Fort Cochin is an area I love. It is bang on the seashore. One can see huge ships and trawlers passing by its green waters. You will always see wooden fisher boats boxing up and down on the seabed as eager fishermen throw their huge blue fishing nets into the sea in the hope of making their first catch of the day. The sea is calm but active as the neighbouring sand bears testimony to the many passers-by who walk the shore every evening. The sun shines bright and builds an orange and yellow rainbow in the sky.
I and my team walked on the sand in the lookout for the perfect location where I could start talking about travelling and the stories I uncover as I move forward in my journey. I spotted an ice cream cart and bought a mango bar which I licked to my heart’s content. The cool breeze blew over my moist skin as I delivered my speech one by one in full mood and action. I drew people’s attention to the huge Chinese fishing nets which were hoisted high in the sky by wooden poles tied together by nylon ropes as thick as pythons. It takes more than a few fishermen to work this contraption, but as they lower the net, they know that they are in for a big fish catch. These nets are gigantic with great reach. Add fish food on top of the net and that’s all you need. In hours, the nets are pulled up from the water to reveal the real catch of the day. This is then cleaned and separated. The fish is then washed and put into wooden crates to be taken to the fish market where they are sold for handsome profits. This is the peek into the day-to-day lives of the fishermen and locals living in Fort Cochin. It also has well-built British style beach villas with swimming pools. It is a perfect place to stay.
The beach is full of eateries, shops selling gift items and clothes, ice cream carts and cola vans. It is a place for families to enjoy free time with each other and to take a meditative stroll around the seabed. I spoke all evening till the sunset and we got a lot of footage of ships sailing in the sea with gulls flying in the air. The waste lying on the sea and the shore sand and the pungent smell of fish did put me off this place from time to time.
I seem to be running out of things to say and stories to tell but I still manage to slip in some new anecdote or information in my speeches to keep the audience engaged. But above all else, I will remember the gigantic blue Chinese fishing nets, which to me, is the pride of Fort Cochin.