March 2, 2016
02.03.2016 - 02.03.2016 36 °C
Although I was so tired from all the walking and standing yesterday, I still woke up and heard fireworks at 4:30 am, as well as the Muslim call to prayer at 5:00 and then more fireworks at 5:30 am. These fireworks sounded almost as loud as at the site 3 km away. The windows rattled in the hotel. Soon it was time to get up and packed up to leave. We went out to the main road, hoping to catch a bus into Thrissur, but all the buses were jammed with festival attendees returning home and there was not room for us and our luggage. While we were standing at the side of the road, we saw Arjuna, my elephant, leaving town riding in a truck. They use big trucks like dump trucks to carry elephants around. We were told it costs 10,000 rupees to rent a elephant for a day or $2000 CAD. The elephants are kept by temples or private people year round and used in different temple festivals.
We got a tuk tuk (although they call them auto rickshaws here) to take us into the bus station in Thrissur. There we caught a bus to Palachi. 2 hours later we were in Palachi and had to cross a busy street to a different bus terminal to get the bus we wanted. This involved going down steps to a subway tunnel and then up the steps on the other side. Not a lot of fun with a suitcase that has been getting heavier for the whole trip, but we made it!
We made it just in time to catch a bus on to Palani. After another 2 hours or so, we arrived and changed stations again, although this time it was an easy walk across a parking lot. We were told there wouldn't be a bus to Kodaikanal until 6:30 pm. We didn't know whether to actually believe this or not, because our experience has shown that there are buses to everywhere almost all the time. But we didn't want to ride and arrive in the dark. So when a fixer offered us a ride in a taxi with another couple we took it. This was a lot more expensive, 800 rupees for both of us, but well worth it. We had a more comfortable ride up the hairpin turns of the mountain and got to our hotel before it was dark.
Unfortunately, our hotel had no WIFI for guests. And on doing more research that evening, it seems to be the norm here. A few hotels have WIFI in the lobby and there are internet cafes, where you can sit and use the internet for a price, but there is no food available.
We went out for supper and found a restaurant across the street from an internet cafe. So Don went over and got a password and then could search hotels with WIFI while we were at the restaurant. We found a couple of possibilities in our price range and will check them out tomorrow. On our way back to our hotel, we stopped in at a couple - one very expensive one and one cheaper one which only had WIFI in the lobby - and were told something about they use to have it in the rooms until people misused it.?? We don't know what that means - pornography?, terrorism? what? Anyway we gave it up for the day and went to bed.