I enjoy being on the road; a probable inheritance from my tribe who never stopped moving from place to place. When we were children, every week we would visit Muvattupuzha, where my mother’s home was. The 50 km from Kochi to Muvattupuzha meant a sea change. While the former was an ancient seaport town, the latter was a village with rivers, paddy fields and large groves of trees. As we left the town and got near to the village, the magnificentchanges occurred to the landscape was deeply joyous to watch. At times we went by car, which meant extra stops on the way. Almost everyone in the village was related to us and everywhere children would gather up for playtime.
A family trip to Coimbatore, when I was 11 or 12 years old, is particularly unforgettable. This was with my aunt and her children to attend a wedding. As my forefathers were from the current Tamil Nadu, we had family members settled in different parts of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. I may have visited the place earlier, but that long train journey was etched forever in my mind. “Look, a horse”, I yelled, seeing a donkey for the first time. I was fascinated by the unfamiliar landscape, flora and fauna, weather and the array of different smells. An unimaginably new and different world was magically unfolding before my little eyes for the first time. Coimbatore was several times bigger and crowded than Kochi. Although it was too much for a child to process, it made me more and more curious and inquisitive.