Myles Harrington

The Night I Nearly Died and Other Cool Adventures

In India on July 3, 2010 at 5:10 pm

Whenever I explain to people I got a loan out to go travelling I always make the same joke about if I die while I’m away I’ll never have to pay it back. Last Tuesday night it nearly happened. I had moved in to a room with a bloke called David, one of the Brits I’d met on the beach in Palolem. After a couple of beers and some World Cup action it was time for bed. I never normally use mosquito coils, mainly because I’m not that bothered about the bites but David picked one up from the girls on the way home. He hung it on a nail on the wall and we went off to sleep. At 6am I got woken up by David shouting “something’s wrong”. I looked around the room and it was full of thick smoke and his bag that was strategically placed under the coil was alight. Another few minutes and it could have been a very different story. Luckily he sensed something was wrong.

The Seagull Guest House massive

Once we’d coughed up our lungs and gone back to bed for another couple of hours it was time to enjoy the day, so the eight of us rented scooters for the day for 150 Rs per scooter (just over two pounds). We wanted to try to find some waterfalls. We didn’t know where they were, if there were any or what direction to go in. We got really lucky and stumbled across some beautiful falls about 20km from Palolem in a protected forest area. Being frugal we’d only filled up the scooters with a litre of petrol each and luckily we made it back to the rental man in the pouring rain.

The falls we found by chance

I’m not really much of a beach person and because we had been so lucky with the rain it was only a matter of time before it turned sour. So four of us (Flo, Hattie, David and I) decided to leave Goa behind and head to Hampi in Karnataka. I’d been told by so many people I’ve met on my travels that Hampi is amazing and a great place to spend a few days and it is on my route down to Chennai anyway. The only trains from Goa to Hospet (for Hampi) were every other day and at 8am. So it meant another long train journey in the day, well not too long, only seven hours this time.

We tried to check in to a guest house called the Laughing Buddha, because again I’d been told it’s the place to stay while in town. They were renovating so they sent us down to one of their other concerns The Rolling Stone Home Stay. The Rolling Stone only had two sleeping options. One stone hut which we let the girls have and a shack on stilts that David and I snapped up with an amazing view over the river to Hampi itself, a cool breeze and a bargain price of 100 Rs.

The view from the shack on stilts

The shack on stilts

One of the main attractions in Hampi is the monkey temple of the hillside. Just a 6km trek from our guest house, we decided it would make a lovely afternoon stroll. We weren’t quite prepared for the bouldering mission that we encountered after just the first kilometre. It was well worth the climb and 600 steps to the top because the view was stunning.

Amazing view of Hampi from the monkey temple

A couple of the little rascals

  1. Loving your work Myles. Almost getting killed to avoid paying back the loan is genius. Good luck with that.


  2. […] a Saturday afternoon, and it was until the rain hit. Then it turned out a similar way to how my scooter trip in Goa went, with me drenched and shivering, looking like a bloke who’s gone swimming in the […]

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