Yesterday was the first day of the big adventure, and like anyone who’s leaving their entire life behind, I approached it with a mixture of excitement, nervousness and stone cold fear. Ignoring the fear emotion entirely, I took a deep breath, handed over my passport at the Air India check in desk and made my peace that there was no turning back now.
The flight to Trivandrum, in the South of India took us via the sprawling metropolis of Mumbai, and even though it was pitch dark when we flew over, I can tell Mumbai is going to be one spicy meatball. It is huge. Even the bus ride from the International Terminal to the Domestic Terminal (10 minutes in low traffic) took us through a little of the city and showed off its utter mayhem.
Our flight from London was delayed by about an hour which put pressure on our connection but allowed us just over an hour to collect our bags, get the bus across town and check in for our next flight. There was the expected chaos on the bus, ‘sorry it’s full’… ‘but our flight is in half an hour!’, but eventually we were allowed to cram onto the vehicle (in a predictable sweaty mess).
So I shouldn’t be surprised that on arrival into Trivandrum, all those promises from the check in staff at Mumbai airport revealed themselves to be a lie, and our bags never made their final journey down that conveyor belt. Oh dear.
A handful of other passengers also hailing from London joined us in standing in silent bewilderment for a while before finding someone to report this to. At this time I had passed the “24 hours of being awake” mark and found this all hysterical, to the point of actually lolling. I lolled. A lot.
What followed next was a comical display from the airport manager and his secretary at Trivandrum as he panicked and fussed and asked us to sit down and be comfortable about twenty times, when all that was needed was to fill in a quick form in the hope that someone will load the bags onto tomorrow’s flight. Easy peasy.
So we filled in the form and went on our merry way through Kerala’s beautiful countryside.
First impressions of Kerala? Well, I have never seen so many palm trees. Really. Our driver took us the back route through the villages and back waters and I can say that of all the countries I’ve travelled to so far, that I saw more palm trees on that drive than any other. It’s simply gorgeous. I’m so looking forward to exploring!
Will our bags make it today? Only time will tell. But hurry up please bags, we’re getting stinky!