Saturday, December 3, 2011

Kerala travelogue - Day 6 (26th Nov 2011) - Aymenem - to 'The God of Small Things'

Kerala Toursim
Alleppey | Aymenem | Ernakulam | Fort KochiKalariyapattu | Kumarakom | Paranthampura | Thekkady | Vembanad |
Holiday Destinations in India

Always was curious why Arundhati Roy, a bong, chose Aymenem, Kerala for her renowned book and my all time favourite - THE GOD OF SMALL THINGS.
Now that I had a chance, didn't want to miss the land of Mammachi, Ammu, Estha, Rahel, Chacko and others. So, was off to Aymenem after bidding farewell to Vivian and Noel who were to spend 5 days at Murarikulam beach near Alleppey. Mr. Babu, being the perfect host, arranged the rickshaw for us.

Our neighbours at Coconut Creek
Our hosts in the centre
Aymenem is a remote village and I had booked my stay for 2 days at 'Backwater Heritage Home' - another homestay. Enjoying every bit of the trip till now, I was in for a surprise.
The homestay in itself is good, amidst mahogany and coconut trees, facing the canal and having a private garden, but the hospitality is pathetic (Can I give negative marks) - more on that later.

Backwater Heritage Homestay
I saw a snake boat, used in the races, easily able to accommodate a 100 people and didn't need a lot of visualisation to think how exciting and wonderful it would be to watch one of these races on the waters. We asked Mr.Xavier for boating options and he fixed a canoe for us after saying that it would be INR 300 for 3 hrs. I needed it only for 1 hr. and told him so.

Snake Boat

What a pose - mind it!!
Canoeing in the backwater canals was really soothing. This was a true peaceful backwater experience as the canal flows through the village. Really enjoyed it and a canoe is the best way to ply the waters. Kids waved as we went past them and we waved back. Of the rafting, covered boat, houseboat (to come later) and canoeing, I liked this the best. The scenery was truly out of Gods' well written book !!

The storyteller of the backwaters

Mid-day traffic

Going home

The storyteller of the backwaters


The storyteller of the backwaters

The storyteller of the backwaters

The storyteller of the backwaters

The storyteller of the backwaters
Now for the great hospitality of Backwater Heritage. They just left the dinner on the table and didn't even inform us. When we finally sat to eat, apart from the food being pathetic, it was cold as the damp weather outside. Nobody even came to ask if we needed anything else, forget about preferences. I was so irritated that I didn't eat and went out to get biscuits. The same thing repeated in the morning during breakfast. Cold tea and putta - they didn't even bother to ask what we wanted - and nobody was there to ask if we needed anything else. And would you believe it, the host had the nerve to charge INR 150 per head for the dinner he had served - 1 veg curry and 3 chapatis per person. For the 1 hr. of boating he charged INR 300. Initially, when I asked him if I should pay the boatman, he said he would pay him - so this was the ploy of settling, overcharging to be precise. Cancelled my stay for the other day, and left as soon as possible this ghost house. An advice to Backwater Heritage - Visit Coconut Creek in Kumarakom and learn a thing or two from their hospitality.

Annotations:

  • Stay at 'Backwater Heritage' only if you want to spoil your holiday

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