Laid-back Kerala indeed! Well, that’s how holidays should be. It’s just that hard-working guests often bring their age-old patterns of living with them on holiday. Rushing here, arriving early, clock-watching. You know it. You’ve done it.
What a pity!
You don’t actually see a Keralan (Malayalee) in panic. You don’t see one rush. You don’t see one run.
Is there something worth copying here? There certainly is when it comes to holidaying.
It has been difficult to explain to local staff that if a guest books, say, an Ayurvedic massage for 2pm, then the therapist should be at her station by 1.45. Why? Well, it’s not just to prepare. It’s because invariably the western guest will NOT arrive on time. He/she will arrive early. A concept that nobody in laid-back Kerala can fathom.
Here’s a story from a fellow Hotel owner in Kerala that illustrates a related point. A group of British tourists came to stay. At dinner it was decided that they would all go to the beach the next morning at ten o’clock. The owner got wind of it. Now the beach was literally across the road from the hotel. No transportation required. And so like clockwork on the dot of ten the next morning the entire group traipsed out of the hotel. Nobody was ‘late’. Which prompted the very jolly Keralan owner to shout after them, ‘Have you come on holiday to practise punctuality?!’
They took it as the great sports that they were.
But it’s worth another thought. You pay all that money to relax – mind, body and soul. Then you superimpose clock-watching on top of the goal.
To kick-start the new truly-relaxed you, do a course in Ayurveda at your hotel. And book Shirodhara in particular (3 consecutive treatments give the best result). That specific treatment is for the mind that continually races, shooting backwards to ‘If only I had done…’, shooting forwards to ‘I must remember to do that’. And in the process the mellifluous birdsong and the scent of roses of the moment are but a puff of smoke that nobody notices.
Come to laid-back Kerala for the best laid-back holiday in India.