Sally Mair - Loving life

By Sallymair

Breakfast at.... Hotel Sri Madhuram

Not quite Tiffany's, but the food is good! This is a pure-veg restaurant in Palamkottai is the twin town to Tirunelveli and is actually the town where I spend most of my time. (Tirunelveli sits on the other side of the Thamirabarani River which is half way between the Cathedral and Tirunelveli Junction for those who have been here.) Tirunelveli is the older town and the better known as well as the postal town so its name is more widely used. Back to pure - veg,... as the town has a large Hindu population, many of whom are vegetarian, around 50% or restaurants are vegetarian.
This is the restaurant at which I have my breakfast every day, my two puri served with potato masala, sambaar and various optional chutneys too, two coffees, one of which is for Raja and a one litre bottle of mineral water costs me 115 rupees, around £1.20. Today's collage is of - the man who brings me my breakfast; the kitchen where it is made (photo taken with the manager's consent); and two different types of Dosa. This is very noble of me as anybody who knows me will tell you. "Sally doesn't like dosa" ....
or idly for that matter either. Both are made of a fermented, sour, rice dough, and you can keep them!!!. It's a taste I really don't like and as I eat most things, I was quite relieved to find out that they are made from more or less the same dough but one is steamed so it's spongey and white in colour, the other is fried like a crepe. So at least I'm consistent in my dislike. These shots are of a cone dosa and a paper dosa. Dosa come in many different forms and are an absolute staple in South India. As I say, you can keep them, give me puri any day. Puri are in my extra, in case you've forgotten what they look like and are basically deep fried chapatti. You'll notice the banana leaf cut to fit the plate, it's considered both healthy and a treat to eat off a banana leaf and this way you can carry the food out from the servery rather than serve it onto the leaf at the table. I don't have to order my breakfast any longer, it is brought to me as soon as I arrive.
My last day in Tirunelvelli so I'm all packed up now and ready to go back to Kovalam, it's around a three and a half to four hour drive on roads of mixed quality. Soon there will be a dual carriageway for most of the route, but that doesn't necessarily mean that all traffic on one carriageway will be going in the same direction. It will avoid many of the towns though which will help.
I'll try to leave straight after breakfast and arrive after 2pm, but my room will be ready whenever I arrive which is nice.
Hope I sleep well, change and the anticipation of change always keeps me awake. A few days at Kovalam to unwind then back to reality and winter in Edinburgh.

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