Monday night was awesome. Finally we had some rain, and along with that, a spectacular electrical storm. So we went up to the rooftop, which is a great place to be a spectator at such a time. Walking on the roof to the sheltered bit was a little freaky, as we were ankle-deep in water on slippery marble and lightening was all around. You can’t really rush when walking on wet marble, as it’s bound to lead to a trip to the hospital and an intimate relationship with a plaster cast or two. However, once seated and with a gin each and Pink Floyd playing on my little iPod stereo, it was a fantastic show. We watched airplanes in the distance landing and taking off and wondered how that felt for the passengers in them. I hope I don’t get to experience it!
The whole scene was just brilliant and if it wasn’t for the waiters passionately yelling at each other , TV blaring at top volume on the next level down, dogs fighting on the street below and the honkings of millions of horns, it probably would have been quite romantic.
At least it cooled the air off for a while. Once it stops raining though, you quickly feel the temperature rising again within moments you’re living in a sauna. Paul calls this ‘raining up’.
India is a place of noise. Even back in your own room you still have to listen to the fan spinning around and the next door room’s air conditioning going. There is no such thing as quiet here. It’s funny how you get used to it though and filter most of it out. And it really is an odd thing to put a staunch padlock on your door every time you leave your bedroom, and to watch out for little lizards running between your toes. I’d hate to stand on one of them – a little squishy for me, and without a doubt a real discomfort for the lizard.
The guesthouses have a lot of character in this neighbourhood and ours is no exception. On the rooftop, at the ‘restaurant’, they have made an attempt to get it looking nice. They have cane chairs, a woven bamboo roof, pot plants, etc. This is then offset by black plastic water tanks, lime green tarpaulins around the edges, air coolers that have to be one of the ugliest things ever invented and cats that squat inches away from you watching your dinner with mercenary eyes. An eclectic mix.
And the waiters are characters also. Yesterday we used the room service for lunch. When I asked the waiter, Akash, how much we owed him he said “Too much.” “Oh dear”, said Paul, “we only have one much.” Akash cracked up and laughed all the way back upstairs.