In the southern Indian city of Kochi, this mother and child sported bindis between their eyebrows, as well as sparkly bangles and dramatic eye makeup. The young mother’s hair was also trimmed with a garland of fresh, aromatic jasmine – a practice that is customary with many of the ladies in the state of Kerala. On two separate afternoons, locals treated me to jasmine garlands, purchasing them from a flower merchant’s stand and then tying them into my hair. It was such a beautiful gesture and a generous way of sharing this custom with us. I was so very touched by my new friends’ random acts of kindness!
Published by Tricia A. Mitchell
Tricia A. Mitchell is a freelance writer and a co-founder of Eloquence. Born in Europe but raised in the United States, she has lived in Valletta, Malta, as well as Heidelberg, Germany. An avid globetrotter who has visited more than 65 countries, she has a penchant for off-season travel. Tricia has learned that travel’s greatest gift is not sightseeing, rather it is the interactions with people. Some of her most memorable experiences have been sharing a bottle of champagne with distant French cousins in Lorraine, learning how to milk goats in a sleepy Bulgarian village, and ringing in the Vietnamese New Year with a Hanoi family. She welcomes any opportunity to practice French and German, and she loves delving into a place’s history and artisanal food scene. A former education administrator and training specialist, Tricia has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in international relations. She and her husband, Shawn, married in the ruins of a snowy German castle. They’ve been known to escape winter by basing themselves in coastal Croatia or Southeast Asia. Though they are currently nomadic, they look forward to establishing a European home someday. Her writing has appeared in Fodor’s Travel, Frommer’s, and International Living. View more posts