To follow the story from beginning go from the first blog to last : Intro
‘Kerala God’s own country’ announced the email in Sush’s inbox. ‘Munnar, backwaters, Cochin. Kerala tourism invites …’ said the email.”Hmm…Kerala, it’s been long since I have been there, would be refreshing to see those places again” thought Sush seeing all those beautiful pictures in the mail.
Immediately she pinged Sammy…the sign showed away on gtalk…”ah…where does this guy go when I want to discuss imp stuff” thought Sush. She then called up her best friend Deepa who, from quite sometime wanted to go to kerala. Deepa was excited once she heard about it. She and a couple of friends from her hospital also were interested to come along (hospital…yeah you heard it right…a bunch of doctors they were, who I can never make out on how they study for 16 hours a day!!…hail the lord).
‘There he is” thought Sush as Sammy pinged back on the IM.
Sush: Hey do you want to go to kerala?
Sammy: Kerala? When? How? What?
Sush: Ok, here you go. I got promotional mail with some amazing pics and places about kerala. Will forward the mail about the details. Even Deepa and her friends are coming. You remember Deepa right? We met at the movie?
Sammy: Yeah…I remember her .So what will I a boy, alone do with a bunch of girls though I must say kerala with all you girls sounds fun 🙂
Sush: ha…ha…Deepus friend Rajesh is coming too. So I guess you are not so lucky after all 🙂
Sammy: Okie then. I myself have got a few leaves left, so why not. Kerala here we come.
Sush: Yeah here we come 🙂
“Sush, we are going on a 5 day trip to kerala not to US. What’s with this luggage” seeing 2 bags, 1 backpack said Sammy. ”Dude if I were going to US, I would travel with 2 huge bags not with these small bags. Its girls stuff. Just go and check if our flight to Cochin is on time” replied Sush. “And also keep your eyes open to see if you can spot Deepa, don’t know where this lady vanished “shouted Deepa’s friend Rajesh.
“The new Airport’s cool, but is too far away.500 bucks just to get to the airport!! Man too expensive” said Sush. Rajesh and Nina nodded in agreement. They were Deepus friends from Osmania general working as Interns.
“Hey Guys, want some nachos” shouted Deepu. “Found our lady near the snacks bar” said Sammy “and our flights boarding, so let’s get going”.
The Cochin airport was small and was hardly crowded except the current arrivals. You can hardly see any counters too.” You girls stay here while Rajesh and me will go and find out how to get to Munnar” said Sammy. They went to the Kerala Tourism counter and found a guy standing there holding some brochures. “Sir, can you tell us on how to get to Munnar and if they are any hotels you can suggest over there ”asked Sammy. The guy was happy that at last someone came to him. He immediately took out a map of Kerala and started off. He mentioned Munnar is 130 kms from Cochin and the best way is to take a taxi which would take around 4 hours and would charge something like 1200 Rs. He mentioned a couple of hotels in and around Munnar and gave his number if we wanted any help during the stay. “Friendly guy” thought Sammy, thanked him and went to the prepaid taxi counter to book a cab.
“The wind is awesome, it’s pure, fresh and playful. We don’t find such wind which smells trees and mountains back home” said Sush rolling the windows of their cab down. The route to Munnar was full of mountains, small villages, tea gardens.
The first stop was at a waterfall on the way which was supposed to be some famous spot. “Hey lets get into the waterfall” shouted everyone seeing the sight of water. “Sammy take some pics of us ‘said Sush running into the water first. The photo session started with everyone taking photos of everyone. “Pineapples seem to be fruit over here” said Sammy walking towards the pineapple stalls. They were charging 5 bucks for a plate full of neatly cut, sprinkled with salt-mirchi pineapples.
The next stop was a view point, which had a beautiful view of Munnar valleys. “I never knew there were so many shades in green” said Sush seeing the lush green valleys spread around like there was no end.
“What are the good hotels around?” Sammy asked the cabbie. ”Do you want to stay in the town or in the tea gardens Saar?” asked the cabbie. Everyone at once shouted Tea garden. The cabbie a bit shocked by the way we shouted suggested 3 places and said he would take us to all the places and let us choose the place we wanted.
The first place was ok, with the hotel facing a river and a huge valley. It was a big hotel and was not that private. Everyone voted no. The cabbie drove down to the second place called Tea Valley Resort ( http://www.teavalleyresort.com/ ) and few kilometres down the road and up the valley. It was a small resort way down a tea estate. You hardly saw anyone till kms. The view was amazing with valleys, narrow paths amidst tree estates. “I love this place, It’s so heavenly” said Sush. Everyone had to agree.
“Sammy and me will go and find out about the accommodation” said Sush stepping out of the car. The estate was of 3 star standard. We enquired about the rooms. They had 2 luxury Cottage’s available. It was a small resort with a few cottages and most of them were booked by the honeymooner’s. The guy mentioned 7k per cottage and said as it was off-season and we wanted 2 he would give us for 5k each.
“Can we see the room please’ asked Sush calling others. ’Wow!! This suite is great. The view is great from the balcony .The room was actually above the clouds “said Sammy looking down the balcony. The clouds were drifting down. It was misty and the weather was romantic 🙂 .
“Let’s checkin “said Sammy and everyone nodded as it was one of the beautiful places, all of us have seen till now.
Thus the stay at Tea Valley began.