Friday, July 3, 2009


Security checkpoint in Ella.
The man himself. Lonely Planet, the travel guide, sings his praises.

Buddhist shrine in Ella.

Ha, the guesthouse, Beauty Mount Tourist Inn, that I almost set on fire!

Guesthouse restaurant.

One of the joys of backpacking as opposed to being shepherded around in packaged tours is the countless opportunities to mingle with the locals and get to know their culture and lives.

Lonely Planet, the travel guide, heaps praises on him. He waylaid me the moment I got off the bus in Ella.

"Are you looking for a room? I have guesthouse. Very cheap. Only 500 rupees," he said.
"Where"? I said.
"Up there. Very nice. Very quiet," he beamed.
I looked up to where he pointed. Perched on a small hill was his guesthouse, Beauty Mount Tourist Inn. Rather grandiose name I thought.

From the guesthouse I got a panaromic view of the lush forest that envelops the village and the distant mountains. But it entailed a strenuous walk up a steep flight of slippery steps.
The owner is in his 70s, and he proudly reveals that he meditates an hour a day.
"I can only do it for 5 minutes before my mind starts wandering," I said sheepishly.

"Must be quiet place. No noise," he said.


  1. The bottled drinks in neat, coloured wooden cases remind me kampong days in Singapore in the 60s. And the indian gentleman reminds me of the shopkeeper at the corner sundry shop who sits all day to sell sweets, cigarettes, newspapers magazines, etc.
    James Ang
    Geylang Road

  2. I also like John Steinbeck a lot! The first novel I read from his was Of Mice an Men. This year I read Grapes of Wrath: terrific! Last year a read Cup of Gold: is very different from the others, but still is a great book. Thanks for the comment in my blog. Your blog is awesome, dude! I fear you didn't understood anything I wrote because every single post is in portuguese. Sorry, man (there just a few readers and they are all brazilians).Indeed, you're welcome to visit it whenever you want.


    Guilherme (William is the translated name).

  3. Did you received the last comment I did here? If so, please ignore this message. If don't, please tell me.

  4. Thank you Guilherme. Yes I received your earlier comment. Have a nice day.

  5. I'm from Brazil. Let me ask you something: How did you discover my blog? Just for curiosity. I was thinking and I don't have any idea of how did ya discover it.


    William (I'll use this "fakename" cause is better for you to pronunce it, ok?).

  6. I saw only now your comment about The Time Machine by HG Wells. I think is amazing how two mens of two VERY DIFFERENT cultures and languages like almost the same kind of authors and books. The english language make the things very easy, I guess. I'm writing my first novel and it is in the "Scifi" Genre. Thats why almost all of the blog posts that recommend books("gavetas abertas -> click on recomendando livros") are from "scifi" authors: I'm basically just reading that in the moment. I have 4 more novels by HG Wells here. I'll start Foundation by Isaac Asimov this week and I'm waiting one book from Jules Verne, here. Hehe! Once in a while I'm reading Steinbeck or Shakespeare just for don't get tired of the scifi stile. Do you ever read Bernard Cornwell? It's awesome.



  7. Thank you William for your comments. I came across your blog by pure chance on the Net and, being a book lover, my eyes lit up on seeing the library of books you use as the theme on your blog.

    I used to enjoy scifi. Clarke's scifi novels, in particular 2001: A Space Odyssey, are also among my favourites.

    Raybury's Fahrenheit 451 was an early favourite.

    Will check out Cornwell.

    All the best with your novel.

  8. Wow and all in the name of blogs and books. Hope you both have a great chit chat.

  9. Roger, in answer to your question about the origins of the name barbershop sining...see Barbershop has a unique sound and I find it really enjoyable to sing. Out of curiosity, how in the world did you stumble upon my barbershop blog? Bob

  10. Ours is a community of blog lovers and hope we can all support each other for the passion we hold.
    Let's all keep in touch.

  11. You've hit the nail on the head, Andy.