Here we are at the beach again, kind of reminiscent of Goa, except with slightly less polluted skies (thanks to the recent rains) and maybe a bit more amenities such as shops, restaurants and guest houses more conveniently located in a cluster.
It poured with rain basically the entire time we were in Pondicherry (cleared up the day we left) but it didn't really dampen our spirits much, since there wasn't much to see there anyway. Much of the time was spent hanging around in Coffee.com, and talking to Davide, our new Italian friend. Other highlights included seeing giant sewer rats, one dead, and later another live one which had a body about a foot long. When we saw it, Davide exclaimed 'Incredible India!', lol.
Yesterday at the Pondicherry bus station we encountered a bunch of unhelpful people in the effort to get to Mamallapuram, and also a fragrant drunk who had puke all down his arm. A security guard squirted a whole bottle of water at him, after which he stumbled away, barfing periodically on the ground. Classy.
When we got to the guest house I'd booked over the phone, I immediately got a sinking feeling when I saw the sign outside that said 'cheap and best', because that usually translates to 'crap hole', and we were proven right once again. All the dogs barking, people chipping away at rocks, the nearby mosque with its prayer calls and some idiots yelling at each other throughout the night didn't really help either. In the morning a monkey nonchalantly wandered onto the landing outside our room and started tipping over bins to look for food. Fortunately we've found a much nicer place now closer to the beach, hopefully it should be a bit quieter as well...
Today we visited the main two tourist attractions in Mamallapuram, the Shore Temple and Five Rathas, which were very underwhelming. It also didn't help that every time you got close to either of them you had to pass through a gauntlet of hawkers, beggars, and people offering to be your guide. I totally don't care about being rude anymore though, any semblance of politeness is only used by those people as an opening for pushing you even harder for their own purposes, so it's better to just ignore them completely, which we're very skilled at doing now.