Today is my last day in India....aside from me, all that's left of my Habitat for Humanity team in Chennai is Bob, Robbin and Jennifer. Lisa, my roommate, left for the airport at 2:30am and I've been awake ever since...just my luck!!! With nothing else to do, I decided to repack my backpack...God it's heavy...it weighed 13 kg when I left, it will be interesting to see what it weighs now.
After breakfast at the hotel, I met up with the rest of the team and we headed to Spencer Mall to check email an do some very last minute shopping. We took a tuk tuk for the 10 minutes ride...it can be a challenge to fit four Canadians in one of these things...glad we didn't loose anyone along the way!!! Once back at the hotel, Jennifer, Robbin and I headed down to the hotel restaurant for a bit of lunch and masala tea...delicious!!! Jennifer and I decided to take a walk around the area..not a whole lot around our hotel and many places were closed as it was the middle of the afternoon.
For dinner we all decided to go to Dakshin's at the Park Sheraton Hotel and Towers. Jennifer and Robbin went here when they first arrived in India and said it was a great experience. This is a celebrated restaurant that features the rich flavors of South Indian cuisine, with live Indian instrumental music. We decided to take a taxi to the hotel and when we arrived, the lobby was full of people and security. Being oblivious to what was actually going on, we walked into the lobby right into the middle of everything. It turns out this hotel is the home of the Chennai Super Kings...the cricket team...who were playing the Deccan Chargers that evening and the players where just exiting the hotel. Apparently I was talking to one of the players when we were trying to move through the crowd...kind of funny to find this out after the fact....a bit like running into some NHL players at a hotel in Canada!!
When we made out way to the restaurant we realized it wasn't open for another 45 minutes. We hung out at the hotel...very beautiful by the way...I finally got a postage stamp I've been looking for and I was even offered a free ticket to the cricket match happening that evening...too bad I wasn't here one more day or I would have loved to have gone....Indian people are crazy over cricket!! When the restaurant finally opened, we had the most spectacular service...we told them we had to leave by 8:30pm to catch our flights and they made sure that happened. We had some great traditional Indian cuisine, good wine and listened to some light Indian music. A great way to finish off a fantastic three weeks in India.
By 8:30pm we were on our way back to the hotel where Jennifer, Bob and Robbin caught their cab to the airport. My flight doesn't leave until 4:45am, so I have another four hours at the hotel....last to depart. I said my goodbyes...kind of surreal that this experience is coming to an end...and headed back to my room to try and catch some rest. Unfortunately sleep was not in the playing cards, so it looks like I will be heading to the airport after being up for almost 24 hours.
At 1am I got a call that my taxi was ready to take me to the airport...goodbye Chennai and Indian!!!