After arriving at our hotel in Kochi my family and I wanted to take a tour of the backwaters on a boat. Since our hotel was not too far from the boat dock, we took the most readily available and least expensive transportation available – the auto-rickshaw (commonly called auto). It was an interesting experience to ride in the back of one of these tiny three-wheeled vehicles that is powered with a small motorcycle engine especially when it had the rain protection in place (see photo). However, it became a wild ride on the way back to the hotel in the rain after the boat ride because only one auto could be found.

A ride in an auto-rickshaw, inexpensive transportation in India, can be a wild ride. With four of us in the back, we put my son in the front seat with the driver. Avi is the strongest of the bunch so we thought he could hold on better than the rest of us. I was afraid that one of us would fall out as we zigged and zagged around the corners. Normally since the sides are open, you may get catch a breeze for the natural air conditioning. Since it was raining, the driver had the rain covering which is just a tarpaulin that is buttoned to one side. From the back we couldn’t see a thing. It was almost like riding blind. Autos have no suspension at all so you feel every bump and hole in the road. You may feel like you are playing real life Frogger but for the economy minded or the adventure seeking traveler, it can’t be beat!

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