I got to sleep in a little and got up at eight. Packed for the plane trip then walked into the center of town. I spent an hour getting the battery in my dive computer changed. I'm not planning on using it for awhile, but this way it's ready when I want to - and all that diving without it made me nervous. After that I couldn't think of anything else to do, so I went to the internet cafe. I spent an hour there then decided to head back to the guest house. On the way I stopped in at a tea shop for some short eats (a snack), then remembered that I had wanted to send some books home. I only had a half an hour until I was supposed to leave from the guest house, but I couldn't imagine carrying the reef guide with me through India and I wanted to keep it, so I set out for the post office. I walked back in to town and found the post office with out a problem, though it was farther than I thought it was. I bought packing materials, then packed my box in front of the clerk, who then told me I had to go get it checked by security. I waited, and luckily they didn't make me unpack. The postage was going to be nearly $40 but I insisted on the printed materials rate so then I had to cut a hole in the box so the contents could always be seen, then go back to security, then fill out paperwork - but it cost a quarter the price. By the time I left the post office I should have left the guesthouse 20 minutes earlier.
I took a taxi back to my room, changed into dry clothes, through my stuff together and was out the door. I had a bit of trouble finding a taxi so I had to walk a ways - so much for the dry clothing! At the ferry I had to wait about 20 minutes for the dhoni to fill up. By the time I got to the airport I was an hour later than I was planning - good think I was planning on getting there more than two hours early. There was no problem checking in and converting the remainder of my Rufya (they wanted an exchange slip, but when I pointed out that they hadn't given me one they let it slide). I wandered through the duty free shops - incredibly expensive. A pleasant short flight later I was back in India. As usual I managed to pick the slowest immigration line - I was one of the last people through. Outside the airport I had a quick argument with the taxi drivers, but as soon as they realized I was returning they gave in and one of them took me for my price. A short ride later, and exactly an hour after landing in India, I'm back at the Hotel Greenland. The manager hadn't gotten my email, but they still had a room for me - it just needed to be cleaned. So I checked my email again, then wandered the beach. It was very nice to be back in Kovalam - lots of people remembered me and asked how the Maldives were. I watched an ok sunset from the beach rocks, then a spectacular post sunset sky from the beach itself. Back at the hotel I unpacked, then went to my favorite restaurant for diner. Afterwards I went to one of the beach cafes for beers and movies the end of Charlie's Angels (again), and the There's something about Mary (also again). All is all - and somewhat surprisingly - it was very nice to be back in India.