Trip Start Apr 01, 2008
Trip End Jul 15, 2012

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Flag of India  , Goa,
Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The highlight of our train ride to Goa was being introduced to the concept and practice (courtesy of my sister Bob - ever the one to push the limits) of having a full and extremely refreshing body wash, prior to getting into bed.  This involved locking oneself in the bathroom (which if done in the early stages of the journey was still relatively clean), with a bar of soap, the bottom section of a  plastic water bottle, a towel and a change of clothes.  Twenty minutes later we emerged from our respective bathrooms, feeling like a million dollars, ready for a great nights sleep.  Admittedly it caused a few stares, but given that Indians spend most of their time staring unashamedly anyway, it felt good to give them something worthy of attention.  Needless to say Anna and I both insisted on having a top bunk and after hiring a pillow and sheet each for a pittance, we fell into a deep and much needed sleep. 

Once in Goa, we went to find Kuhn's friend Shan, a yogi that he had met some years previous.  Shan and his band of yogic disciples were kind enough to take us into their home, feed us and discuss the many and varied problems of the world.  It shames me to admit that the biggest problem that I could see on arrival were the chinchillas living under one of the girls armpits.  Needless to say, I bit my tongue and went in search of enlightenment at the nearby bodhi tree (village bar). 

It was a great opportunity for Kuhn to see his old friend and mentor again and for the rest of us it was a chance to sit in a bar on the beach, drinking pina coladas, sampling everything on the menu and occasionally making the short walk to the sea.  We were soon joined by the indomitable Rosie Bradley (a good friend of my sister) and her equally hilarious friend who were staying in Goa for Christmas and New Year.  It was a perfect place to unwind and after a month long yoga course, nothing appealed more than undoing all the good work.  

This left one more rail marathon, from Goa to Bangalore and then onto Chennai before we made the upsetting but unavoidable flight to Sri Lanka.  We had looked into boats, determined to stick to our no-fly rule, but soon discovered that short of jumping in an illegal fishing boat to Jaffna with a load of immigrant Tamils, there was no other option (clearly Anna was keen, but I had to put my foot down).  The last official ferry stopped running in 1982 due to the increased hostilities in the North of Sri Lanka, so we were somewhat stumped.  As such, due to the increase in our carbon footprint, we have both agreed to cross the next continent on foot!!

AR - I haven't agreed to anything of the sort!
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