries. And it’s just so fucking cheap. So from the area looking to save some money on some dental work, take a look in our show notes for the name of the company.

I have had a few experiences with medical tourism personally. Besides this one, it was a hernia operation in Tiawana about a decade ago.

Lianne: [00:21:48] Coincidentally about the same amount of time. He’s only had one kidney for

Corey: [00:21:52] completely unrelated. Regardless we recommend it. Check out the show notes. If you’re in India, we did quite a bit of research.

It seems like a great spot to jump into some medical tourism. Look to go ahead and think avail for their continued service

Lianne: [00:22:08] and another cheeky reminder to subscribe and review. Tell a friend, tell

Corey: [00:22:12] a friend guys and tell them to go check out the small worlds website, http://www.smallworldspodcast.com to keep up with any info we’ve got coming out there

Lianne: [00:22:21] and to see our travels live, not so in the flesh.

Be sure to follow us on Instagram at small worlds podcast. And it’s the same name on Facebook who would’ve thought.

Corey: [00:22:31] So YouTube, we’ve got some pretty cool travel videos starting to accumulate. So go check those on, let us know what you think. And as always.

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