31 December 2009
If you ask anyone on the road from Varkala, where Anjengo is, you would be met with quizzical looks. Because, of all the anglicised Malayalee names, the most injustice has been done to Anchuthengu or as the British would like to call their fort Anjengo. Going by its looks, the fort doesn't do much justice to its history either. The most dominating of the British fort south of Bassein, it looks like a dilapidated godown. Godown it was, where the British stored spices, more preciuos than gold. But you cant go in because even though its not a holiday or monday or even a hartal and you are well within the 5 pm ASI time cutoff, the gatekeeper is not there. This most innocuous of Kerala explanations is the last straw, and you would want to get out of this place pronto. But wait, there is a huge black and white tower, well a lighthouse to be precise right next to the fort. You are barely on time but the attendant is very kind, he opens the lighthouse and you climb a vertiginous six storeys to a fascinating view of the beach, the coconut covered land and the serpentine back waters. Its only now, you realise why should the british build one of their most impregnable forts here.