09-May-2004 -- I had a spare day after a conference in Cochin and decided to see some of the country while in search of the nearest land confluence before flying out at midnight. I tried to get a driver who spoke english to make the whole thing easier, but no luck there. Saji was a great driver, but his virtually nonexistant english made it difficult to communicate.
We left at 13:30 with 79km to the point. Unfortunately I didn't have a map that extended as far as the confluence so we just set off for a town that was in the general direction.
At 14:50 Saji was looking a little tired and wanted to stop for a cup of tea, so we did and met some new friends. 44.9km left to go. Looks like it will be a rush to get there and back for my flight at midnight.
With 27km to go we reached some hills that were spectacular with thick tropical jungle and many waterfalls. Beautiful, but I was worried that this would mess up my navigation with the roads winding through the hills. Until now we had been pretty much straight on track heading for Munnar. I don't like my chances of getting too close to the point in this sort of terrain.
We continue driving until we come within 2km of the point, which is now off to our right.
Finding a road that goes down in that direction we stop to ask some locals where it goes. They tell us that there is nothing here, but some foreigners were in this area a couple of weeks ago. Interesting.
We travelled down the road and turned off again up a driveway to the house of Sivraman. 1km from the point. He's a very nice man with a lovely family. Unfortunately he doesn't speak english so I have trouble explaining what I'm doing, beyond "research".
By this stage it's getting quite late and I'm not going to have time for a 2km treck through the jungle to find the exact point and back again. Dissapointing, but hey!, I've made some new friends and seen some scenery that I would never have seen otherwise.
I take some photos of Sivraman and his family before they offer us a cup of tea and it's time to be heading back to Cochin for my flight home.
It's a great part of the world. If you're thinking of visiting this confluence, I'm told that Munnar is a good place to stay. Pass on my regards to Sivraman, and if you speak the language maybe you could explain exactly what it was I was doing.