A big biryani breakfast, watching guys poking poles at trees, and there may be curry trouble ahead.

Day 97: Kochi, India. Our ‘re-calibration day’ got off to a good start, amply fueled by a big breakfast of chicken and egg biryani at a local eatery, washed down with lots of coffee.

We stopped for another coffee hit at a tiny cafe which doubles as a general store, then walked back down local lane ways to our hotel. There were huge thunderous rains again last night, and the lanes were impassable in parts. We had to take a number of shortcuts through gates and building sites and over walls – a bit of an obstacle course but better than soggy shoes.

A number of men were waving metal poles around to free fallen branches from the power lines outside our hotel. When we got back to our room and switched on phones and laptop, we realised the fallen branches had knocked out all internet access.

Lil went down to chat to the hotel manager, who went outside to chat to the men with metal poles, who said they had no idea how long it would take for internet service to be restored. So we spent the morning hot spotting to the manager’s iphone, which was faster than the hotel internet, so we were quite happy.

We spent the morning and most of the afternoon researching New Delhi, booking accommodation, checking out public transport in the city, and starting to plot and plan where we might go beyond that. Agra is a must, as is Jaipur, and we’re pondering spending a good chunk of time focusing on the state of Rajasthan, which is huge, covering over 10% of the total area of India.

Around 5pm we’d had enough of staring at screens, and headed out for a beer at the same bar we visited last night. There are strict regulations around serving beer in the state of Kochi, and bars are few and far between. The ‘Red Ba..Restaurant’, which is a seriously wonky name, is the only bar in the local area. It looked even less inviting in daylight and was already busy and noisy with guys stopping by for a beer or a pint of rum after work. We stayed for one beer, then headed out for dinner.

We walked to the same eatery where we had our biryani breakfast this morning. This time we had chicken masala, chicken 65 and piles of rice and naan breads. We’re loving the food here already, however Lil’s not sure she’ll be able to eat curry two to three times a day – as she says, ‘there may be curry trouble ahead’.

Then we walked home for an early night, dodging the cars and bikes that were flying at breakneck speed along the dark road – driving here seems to involve hitting the accelerator hard and not braking until you reach your final destination.

Tomorrow we’re up early, to pack up and head to the airport, to catch a flight to New Delhi. And who knows, maybe we’ll pack in another curry for breakfast.

More then.

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