A Recount on… Our Kochi Art Biennale Trip By Aditee Woiwode

A trip full of laughter, fun and joy. Our trip to Kochi, Kerala was a wonderful learning experience as well as a joyful one to spend with our friends. Although this was new to many of us, we adapted well in the Kerala environment and enjoyed our time very much. Not only did this trip inspire our artistic minds, it also improved our knowledge about the culture in Kerala and the great history. We visited ancient synagogues, palaces and much more. The trip was something new to all of us that we experienced together, as a team that supported each other when it was overwhelming for one another. This school trip was something that I will never forget.

To start with, we reached the airport at 8:30 am, both nervous and excited. We stood in the line with our passport or Adhar card in our hands ready to start our adventure. When we entered, we were overjoyed to see our friends waiting for us. The aunties gave us our ID cards and made sure we were all ready. Later, we went through the security checks and waited patiently until everybody was finished. After the security checks, we had some time till our flight departure so we sat down together and shared some snacks. At 11 am we boarded the plane and started looking for our seats and settling down there, getting ready for one and a half hours in the air. After the plane took off, we experienced some turbulence that gave everybody butterflies in their stomach. Everybody had fun sharing and eating their snacks. At 12:30 pm we arrived in Kerala and formed lines to wait for our bus to pick us up and take us to the hotel. On the bus, my group and I played music, talked and danced. Approximately 45 minutes later we reached our hotel! As soon as we reached, we met Diana aunty who left a few days earlier. We ate lunch together. Once we finished lunch, our bus picked us up and took us to see a Kathakali dance performance. It was a treat to see the Kathakali artists getting ready for their performance. A few minutes after 5, we took the bus to the Jewish synagogue, which had hand-painted Chinese floor tiles and Belgium chandeliers. Now came the moment which we were waiting for all day. The excitement to know who our roommates would be. All of us were glad to have our friends as roommates. Yayy!!

At 7 am everyone had to wake up and get ready for the long day ahead. Together, we went down for breakfast which was toast, butter, jam and fruits. Once we all finished breakfast we formed lines again and waited for our bus to pick us up and take us to the Dutch Palace. There, we saw an ancient palanquin from the 18th century, ancient murals on the walls and the traditional clothes for the royal family. When everyone was done looking and exploring, we split up into two groups. One group went to a clay sculpting session and the other one went to the AspinWall. At the clay sculpting session, we bonded with nature and played games together. In the end we went searching for something in nature that tantalizes us and made it out of clay, but some people wanted to be creative and just used their imagination. At the AspinWall, we got a small tour of some of the paintings, installations and even watched some short films. The painting that caught my attention was the 365 paintings of the year, where the artist painted one painting every day for one year. Finally, we went back to our buses and went shopping in the market with the money we brought for souvenirs. It was the end of the day and we were tired but not for long. We were looking forward to having loads of fun with our friends once aunties and sir went into their rooms. We were also excited about going home and seeing our parents the next day.

We all woke up at around 7:00 am and got ready for half a day in the airport and on the plane. Before leaving our rooms, we each made sure that we didn’t leave anything behind and that everything is in our bags and suitcases. Then, we went down with our bags to eat our last meal in Kochi. Once again we waited for our buses to take us to the airport. Though we were unhappy to be leaving the beautiful, green state, we were also excited to go back home and sleep in our own beds. After about 45 minutes on the bus, we reached the airport (fun fact: Kochi airport runs on solar energy) and entered one by one after our teachers gave us our passports and Adhar cards. Once we entered the airport, we stood in line and waited until it was our turn to check in our suitcases. There was some time till our flight which was at 12:30 pm, so we sat down. The teachers allowed the people who had extra money to buy themselves a snack from a snack shop near to where we were sitting. At around 12:15 pm we collected our things and got ready to board the Indigo flight. The people who entered the plane looked for their seats and settled down. On the plane, we ate snacks, played games and talked to each other. We landed at approximately 2:00 pm, happy to be back in Chennai. Next, we got our suitcases from the check-in luggage and went back into the line. Everybody said goodbye to their friends and to our teachers, sad that the adventure was over but grateful that we had the opportunity to go on this wonderful trip. At 2:30 pm our parents picked us up, ecstatic to see us.

Overall, this trip was exciting and memorable. Even though this was new to many of us, in the end we all enjoyed it and were quite sad that we only got to stay for two nights and one full day. We will be forever grateful for everything that the teachers did for us and all the activities they prepared to make us enjoy this trip. Although some people were homesick, we were all happy to be there with our best friends and wonderful teachers. We made some unforgettable memories together on this amazing trip and hope to have more trips like this in the near future. I also learned some tips in art that I will always remember and use. These kinds of trips make the school year even more enjoyable as well as educational. I will always remember this trip and how it was one of my best school memories.

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