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Throwing open all the doors & windows in my life.
Interests: Backpack travel, India, photography, travel, travel photography, environmental issues, Indian novels, New York Times crossword puzzles, my garden. Did I mention travel?
Recent Activity
Not what you're thinking... Continue reading
Posted Jan 10, 2020 at My Year of Living Draftily
In which I coin a new collective noun for sand Continue reading
Posted Dec 9, 2019 at My Year of Living Draftily
Back in 2008, on my year of Indian travels, I made the trek to Madurai in southern Tamil Nadu to visit the massive (6 ha) must-see temple to the goddess Meenakshi. It’s particularly noted for its seven enormous, intricately carved and colourfully painted gopurams (towers). I arrived at night, and specifically chose a hotel situated to give me a good dawn view of the towers. I went to the roof to scope it out before bed; in the dark I couldn’t make out any detail, though I found it strange that such a highlight was not lit up. Their hulking... Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2016 at My Year of Living Draftily
1. Goa “Driving in India is very dangerous,” says my taxi driver as we’re overtaken by a motorbike and car simultaneously. We’ve only just hit the main road after leaving the airport in Goa, the final leg of my 44 hour journey from Canada to India. After this opening statement he tells me he’s a very safe driver because he only drives 70-80kmh, as he follows the bike that just passed us to pass a large truck, via the shoulder to the left of the truck (India drives on the left, a holdover from the British Raj days). That dubious... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2016 at My Year of Living Draftily
I learned my lesson in Bijapur: early means early. I’m out of my room at 6:30am, walking off confidently in the dawn twilight according to the directions I was given, repeated by the first person I come across at the main road. My confidence wavers after about 10 minutes, so I check again. No, I’m heading in exactly the opposite direction I should be going. I should know better to confirm the details that seem obvious to my enthusiastic helpers that aren’t so obvious when I hit the road. I turn around, pass my hotel, and head into town. The... Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2016 at My Year of Living Draftily
I had a few days to kill before heading to Hampi. Goa was a lovely tropical vacation, of course, but it didn’t really feel like ‘traveling’ – I kind of felt like I was slacking in some way. Which is fine for a while, but you eventually need to get to the heart of the matter, and that’s not to be found on a Goan beach. I feel I have different muscles that I use for different kinds of travel. I noticed the shift almost as soon as I hit the train station in early in the morning in Margao,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2015 at My Year of Living Draftily
After writing about how India is an assault, I started this trip in the least assault-y place in the country, Agonda Beach in Goa: an enormous expanse of white sand stretching into the distance with gentle surf, lined with a string of low-rise wood/palm/thatch restaurants and beach huts. It caters to a range of travellers but definitely has more up-market feel. Fish, fresh fruit and WiFi are plentiful, and it all adds up to a pretty idyllic tropical vacation spot. Early morning yoga, my favourite waterside meditation rock, beachside breakfasts, power tanning (under an umbrella, let's not get crazy), fresh... Continue reading
Posted Dec 27, 2015 at My Year of Living Draftily
It’s been a struggle to stay awake the three hours I had to kill in Moscow. I navigated the steps to get my onward boarding pass, one last security screen, got on the airport’s free WiFi to see if Facebook and any last minute emails could keep me awake. Barely. FB friends don’t know how close they came to seeing a post from me that read :”...last layodjwnhortsdjd...” Then the 1am flight got delayed. Kill me now. I lent my phone charger to a nice couple from Tajikistan, but the language barrier was too great to go beyond basic geography.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2015 at My Year of Living Draftily
I'm so not a fan of Goa. I'm one of those travel snobs, particularly in India, that sees Goa as the place where people go when they have no real intention to visit "India", they just want a cheap vacay on the beach. Or a place they can afford to stay/drink/smoke on the beach for months at a time. The slightly more adventurous may make the epic eight hour train trip to Hampi - their taste of 'real' India - for a few days, which is laudable except that a few of them seem to not realize they're in a... Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2012 at My Year of Living Draftily
“Don’t call it ‘party’.” “How about a ‘spiritual ceremony to welcome in the new year’?” We all laugh. A number of us are discussing plans for new year’s eve with the manager of our guesthouse. It’s pretty tame – dinner here, look at the colourful rangolis that will begin to adorn the streets around 8 or 9pm, reconvene for cake later in the evening, maybe be in the restaurant until 12:30 or 1am. Will the police allow the restaurant to be open that late? Sounds likely, but we don’t want to risk their wrath with rash talk of “party”. Hampi... Continue reading
Posted Jan 2, 2012 at My Year of Living Draftily
Someone is sweeping the dirt road and uneven stone slabs outside my window, one floor below. There’s a lawnmower rev of a rickshaw, a buzzer-like horn. A cow bellows a complaint. Pooja bells tinkle, the low drone of repeated mantras emerges from the Brahmin house next door. Children shout, mother calls back. A monkey screeches at another in the tree beside the guesthouse. The day is well underway, I should join it. I pull on some comfy clothes and head to the roof in the half-light for my self-directed yoga session. I’m early enough during this solstice period to greet... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2011 at My Year of Living Draftily
Since the dance party cranked up across the hall at around 6:30am, I decided to watch some early morning news on my only morning in Bangalore. But my clicking stopped dead at the History channel. “After three accidents in one day, [American Ice-Road Trucker X] decides to call it quits after his first day.” “This is insane,” says X. I’ve come in late, but from what I piece together the North American reality TV phenomenon “Ice-Road Truckers” has decided to (literally) take it on the road to pit their drivers against some of the world’s most dangerous roads. This episode... Continue reading
Posted Dec 26, 2011 at My Year of Living Draftily
“197 rupees!? Are you crazy?!” As I feel my anger rise quickly to a boil, I know I’m back in India. The taxi driver looks worried at my protest, points lamely at the meter. The meter. Four drivers had converged on me not far from the movie theatre I’d just left in South Mumbai, and I’d chosen the one with a new digital meter. Rigged taxi and rickshaw meters have blown up into a huge issue here in Mumbai and there’s a battle raging between the drivers and the transport authorities, one I’ve read about daily in the papers since... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2011 at My Year of Living Draftily
Lisa has shared their blog My Year of Living Draftily
Dec 22, 2011
The new bedding is gorgeous, and I've always loved your bed. I've always thought it looks like it's about to fly away, and agree that it seems a bit cooped up in a...sauna...strangely. The grey/blue option might be a nice way to open up that space, but if you're not 100% sure why not start with part of it, like just the ceiling, see if that's enough. The thing with painting wood is once it's done, it's done. Tough to go back. I've always been happy the previous owners of my place painted all the wood trim because I like the way it lightens everything, but I don't think I'd have had the nerve to do it myself.
Toggle Commented Jun 17, 2010 on All About Me – New Dwell Bedding at mirrormirror
1 reply
"Self Esteem for Dummies"
Toggle Commented Mar 24, 2010 on TypePad for Dummies at Everything Typepad
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Lisa is now following The Typepad Team
Mar 15, 2010
Ooh, there's a bakery here in Victoria that does absolutely to-die-for lavender shortbread! I don't have the recipe, not sure they'd part with it but there's got to be a good one on-line somewhere. Lavender and shortbread totally works, believe me.
Toggle Commented Aug 6, 2009 on Harvest at mirrormirror
1 reply