Tag Archive | Ernakulam

Divine Intervention……. or not !?

As I mentioned in my previous Umbrella article, the Monsoon brings much needed respite from the scorching heat to farmers, animals, humans etc.

When I heard the hour-long rumbling of thunder the other night, I did not think that there would be any damage to houses or trees in our city – the ‘thunder’ sounded more like the noise which normally comes with weather lightening in the tropics, but…… I obviously was wrong.

And just so that you know, I dislike shopping; I really do and always did. Normally I more or less know what I want when I ‘breeze’ into the shop and if the Assistant tells me the item I am looking for is not available I am normally out immediately. No hanging around, being followed at every step I take by the said Assistant trying to sell me something I really do not want or need, for that matter.

Shopping for food items is a slightly different matter – after all this is a necessity to one’s daily life.

I think we all have our favourite Supermarket/Shop and I am no different in that respect. Although there are Supermarkets and Shops not too far from my area, I still like to do my fortnightly food shopping in Ernakulam itself, at the “Supermercato Ashis”, which is managed and run by a very nice group of people for many many years.

But even here, where I am really well looked after regarding ‘customer service’ and where certain members of staff know my shopping list more or less in advance (!) I do not like to linger around for too long.

It is a very busy place, right on one of the most important roads in our city; finding a car parking space is like trying to win the lottery and for walking on the pavement…….

There are not too many fully grown trees gracing our city streets any more due to partially much needed developments, like the METRO.
But this tree, like all the others, gave slight shade to pedestrians, birds etc. and now, I found this …..

When I talked to Security –on- Duty I was told, that the storm a few days previously had brought this tree crashing down, but….no one got hurt, nor a car damaged. Sheer luck!

I will miss that tree!



Christmas in Fort Cochin in Kerala

After I posted my previous video here I had a sort of minor brain wave; why not take you on a little journey around some of the many many places in the world we have either lived in or visited (in some cases many times over). And knowing how busy you are all during those last hectic days before Christmas I thought that just a little musical introduction to these places is just enough – for now!

So – why not sit back, with a cup of coffee or tea (and a biscuit or two) and enjoy my “Christmas music from near and far”.


The journey starts here right on our own doorsteps – with the Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica (one of the only eight Basilicas in the whole of India) in Fort Kochi, who’s history goes back to the sixteenth century, beginning with the arrival of Portuguese missionaries in 1500 CE. (pic. Above and below)


The following musical video features CSI Immanuel Church Choir, Cochin/Kerala, India singing “Whispering Hope”.

I wish you all a happy and peaceful Third of Advent.


Nachdem ich mein vorhergehendes Video hier zeigte, hatte ich einen kleinen Geistesblitz ; warum nehme ich Euch nicht einfach mit auf eine kleine Reise zu den vielen vielen Plaetze in der Welt wo wir entweder gelebt haben oder die wir besuchten (in einigen Faellen mehrmals). Und da ich weiss wie beschaeftigt Ihr alle seid waehrend dieser letzten hektischen Tage vor Weihnachten, dachte ich dass nur eine kleine musikalische Einfuehrung zu diesen Plaetzen gerade genug ist – fuer jetzt!

So, warum macht es Ihr Euch nicht bequem mit einer Tasse Kaffee oder Tee (und ein oder zwei Plaetzchen) und geniesst meine “Weihnachtsmusik von Nah’ und Fern”.
Die Reise beginnt hier “vor unserer eigenen Haustuere” – mit der Santa Cruz Kathedrale Basilika (eine von den nur acht Basiliken in ganz Indien) in Fort Kochi, deren Geschichte zurueck geht bis auf das Sechzehnte Jahrhundert, angefangen mit der Ankunft der Portugisischen Missionare in 1500 CE.
Einen schoenen, geruhsamen Dritten Advent wuensche ich Euch allen.


Rain, rain go away…….. (but do come back another day)

As most of you will agree with me the topic of “weather” (like in Sunshine or Rain) is without any doubt still the most common topic whenever people meet or talk on the telephone. Who has not talked to somebody at one time long-distance and inevitably the question comes “how is the weather over there with you?”

Here in Kerala we are now smack in the middle of the Monsoon Season. Having complaint about the heat for a few months we now have a new topic – Rain! (as in … too much) surely bringing much needed relief to the people, animals, agriculture etc. But, like everything else, too much of one good thing turns easily and quickly into something negative.

The heavy monsoon rain has been pelting down for a few weeks now turning our beautiful Kerala into an even greener oasis. But a more or less uninterrupted extremely heavy downpour over the week-end also brought even bigger traffic chaos, landslides, etc.

On Monday morning we had to drive to the Airport for something which could not be put off and it simply became a sort of “mini journey to hell”. We passed many flooded houses, churches, temples etc. on our way. Many of the low-lying fields were completely flooded; the cattle grazing there were standing in flood water nearly up to their stomach.

On route we had to cross the bridge over the mighty river Periyar. The rain was hitting us hard – the windscreen wipers on our car could hardly cope with the deluge and there was absolutely no way that we could stop and get out to photograph the raging river, which had risen considerably and now looking brown, muddy and quite dirty, bringing the water from the mountains down to Ernakulam (Cochin).


So this is the reason my friends, why for once you will not see any photographs from our own “manningtreearchive”. But luckily I was able to get this impressive photograph (which also appeared over 2 pages this morning in the paper) from the picture desk of our newspaper Malayala Manorama Daily. My thanks goes out to them.