Arty Cochi – little cockroaches & big jewellery!

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Cochin is a big city but at first sight I wasn’t expecting it to look so industrial. I then quickly realised that Cochin also has lots of little islands so there are boats and little ports all over.
Our hotel was based in a shopping area (oh dear…) and only 5 minute walk from the ferry terminal to take us exploring…
We get our bearings with a morning boat tour. The tour is only an hour late heading out…not bad going for India…our guide thinks he is hilarious and talks a mixture of Hindi and English, he laughs a lot at his own jokes but we get the gist.
He informs us that we must all put our life jackets on…I think errr noooo ( it’s so hot) and I turn round to see Sarah is already wearing hers and not only that…it’s making a nice pillow…she’s asleep again!
We visit the Dutch church there, the Jewish quarter, old Cochin and the famous Chinese fishing nets. We all enjoyed old Cochin and its relaxed arty feel, so head back over there for lunch and cake ( thanks Caroline…it was lovely! )
All of the stores there are like labyrinths…they just kept going…some housed massive sculptures, paintings, and lots of furniture fit for a palace! We went into one riverside bar that had a massive boat inside…just for display…

The Chinese fishing nets were definitely worth a visit although I’m not sure how many actually make a living from it as opposed to making a living from showing tourists how they work…
They are huge and all the men who worked on them had us all helping and attempting to sing along with them. Some of the fish they caught were in buckets at the side and a few of the group hold them and pose with them for pictures but I decided against that one…especially when I saw one of those puffer fish ( probably not the real name!) imagine if he had puffed up in my hand…didn’t want to chance throwing him up in the air…

During our time in Cochi I did pop into the shops…obviously for necessities…errr to begin with…
I went into a store which sold shampoo, sun lotion, that type of thing – it was a bit like a mini department store for beauty products… it was small and there were far too many staff…

As I walked in, one guy gave me a tray ( he had to demonstrate what it was for as I kept thinking I was going to line up for school dinners or something) then every single woman on each section of counter ( we’re talking like 1 meter long) was trying to sell me something. I just wanted sun lotion and they all had different types! Finally when it came to pay…one counter was there for a summary of payment…one counter to actually pay at…another for wrapping in paper…then ANOTHER for a bag…totally crazy…I just couldn’t wait to get out of there!

BUT then…we stumbled upon…a massive jewellery shop…it was like a supermarket dedicated to jewels! Every type you can imagine and more…( yes Kel, you would have loved it! )Some Indian people love to decorate their babies in jewels, a tradition dating back many years and because of this there is an entire section dedicated to children’s jewellery…so tiny and cute…and just a bit over the top to me. We didn’t get anything else done that day as we spent nearly 2 hours in there!

It rained during the night in Cochi and I had visitors…little coach roaches in the bathroom…and were there are babies there are parents and uncles and sisters…you get my point…it completely freaked Sarah out and she was straight on the phone to reception. They immediately came up, sprayed the bathroom and left us with the dead carcass…lovely.

Noelle, one of the Mexican girls had been given a bed on the floor ( they shared a triple room) and when she heard about the cockroaches she freaked out too.
So whilst in search of wifi we ended up in another rather nice hotel checking out the rooms there. Although it was a bargain, I couldn’t justify the cost and neither did the others so Sarah and Noelle moved out and I was left alone with more little cockarachas…

We have been quite lucky with hotels so far and I’m trying to be more brave with all the insects etc as I know there are bigger and meaner ones awaiting me else were…so I’m quite proud of myself for sticking it out…even if I did have a few strange dreams that night!

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