Last month, I visited the sleepy little historical town of Hampi. Three days of temple hopping in the sun, sitting atop boulders watching the sunset, riding along windy roads with nothing but rice fields on either side, and tucking into bed at 10 pm. In three days, I came back three shades darker but feeling much lighter. This was that “much needed break” people go in search of every once in a while.
However, I don’t have a story for you. But that doesn’t mean I have nothing amusing to recount.
Here are 12 “amusing” things that made my trip all the more memorable:
1. The autorickshaw driver who offered to take us to Hampi had an “American accent” that worked like a stick of chewing gum. It started off strong but the longer I bargained about the price, the weaker it got. We ended up paying more than we should have. Then again, his accent efforts did deserve that extra 100 bucks.
2. A semi-deluxe suite at the Hotel Mayura is more semi than deluxe, if you know what I mean. When I made reservations online, I booked a deluxe suite by mistake and so downgraded to a semi-deluxe (I’m all about budget travelling). Once we reached the hotel and spent two hours in the semi-deluxe room, we upgraded to a deluxe suite. (what’s a budget?)
3. Finding the perfect souvenir for a place called Hampi.
4. On day two, we took the ferry to Anegundi. On this side of the river, it is still legal to rent bikes. Our walk to the rental place (Uramma) was on a road that was not wide enough for buffaloes and me to walk past each other with sufficient distance between us. I don’t like bovine animals. I’m actually terrified of them. So I stepped out of the way and into the bushes to wait until the path was clear. If only I knew I was stepping into a little something another buffalo had left behind.
5. In Anegundi, we visited Hampi Island. Or Hippie Island, as the locals call it because this is where the tourists get high and the cops are too busy to look up.
6. Hampi Island is also where non-vegetarian food (chicken and fish mostly, I don’t think any of those cows end up on a grill) is served more liberally. A lot of restaurants in Hampi Island serve Italian and Mediterranean cuisine. It is not authentic at all but it is not bad at all.
7. It is also where civilization is awake past 10 pm. Meaning till 11 pm. Which is what the guy at Uramma told us. Not that I can support his claims – this little grandma went to bed at 10 pm. Every night.
8. In Anegundi, we climbed about 575 steps to visit the Hanuman temple. Once we reached the top, we sat down, caught our breath and soaked in the view. As for the temple, we decided not to go in because taking off our sandals would have been too much effort.
9. At the bottom of the stairs sits a man with a weighing machine. This way people who climb up and pray for weight loss can confirm their prayers have been answered.
10. On day three, we visited the Underground Shiva temple. It was too dark to see the shivling, so we switched on our iPhone torches. I came very close to becoming Batwoman. I also know what bat poop smells like now.
11. After that, we found a snake that was in the middle of lunch. So we spent less time looking around the temple and more time ogling, taking pictures and recording it swallow a squirrel.
12. Before we boarded the bus to Bangalore, we visited the gardens from where could catch a view of the Tungabhadra dam and river. It was beautiful and we took many pictures. Then we took this picture that speaks some very wrongly put together words.
Featured image: View from atop the Malyavanta hill