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Sunday Salon: Where I’ve Been

The Sunday Salon.com

As many of you know, I spent most of August not at home. Where was I, you ask? In India, visiting my husband’s family. Some of my own family was able to visit at the same time, and we had a great trip. Some highlights: an overnight in a swanky resort, bathing elephants at nearby sanctuary, and a glorious sunset over the Indian Ocean.

I’m slowly catching up after a month away. I’m sorry to say that my Google Reader is getting the Mark-All-As-Read treatment. If you reviewed a book you loved, or read an excellent post on another book blog, please share the link with me so I don’t miss anything unmissable! I’m also giving myself a pass on the comments left over the past month. I read them all and very much appreciate your leaving them, but some are so old that a reply seems silly. So, I’m letting myself start fresh.

And now, without further ado, some pictures! (Captions are above the photo to which they refer.)

When we arrived at the resort, we were greeted with tender coconut water, straight out of the fruit:

The view from our porch

I got to take a tabla lesson from one of the resort’s musicians:

Houseboats on the backwaters:

Bathing the elephants at a nearby sanctuary:

One of the larger elephants heading out for a day of work…carrying his dinner:

Traditional Chinese fishing nets:

India 09

And finally, what trip would be complete without some book purchases? I can’t resist browsing books, no matter where I find them! From top to bottom: Fury by Salman Rushdie, In the Country of Last Things by Paul Auster, The Imam and the Indian by Amitav Ghosh, The Best of Roald Dahl (short stories), Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie, The Indian Epics Retold by R.K. Narayan, and The Fabric of Our Lives: The Story of Fabindia by Radhika Singh.

India books

On an unrelated note, Book Blogger Appreciation Week (BBAW) is coming up in mid-September. It’s the event that really got me into the book blogging community last year, and I’m very much looking forward to it again this year. If you’re a book blogger, be sure to check it out! And if you’re not, there will be plenty of interesting posts throughout the week from your favorite book bloggers. It’s a great time to discover new book blogs, too!

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  • http://bookspersonally.blogspot.com bookspersonally

    Oh how wonderful! (A place that is on my “someday” list.) Fantastic pictures, especially those elephants. So glad you had such an amazing adventure…. and welcome home :D

  • http://irisonbooks.wordpress.com Iris

    Those pictures are stunning. You must have had a wonderful trip! Glad to have you back now (even if I’m mostly lurking and haven’t left a comment in ages – sorry about that!).

  • http://agignac2.blogspot.com Amanda

    Wow! I’ve been marking as read a lot this summer and didn’t realize you were in India. Those pictures are wonderful! I’m jealous of you getting to bath the elephants. :D Sounds like a great trip!

    • Erin

      I didn’t say much about it until I’d gotten home, so you didn’t miss much :-)

  • http://loveyalit.com Em

    How fun! Where in India were you? I spent a semester of college based in Bangalore. I love India. Definitely a country I would love to visit again.

    • Erin

      We were in Kerala. We’re usually visiting family when we go and haven’t traveled much yet, but I absolutely plan to. I love the country and want to see all of it!

  • http://ardentreader.wordpress.com Christina

    Bathing elephants sounds like such fun! Glad to heat you had a great trip!

  • http://sophisticateddorkiness.com Kim (Sophisticated Dorkiness)

    Looks like a fabulous trip, I’m glad you had a good time. And of course you had to get some books. When I went to London a few years ago, I bought so many books I had to parcel them off into other people’s suitcases because I couldn’t fit them all in mine :)

    • Erin

      Had I had that option, trust me, I’d have brought home many more!

  • http://www.ragingbibliomania.net/ zibilee

    Oh, I am so thrilled for you that you got a chance to spend time in India! I am also very envious, as it’s a place that I one day want to visit. It looks wonderful and like there is a lot there to keep yourself busy! I also love the new stack of books you chose! A great trip all around, it seems!

  • http://www.farmlanebooks.co.uk Jackie (Farm Lane Books)

    Wow! Looks as though you had a fantastic trip! I’d love to go to India one day. I especially love your elephant photos – they are amazing animals to see up close. :-)

  • http://TheHouseoftheSevenTails Amy

    Welcome home, Erin! WHat a fantastic trip India must’ve beeen..particularly from your great photos! Love that you bathed the elephants. I’m sure it was really nice for your husband to see his family, too.
    Your book purchases are great, too!

  • Rainer Maria Rilke

    Glad you’re back to the tusk at hand!

    • Erin

      Har har :-)

  • http://wormhole.carnelianvalley.com Charlie

    How awesome! And the view from your room is beautiful!

  • http://alitareads.wordpress.com Alita

    Great pictures! It looks like it was a really great trip, and how fun to be able to share it with family :)

  • http://www.lifewithbooks.com Jenners

    Welcome back! It looks like a fantastic and amazing trip. Thanks for sharing with us. I think it is the right thing to give yourself a fresh start regarding blogging!!

  • http://herebedragons.posterous.com Hannah

    Oh my goodness welcome back!! The pictures look amazing :) I’m glad you had a great time! Let me know how the Roald Dahl short stories are. I ALMOST bought the BFG this week but didn’t. Maybe I should check his short stories instead?

    • Erin

      From the one I’ve read, Roald Dahl’s short stories are CREEPY (they’re for adults, not kids). His kids’ books could, I suppose, be considered a little odd, but they’re overlaid with a sort of magical fun, whereas his stories are just pure weirdness. The BFG is my favorite of his kids’ novels, I think, so I heartily endorse you reading it. I’m not sure you can swap out one for the other though. Might have to just pick the one that best suits your mood and leave the other for later :-)

  • http://niranjana.wordpress.com Niranjana (Brown Paper)

    Your vacation looks wonderful! And I always pick up dozens of books each time I visit India–some because they are so much cheaper, and others which aren’t available in North America. I have the same Penguin R.K.Narayan btw–it’s really good, simply and elegantly told without dumbing the epics down. I hope you post a review!

    • Erin

      I’m happy to hear about the Narayan! I’ve heard he’s really good with myth retellings. I will post a review…when I get to it, which may be less quickly than I like (silly review commitments!). I love book shopping in India, for exactly the reasons you cited. Though they’re not the lightest souvenirs to bring back, unfortunately!

  • http://www.lovelaughterinsanity.com Trish

    How awesome is that?! India is definitely a place I’d love to visit one day and very neat that your family was able to visit while you were there.

    And I like collecting books from places I travel as well.

  • http://www.stephandtonyinvestigate.com Steph

    Thanks so much for sharing those FABULOUS pictures highlighting your trip to India! And I always think books make the best souvenirs! :D

  • http://www.fizzythoguhts.com softdrink

    It sounds like a great trip…thanks for sharing the pictures!

  • http://reviews.rebeccareid.com Rebecca Reid

    love the elephants! What a great trip it sounds like you’ve had!

  • http://vishytheknight.wordpress.com Vishy

    Beautiful pictures, Erin! Glad to know that you had a wonderful time in India! I loved the pictures where the elephants are getting a bath :)

    • Erin

      Thanks, Vishy! I had an amazing trip. Bathing the elephants was so cool, and nothing I’d ever expected to do!

  • Colleen

    Were you in Kerala? I went there following a tour of North India and the houseboats and Chinese fishing nets look familiar! It is such a fascinating place – glad you had a chance to spend time there this summer.

    • Erin

      I was! How funny you recognized the houseboats and fishing nets. I think those are the two most iconic images of Kerala. That, and the Kathakali masks. How long ago did you take your tour? Where else did you go? I’d love to see more of the country, but so far, our trips have been primarily to visit family.

  • http://www.quirkygirlsread.wordpress.com quirky girls read-jehara

    What a lovely trip!!! One of my good friends is married to an Indian man. They went to India last December to visit his family. I’m so jealous. I have been wanting to go for ages. :) :) :)

    • Erin

      We had a fantastic time! Your friend is clever — December is the best time to visit, I hear. We’ve only been over the summer! It’s wonderful. If you ever get the chance to go, especially with someone who knows the country, GO! :-)