I'm here! (posted by Ann)
Well, I arrived last night. The long flights weren't as bad as I thought it would be, I actually slept about 2 hours the first flight and 4 hours the second one so it made the time go by more quickly.
The hotel we're at is just gorgeous. Here's a picture of the building I'm staying in, which is one of the buildings on the 22 acres that make up the hotel campus. It's very British Colonial style - wicker, rattan, dark wood, light fabrics - and wonderful service. The grounds are beautifully landscaped, but what makes it seem exotic is the sounds. I can't take a picture of those, but I was woken up this morning to bird songs I've never heard before. I wish I could figure out what was making which noise, but they are really loud and really different! They have tons of little squirrel/chipmunk thingies on the trees. They are smaller than a squirrel, they have stripes like a chipmunk, the tail is a cross between the two (fluffy like a squirrel, but they hold it straight up like a chipmunk when they run) and they climb like a squirrel.
The tree to the right in the picture above is a ficus, and the thing has figs growing on it. Look at this - they come right out of the trunk. Haven't seen that before.
I went shopping today,and realized that traffic is really bad. There are lots of things on the road you never see at home like packs of wild dogs, oxen pulling carts, horses, elephants - it's all mixed with buses and Mercedes. Wild. I particularly like the cabs and motorcycles. Here is a typical shot - the cabs are the yellow things, they are three wheelers on motorcycle engines, with a seat for two behind the driver. There are always lots of motorcycles - love the guy with a scooter on his lap on the back of the motorcycle!
And this is my personal favorite. I call it sari-side-saddle. You see this a lot, a whole family on a motorcycle. Usually with more children hanging off, but you get the idea.
More later - we're going back out shopping this afternoon. So much to see . . .