After a fairly manic first week in Goa, trying to see everyone, getting my bearings a bit, and getting used to the general chaos of life, our second week has thankfully been at a much slower pace.
Life has been dominated by getting frazzled in the sun, Ting Dong (beach tennis), markets, and of course dealing with my uncontrollable desire for tandoori chicken!
On Wednesday we went down to Anjuna for the weekly Flee Market so the people who left this week could pick up some tat for next to nothing. Some people may have taken this a little far…as it turned out, Spud’s girlfriend Rach had planned this by bringing barely any clothes and instead bringing 2 additional travel bags just for hauling the vast array of tat back to England. The Anjuna market was hot, dusty, and tiring, although vibrant and in some cases very interesting. Earlier that day we had been discussing the rather unique trade of ear cleaning, something I simply didn’t believe was a thing. That was until as we were leaving the market for lunch an unassuming Indian man began to take a strange interest in my ears, so I very swiftly ducked out of the way of his dirty finger which appeared to be making a b-line directly for my ear, swatted his hand away and gave him a very stern ‘No!’ and a disapproving hand gesture. There’s some strange people knocking about.
On the face of things there is not a huge amount to report from the past week. We have spent a lot of time driving between different places along our stretch of coastline, from our house in Morjim down to Vagator and Anjuna on the other side of the Chapora River, and also further north from our house up to the stunning beaches of Ashvem. On Thursday night we ventured further up the coast to Arambol to grab some dinner and go to a reggae night at one of the shacks on the beach, although Arambol is a bit of a shithole (you can tell it used to be beautiful, but – similar to Anjuna, etc. has just been ravaged by tourism, unlike many of the beaches slightly further south), the night was great fun and chance to drink a lot of India’s local rum, ‘Dirty’ Old Monk.
Earlier in the week (on Tuesday) I drove with Soph down to Saligao to meet a guy called Solomon from The Green Lion India group. I first met Solomon at work in the UK when he visited my office in Bristol and after I told him I would be visiting Goa in Nov / Dec he insisted that I come to see him and the team he works with. We spent the morning driving round to a few of the different volunteer programmes that they run, including a small kindergarten project, an elderly care home, and an animal welfare centre caring from sick and injured dogs, cats and cows. It was great fun, we met some of the volunteers, and have agreed with the team of coordinators that we would return in December to help with their Christmas party for all the kids.
And finally, just something that I would like to question about the natural world. Why give a beetle wings?! A strange question I know, but I have never known a more stupid creature to be gifted with the powers of flight. You can be driving along on your scooter, nice and casually, and then all of a sudden you get slapped in the face by what feels a bit like a flying brick. These over sized critters can often be found frolicking around our porch area, not once have I see one land on it’s feet. The landing of a beetle usually goes along the lines of: Fly around uncontrollably, speed-up for no reason, hit a wall with a loud thud, land on the floor with a equally loud thud, lie dazed and confused on the floor, try desperately (and usually fail) to get back on its feet after regaining consciousness. Fucking stupid creatures…
Anyway bug related rant over, photos to come soon.