Sri Lanka // Unawatuna Guest House Heaven

  Has your baby ever slept in suitcase? Have you and your husband ever shared a twin bed? Ever had to roll up towels to create bed rails to keep the kids from thumping to the floor every half hour as they fall out of bed? Sound familiar? Yes, that’s because that’s what family travel looks like at one point or another. Be honest. It does. And while the place you crash is only a nominal part of the adventure, I am a really big proponent of spending a little... Read The Rest →

Kerala Travel Guide Part Three // Purity

  Day three of our weekend escape to Kerala finished right here as our private houseboat slipped slowly back into the dock at the Purity resort and spa. With an entire day ahead of us to relax before our evening flight from Kochi back to Chennai, we were greeted by a staff member clad in delicately pleated, rose-colored sari. We followed her swishing along stepping stones set into lush grass to our  deluxe cabana for the day. Surrounded on three sides by a veranda overlooking the gardens of the resort... Read The Rest →

Kerala Travel Guide Part Two // The Backwaters

Imagine a highway of rivers, where rush hour brings two or three houseboats silent slipping by one another, wide lanes, casual waves, and families relaxing about long leisurely lunches. Rest stops require tying up and include shopping for necessities-freshly caught fish for your dinner and sips of coconut water-freshly plucked from trees lining the highway and the rice paddy beyond. Life on the banks feels virtually untouched by modern India; women wash clothes, men fish and children skip about the jetty at play and catch water taxi’s to and from... Read The Rest →

Kerala Travel Guide Part One // Fort Kochi + Biennale

Kochi, a small port town on the Arabian sea, was once (like most enticing towns of India) the hot potato of European rule. Passed from the hands of the Portuguese, Dutch and the British the town formerly known as Cochin, is now firmly nestled into the hands of Mother India and is still hot hot hot. As the mercury rises, so does the tourist count as the city arranges it’s galleries, hotels, restaurants and public spaces with contemporary art installations from around the world. The city itself is a work... Read The Rest →

Red Pearls of Goa // With Magnum Workshops

Stuffed, smoked and laid out in the sun to dry seems a popular Goan theme. The sausages of this tale, however, are more firmly rooted in the colonial Portuguese lore than in the modern-day, summer holiday-fest that Goa has become. Stuffed in the tradition of their Portuguese ancestors and relegated to sales in only certain areas of the city, the reign of the swine still lives in the farthest corners of restaurant menus and street-side vendors alike.   I recently had the honor of attending Magnum Workshops in Goa, India, with mentors, Stuart... Read The Rest →

Mehndi Easter Eggs

  Mehndi or henna is a popular dye used in India, Pakistan and surrounding countries. The most beautiful and intricate designs are applied to the hands and feet of both men and women and while it is most commonly for weddings and Hindu ceremonies it is also perfectly acceptable for the everyday. Mehndi is made from grinding the leaves of the henna plant and is applied to the skin and left to set for 20 minutes or more until the paste dries, cracks and eventually falls off leaving a brown or... Read The Rest →

Mango // A Season

  Some of my favorite places on earth experience all four seasons. It is one of the things I miss most about my home in the Pacific Northwest, but the life we lead often takes us to exotic places around the planet that know only a season or two. Instead of mourning the loss of my sweet winter, spring, summer and fall, I began to instead embrace the different types of seasons in their place. In Brazil we had only a dry season and a wet season. The dry season... Read The Rest →

Mumbai // Travel Guide

Like splitting cells create a mass of flesh, the city once called Bombay is now as complicated and rich as the blood that runs through its veins. With DNA from both the British and the Portuguese, the most populous and most wealthy city in India offers up some of the simplest and most extravagant pleasures, a popular juxtaposition in India which never allows one to forsake the other. From ice cold cocktails in gold gilded hotels, along twinkling, carriage-lined promenades to the most sizzling street food scene, you can’t truly experience... Read The Rest →

Madras Fish Curry // Mrs. Rita

If you are anything like me, you are a little intimidated by cooking Indian cuisine. It seems complicated, but really is as simple as the ingredients themselves. Each serving an aurveydic purpose, there isn’t an ingredient that is added that is added without reason. Still I was nervous to pick up the spice dhabba and get started. Enter: Mrs. Rita All one really must do is express an interest in anything in South India and there will immediately be one (or more!) people willing to share their knowledge. It is... Read The Rest →

Pondicherry, India // Weekend Guide

Think of Pondicherry as the little pearl and South India as the swirling hologram of a shell that houses it. Toted as “The French Riviera of the East” by some, this former French colony sits quietly along the Bay of Bengal. Made up of small enclaves, the former “White Town” is a slice of French architecture, design and chic sensibility next to it’s Tamil brother Chennai, known always for the color, spice and beautiful chaos.  The charm lies deeply in the interconnection of the two. From the city of Chennai,... Read The Rest →

Want to travel to India?

  You’re in luck! The fabulous Drea of the stylish and popular blog www.ohdeardrea.blogspot.com is hosting a trip here, well not here to Chennai exactly, but to North India. Drea (with the travel expertise of Above The Clouds) is planning a trip in the spring that is full of everything I love about India, including: exploration of it’s arts, culture, food and religion. For more information on the trip go here, check out some photographs of mine she is sharing, and link up for what is sure to be an amazing... Read The Rest →

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