Happy New Year one and all! Pondicherry was a great place to spend the holiday. There were tons of Indian tourists, and the buz of energy in town was palpable.
The old French Quarter, where we stayed, starts with a broad promenade along the sea wall. The city has banned vehicles here from 6pm to 7:30am and everyone gets out to walk it in the cooler hours of the morning and evening.
Temps were between 85-90 during the day and didn't get much below 75 at night. Which was glorious, but also a bit of a tease since this wasn't the type of town I could go around in a bathing suit. Maybe a different seaside town in Kerala down the trail further.
There are some things you just don't eat in India. Like cheese pizza, it's just going to give you food poisoning. But Pondy is different! There is a large French population here, and many Indians speak French at home. They often tried French with us, until we bashfully informed them we were Americans (and then proceeded to feel like idiots for only speaking one language while most of them spoke 3 or 4). Anyway, the food... I had the best croissant of my life here! We ate several dilectable pasta dishes, and the best thin-crust wood-fired quatro formaggio pizza I've had since Europe! Oh and real coffee, which they call "filter coffee".
We will remember Pondicherry fondly. We enjoyed sea-front strolls, great food, and reading and people-watching from our balcony overlooking the waves of the Bay of Bengal.
It's off to the hills of Kodaikanal. Happy new year 2015 everyone!
Alison B. Sweeney
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