Free hit counter


By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. These ensure the smooth running of our services. Learn more.


When Jane meets Tarzan...

My friend knows by now, you must be an adventurer to travel with a samurai! After encounters with Naxalite terrorists in Bastar (Chattisgarh), with rhinoceros and dancing monks in Assam, this time I offered a dive in the heart of the jungle of Karnataka...

A good girl, she trusts me and hardly checks on the destination. A good girl, she doesn’t make any comment when we arrive in our guesthouse at one in the morning after a flight of an hour and half and a five-hour drive on a bumpy mud path. Not such a good girl, she wakes me up in the middle of the night screaming: “I'm terrified! I want to leave!” And I discover her, sitting on the bed, trying to beat the pitch darkness and see with the light of her mobile phone what beast has invited itself. Cautious me, before turning the light on, asks her if she thinks it’s a rat. Cautious her – she knows that if she answers yes I would be out of the room in no time and she would have to fight the monster alone –responds that she doesn’t think it’s a rat. So I turn on the light. Samurai til the end of the night... And bravely, I get rid of the intruder: a pillow. Yes yes! The pillow was weighing on her feet and following her movements, slyly imitating a snake. Or a rat. 

After this agitated nGlomeris_marginata,_Pill_Millipede,_Wales.JPGight, what a reward when we open the door in the morning: hibiscus, bananas, plant this, plant that! And butterflies. And dragonflies. And spiders. And insects coming straight out of Alice in Wonderland. As we are fully into observing nature, we stop dead when we come across a handsome male... Huh ? Hellooo? Whatthehellareyoudoinghere Gael*? Breathtaking! So this is here, in the asshole of Karnataka, that super hot guys hide away... Who would have thought?? 


We go straight to the point with this French chilo-italo-belgio-spanish specimen: in the jungle, no place for pretences. We girls are dressed like truck-drivers, with tans that goes with it (due to a nasty sunburn during the first walk), and hairy, the truck-drivers! (Our hairs appear to have got inspired by the lushness of the vegetation and who says jungle says no electricity says no removal and with the humidity you start looking more like Cheetah than Jane in no time!). And our Apollo spends his days gardening, shirtless, with leeches stuck between his toes, cobwebs in the beard, paint under his fingernails and a swimsuit that makes him scratch his butt constantly. And if it was only that… After a month and a half of manual chores (and loneliness) in the jungle, he is so happy to find compatriots (and girls, young and single) that he can’t stop talking.  


So he goes on telling us about the frequency of his showers (twice a week), his sexual frustration (or how he discovered how to download porn pictures on his ipod for his lonely nights), his difficulties linked to the absence of toilet paper, his Don Juan behaviour who fucks everything that moves, his failed studies and his Indian-style ‘school of life’, his macrophage attitude with girls (he painted himself as a ‘fungus’ that phagocytes his girlfriends and thrives thanks to them), his desire to run around naked in our room. Yes Yes, we also fell speechless... Especially after he clarified that he liked hairy women (a subliminal message (given what I explained above)??). And that he’d love to spend the night between us two! Ah the energy of 25 year olds!  


 had chosen the place for its seclusion: no phone network, no internet, no TV, no computer, no nothing. But fate had decided otherwise and forced me to listen to the stories of George of the Jungle, who seems to have missed out on the concept of “be beautiful and shut up”. Eight hours of non-stop blabla. I have to say he lost my attention after his tirade on zoophilia... And the worst, yes the worst, is that after this unloading of atrocities you look at him and think “how hot is this guy”! Ah women, go figure... 


During our scrabble games, my friend and I observe Georgee gardening fervently. And between games, we watch him catch cockroaches to feed his scorpion and frogs, frolic in the river, carry bamboos, respond to the smiles of the blushing Indian girls... Ah Georgee... Who also refused to answer to this sweet nickname of a “failed Tarzan”! 


There is nothing like speeches on organic farming to calm raging hormones... I had indeed chosen the guesthouse of an organic plantation run by a couple of botanical researchers (a Canadian of Indian origin guy and his Indian wife) who fled their Delhi lab to see how agriculture works in real life... We learn that extensive monocultures and pesticides destroy the soil, the ecosystem and our organisms. And the proliferation of coffee plantations in the region threatens the natural habitat of elephants, pushing them to attack the fields and villagers. We also perfect our herpetological and subarachnoid culture. Which did not prevent the eyes of my friend's to spring out of their orbits whenever they locate a huge hairy spider while she is quietly reading in bed! Or call Georgee to the rescue when a giant grasshopper decides to play trampoline on the bed! Because in addition to being beautiful, he is strolling around everywhere with his ‘girl-trap’, a small net with which he is catching frogs... 


Our hot horny male is forced to get out of his way to satisfy his sexual needs! So he invites us for a spicy rum drink by a bonfire lit up by himself, with love. It turns out that he has fallen head over toes for yours truly and... went back to his room empty-handed. Like I said, women, go figure... ;) Well, not completely empty-handed though, as I give him the end of our toilet paper roll to soak-up the souvenirs of his solitary nights! 


We heartily thank him for spicing up our jungle 3 day-stay that would have otherwise consisted only of morning treks, tasty and healthy (maybe even a little too healthy!) food, naps, games and discovery of organic farming! 


*He looks big time like Gael García Bernal.  


Coorg, Karnataka - Nov 2013


I strongly recommend Mojo Plantation, Madikeri district, Coorg, Karnataka. 

Mojo 1.jpg


A trip in Sundarban

 But let me tell you a little more about my trip in the heart of the Bengali furnace... 


Sundarbans, West Bengal - May 2013


Apart from the overwhelming heat and the near-absence of wild animals (we just saw some deers, lizards, monkeys, snakes and birds), we could appreciate the Indian countryside, one of my old dreams!


The advantage of coming in May in Sundarban is that there are no Indian tourists – and apparently they come in herds when the weather conditions are more favourable. And observing wild animals with Indians, that silence bothers viscerally, it's not fun! 


The disadvantage of coming in May is that the local people hurry to celebrate the last weddings and therefore there are gigantic speakers (plugged to generators) in each village which blast Bollywood music (when it is not an old scratched and sizzling DVD). Being greeted like that after a very long trip to cross India for a “nature” stay, I swear if the heat had not left me KO, I think that I'd go and yell... At the same time in my daily life I can't do without music so if these speakers brighten up their life, how could I say anything? 


With all that, I enjoyed the simple menu of rice, chapatis, dal and vegetables – even if at the end of the 6th meal I started to feel some deficiencies... It also kinda annoyed me responding every day to the same questions of the new backpackers “and do you like working in India?”, “and how long you plan on staying?”, “when have you realised that you wanted to stay?” etc. And I've hated the local rice alcohol which has a horrible taste and almost no alcohol! 


But above all I loved the tours in the boat operated by a fisherman in the heart of the mangrove, with roots and branches everywhere. I had to fight to get the second session, which was not in the programme, but I can be quite persuasive ;) 


I loved the two hour walk in the village. I got transported somewhere else: perfect sand and cobblestones paths, naked children running after goats, women going to the well, old ladies walking topless, youngsters cycling, girls swimming in the ponds, courtyard of the cob houses full of animals, thatched roofs almost all equipped with solar panels. Almost no garbage lying around. Amazing colours with the sunset. Almost too picturesque to be true... 


I loved watching the stars at the night, lying on the ground, with a small breeze, and folk musicians playing... 


And I loved basking in the sun all day!

And listen the stories of tigers who eat up humans (40 every year), and fishermen or honey collectors (the villagers who are allowed one month per year to sink into the forest to collect honey) who survived. 


I imagine that the Sundarban (meaning the beautiful forest, or the beautiful jungle) looks very different after the rain, when the paddy field are green and the temperatures bearable. Nevertheless, I needed badly a change of air and scene, and I got it!!


A great trip!



india,west bengal,sundarban,jungle,tiger,safari,ecovillage

india,west bengal,sundarban,jungle,tiger,safari,ecovillage 


The dirty Frenchies exploring Sundarban…

 Here is an interesting angle to tell about my trip to Sundarban...

Departure from Kolkata at 8:30 in the morning for a 3 hour ride in a van falling into pieces. Thighs glued by the sweat to the fake leather seat. No need to complain; better to just try and avoid fainting by swallowing gallons of water. 


We arrive at the pier to embark on a motor boat that a guy is vigorously bailing out. It is midday, not a shadow of shadow, and the “cruise” is not ending – an hour and a half by 40 degrees seems to last much longer...

We finally get down on our island, where the eco-village is set up. Hell and damnation, there is network!! I do as planned (be without a phone for 4 days) and switch off my Blackberry as if there was no network: I'm on holidays!

On our left, a kind of big pond of brownish water in which a water buffalo is chilling. And in which we are invited to jump... Since we are not sure whether this is a joke, we first go and drop our stuff in the room. And, to my surprise (and I daresay even relief, since I had opted for “roots” holiday (without electricity)), there is a fan – so I won't die of heat! 

I enter the dark bathroom to discover that...


(Click on Lire la suite to read more)

Read more ...