Goa Part 3


The night at VAGATOR beach was spooky and exciting. We had dinner at a place near the road that leads to the beach.There were a few foreigners, who were also in the tables adjacent to us, as some of our photography flashes seemed to disturb them. We werent into anything naughty there, but then as soon as the food started to come, our hands were more focussed on eating than on the click button. Some of our Tamil jokes, were actually understood by the nepali cook, who was gawking at us. The legend was that he spent three years at a resort in ECR(East Coast Road in Chennai).

Thats Aanand in the background who is ruing the decision that we made to come to vagator beach.His idea of a holiday was to spend the night charging the mobile at our room :-)

That's Sabari and I having drinks after our dinner(dont mind the frooti, but I dont like beer)

After a sumptuous dinner we proceeded to walk to VAGATOR beach where the full moons light basked over the wet sands and the huge rocks.I went ahead and stood near the ocean, wetting my feet in the waves that lashed across the rocks.The lovely colour of the ocean against the moonlight, made it all the more excitingto just sit there and let the waves do all the talking. The guys who accompanied me, were shit scared and wanted to return home to the hostel.One of the other reasons, they wanted to return home was that some of them were tired after a 27 hour journey. Vagator is just the place for a naughty evening. Vagator beach has 2 disco's close by 9 bar and Club Cabana, which can be accessed by climbing the hill. The hilly part of vagator beach also has a flat helipad landing place, which has a few chairs across the edge of the beach cliff.This is unofficially the smooching point for lovers.I remember many couples blissfully busy, making hay while the moon shone :-).

I heard from the locals that Vagator beach has 2 parts to it.The one we were standing was called the big Vagator beach, which most Indians frequent.There is supposedly a little vagator beach to the left, which more so has only foreigners.They seemingly have named it the"Tel Aviv" beach.

I wanted to explore the beach and the spooky streets around Vagator, but my friends had enough, they were in no mood for any adventure.So they forced me to fix a cab and return home to Mapusa, the place we were staying(actually it was Peddem, close to Mapusa).There ended the day of 28th December sitting and charging our mobiles in our room

The next day, I was the first to get up at 6 15 in the morning, and decided to take a stroll around the place I was staying. I managed to see some lovely goan houses, all decked up for the new year.There was something about Peddem, that had an air of easiness about it. There was also a playground nearby which seemed shrouded in the morning mist. I must have walked about 2-3 kilometres in the morning exploring peddem on either side of the Mumbai Goa highway and enjoyed it as there was hardly any crowd or honking vehicles. Idling was fun there after a long time.

Adding to the fun was the colourful houses that were on display there

As I was busy exploring the colourful goan houses, I didnt notice that I had 4 dogswho were silently following me.The 4 became 7 in a minute as dogs surrounded me and I knew the golden rule of "never run before a dog", and slowly but steadily made every step, swallowing a few heartbeats as the dogs advanced. Thankfully due to some cyclists and a few jeeps the dogs had to give way and I walked a little faster and took some crazy route to reach the hostel,where I was staying.I was walking in new surroundings and had lost my way, in my escapade against the dogs. I kept faith in my ability to spot the correct way back home and thankfully, joined a road that took me straight to my hostel at Peddem.

After a round of idling I head back to our room and the guys are still fast asleep. I decide to entertain myself by watching Tendulkar's innings the previous evening on the Television that is there in the reception. After a couple of hours, the guys are ready to see Goa,and we walk across the peddem road to take a bus to Mapusa. On reaching Mapusa , we decide to go to Arambol beach(Rather, I ).This must rank as one of the best decesions I have taken in my life :-).

Arambol is 30 kilometers from Mapusa,and is accesible via the local buses, which works out very cheap at 15 rs a ticket. Bikes and cabs are other options available to reach Harmal Village that surrounds Arambol beach. We take a bus, that goes in the direction of Morjim, Mandrem and Kerim and get down at Arambol an hour after we started.

It was a pretty hot day, and standing a hour in a crowded bus, has sapped us of our energies and we get down to take some liquid refreshments.Some go for Pepsi, Some for beer, while Arvind and I go for sugarcane juice.Soon others follow and also order 2 glasses of sugarcane juice and a banana to keep us fit for the activity in the beach all afternoon.

We wade through tall trees and plantations and pass through several churches and cloth shops. Some of the guys decide to stop over to shoot photographs, while some get enamoured by the various colours on display by the cloth merchants.

and then ....as the trees and the huts clear, we see a pristine beach which catches our attention.The beach is lovely, and I see people swimming quite deep into the beach.The Outlook Traveller reports that Arambol beach is safe for swimming and I stand by that, after spending hours swimming on the ocean.The beach is quite a long horizontal stretch,that also has a fresh water lake in between the beach.The beach has miles of wet sand, an indication that the low tides are in operation.

We sit down at a place near the ocean and begin to throw all our accoutres into a common bag.We place our clothes,glasses,watches,mobiles in the bag and strip ourselves down to our basic minimums.Some of the guys..want to feel the warmth before they plunge into the ocean, so they still stay put there. I walk across the wet sand and plunge into the waters.The feeling of the chill water on a hot day can just be the next best feeling to the sensuality of biting a crisp dairy milk chocalate.

Soon Kishore and Arvind join me in the water. A few metres ahead we see a broken bottle.We decide to have a swiming race, as to who would get it first. All three of us, wade hard through the water but are stopped in our tracks, as we sight a couple trying out various "positions" of love making in the water.We decide to not to interrupt them in their intimate moments, but cant help noticing the topless lady as she walks past us, as she makes a headway to the coast, with her partner.

Welcome to Arambol.... a rather pristine...nude beach, with no heavy indian gazers...each one does his private thing, and thats why I like the beach.Spooky as it may seem, its a lovely beach, if you just want to forget the busy humdrum of life in the city.

We spend a few more hours in the water, and I spend some time in a new beach hobby.After a session in the sea, I would come back to the coast and smear mud all over me.That would basically be wet mud to stick better, followed by a round of dried sand, and yo thats already looking like a bufoon. I did manage to attract the attention of quite a few onlookers, but I liked the feeling of mud all over me, and then I would wash the mud, by lying on the wet coast,waiting for the waves to remove every sinew of mud that was invested on my body. It felt divine, untill my stomach growled and grumbled for lunch.

We just turned back and hit a shack for our lunch.We had quite a heavy lunch, which had cheese pizza and french fries for starters.Then we ordered dal fry and gobi,for which we helped ourselves to a few butter naans, and washed it down with a glass of Lassi.Sabari was the only guy, who apart from all this had 2 bottles of Kingfisher beer and a fresh catch of roasted fish,apart from chicken biryani.

After a heavy lunch at 4 pm, we then started walking across the wide expanse of Arambol beach.We had to bypass a mountain and in the small passage across the mountains were spread numerous cloth shops.Some of the guys were busy buying the goan trance "hare rama" and "Om" kinda T shirts, while I chose to stay aloof and rested at a nearby joint with my legs firmly placed on table and my eyes gazed on the excellent view that I had from the seat where I was perched.

After some bargaining, the guys had finally bought some souveneirs, and we were finally on our way to the next beach,which was an extension of Arambol beach, called the Sweet lake beach.The sweet lake beach, was a smaller beach than the main Arambol beach and had an amazing view with tree top shacks and paragliding options available.The waves and the current are extremely strong, in the evenings and its advisable to stay floating till chest deep water and not to venture beyond that.

Some of the guys were too tired and relegated themselves to the rocks.Arvind and I, were the only ones interested in any beach adventure.We repeated the mud-bath and walked across the expanse of the beach, getting curious looks from onlookers.As we strode along, we observed that this beach had far more people in the nude, with even more ladies being topless. I guess as Indian's staying in the sun for hours sunbathing, was probably something we werenot used to, as we came from a tropical climate.Arvind and I decided to have a moon bath, where we would lie on the beach after moonlight, as we would not be able to bear the heat of the sun.

We went to the extreme end of the beach and decided to venture out into the waters.We stayed there for a little more than hour, waiting for large waves to toplle our stance in the water. Next to us, were a couple and a lone lady in her 40's. All of us exchanged a few pleasantries in the water, and some general advice on what were the safe limits of staying in the ocean. Arvind and I spread ourselves and decided to take some rest,while the couple next to us, went into passionate love making. At this point Arvind and I, decided to leave them at peace and went inside the water for another dip.When we came out the couple's clothes were near the coast and the couple were totally nude, though not into making love. I at any point did not want to disturb them, but since my glasses were not be seen on the mud, I realized that my glasses were probably masked by the clothes of the couple strewn on the mud. Errr..I had to go upto them and ask them, if my glasses were behind their clothes.And lo it was....I spent a few minutes chatting with the lady on the next beach ahead,as I realized that they would feel a little uncomfortable by or prescence. She didnt mind talking to me in her state of nudity and directed me to another beach, across the mountain. Arvind and I immideately set foot and had covered a kilometre up,when the sun set and we realized that we it would notbe safe to trek back barefoot in the darkness.

We went back and reached the sweet lake beach, and spent some time basking in the moonlight as the couple didnt seem to mind our prescence.We were in the water for about half an hour, when we saw that 6 people were now there on the coast, and were getting ready for something.Thats when my friends came searching for us, from the other side of the beach, admonishing us for straying across so late in the ocean. They came, and they drove away the foreigners to put their clothes on.

We bid bye to our friends, the firangs (??? for the past half hour)..and set back to Arambol beach.We actually in the interim period did book an accomadation that was under the stars on the beach for 50 rs a night, but some of the guys objected and we had to return back to our hostel. If anyone does get a chance to go here, do take some one of the opposite sex, along with you..to enjoy the lovely full moon evening agaisnt the dark bluish skies and the rampaging waves. The fact we were 6 stags, did no good to either of us ..all dreaming of if's and but's....

We had an awesome dinner across the beach, in a shack and this was probably one of the most divine nights that we would have enjoyed in our Goa trip. Arambol Rocks...big time for the excellent options it has of food joints,beach shacks, mountain views, the lovely water and of course a non interfering crowd.

One of the best things to do at night, is to plug your walkman, and take a walk across the wetter parts of the beach and lo you feel the inner peace and a sense of calm, that seemed to be lost in your daily journey to work.

Expect more updates soon..........(with Pictures)


So near yet 14 runs far

West Indian Cricket, over the years have produced very few solo heroes who stand tall amidst the ruins. Some that I can think of are instances where indivudual heroics just add spice to an otherwise insipid performance. Lets go right back to Richie Richardson quitting the scene after the 96 world cup. Lara's twin centuries against the aussies in the carribean, Ricardo Powell's masterful 124 off 93 balls in the finals of the Coco Cola Championships against (who else !!!???) India, Samuel's charge against the Aussies in 2001 and his century against India at Vizag in 2002, Chanderpaul's 150 against the South Africans in 1999, and of course looking at Team moments , the best ones being the incredible 418 record breaking chase against the Australians at Antigua and the victory in the ICC Champions Trophy 2004. These are a few bright glistening moments amidst the appalling losing streak that the men from the carribbean have become used to.

But hey ..things are changing arent they? The West Indies have now bounced back tremendously since their home one day series against Zimbabwe and India, and though may really not have found all the answers to being a happy and winning unit, they are definetely on their way there.

Sometimes defeat can be the elixir of life that one may be looking for, as in defeat, one is forced to think of their insecurities and their battle with them.It may take anything from a second to a few years to conquer the demons of the mind, but as long as the desire to drive away the demons of defeat is there, hope can spring up like light at the end of a dark tunnel.
The West Indies have probably matured like that, over the last 10 years where they played not to lose heavily.The year 2005 being their worst, with 2 victories out of 18 matches, ending up last in the table of 13 teams. Its been a remarkable change for them in the year 2006, beating Australia thrice (No Team, except South africa did that last year) and also some of the other teams, and finishing 4th in the 2006 odi tables.

Somebody's whose stood through all through those losses and seen the team go from bad to worse and now slowly rising like the phoenix, has been Shivnarine Chanderpaul(along with Lara). Chanderpaul's innings yesterday seemed like a great greek tragedy in the sense that the old warrior fought when all was lost, and seemed to take the battle to the enemy's camp, sending frissons down Dravids spine.

There is a sense of ruggedness in bis batting.He may not posses the most sublime off frive or the flick, nor may be there any elegance in his stance,but all he has is the courage to conquer oppositions by his dogged resolve and batting. Yesterday his innings at Nagpur was a treat to the person who could believe that miracles do happen. His innings bordered on the mundane for a while before a sleeping giant woke up and decided to make India pay for their lapse(The catch Sreesath dropped). The consecutive fours off the bowling of Agarkar and Sreesanth made the bowlers frustrated. 3 fours after the dropped catch made agarkar fume. Sreesanth started the next over attempting to atone his sins of dropping chanderpaul and he too was smoted by Chanderpaul for 3 effortless boundaries before Chanderpaul unluckily gave the strike to Ramdin, who started the beginnning of the end.

Though 59 of 23 looked a distant possibility, when it resuced to 33 of 12, I was still biting my nails with a "what if " sign, as Chanderpaul's grit was like robinhood fighting for his land. What was then hot fire, now turned into a damp squib, when Chanderpaul gave up the fight in the last 2 overs.The warrior ran out of steam, but played an incredible innings,under pressure.What actually made me chew my nails was, the fact Chanderpaul was hitting the ball at will wherever he chose, and it was this arrogance that seemed like it could easily be India's bugbear.

Even though India managed to sneak through, It was certainly Chanderpaul's day, an innings etched into the annals of great chases..and as I say this, something tells me that Chanderpaul and Lara will fade into the sunset of their careers with World cup being their biggest hurrah, that they could tell their grandchildren, as their pearl which took a long time coming.

Lack of time

I have been a little busy lately battling the common cold, some personal work and family issues. I did manage a post on my alternate mirror blog.I am posting the link of my travellogue Blog part 2 here. I will add more to it in the coming days, atleast 5 pictures a day starting from today on my Blogger Blog.

The last few days have been a lot of interospection on life so far and what I want to get out of life etc etc. I have a lot to share here in terms of thoughts and opinions, posts that I have missed out, will soon feature here.

This blog will be back to brimming with my views, starting from today (not this post...the next one :-) )


Livin La Vida Goa-Part 2

The Next day, I woke up at 4 30 in the morning, given the fact that the train was scheduled to arrive at Mangalore by 5 30 am. None of my friends wanted to be woken up at this unearthly hour. The first major station I saw early in the morning was Kasaragod, a small town in Kerala.The train stopped there for a few minues, and I got down and searched the platform for any vendor, who could sell me some hot tea/ coffee, but it wasn't to be.
I started till here and gave up as the images took a lot of time to load. Expect a detailed post on each day coming up.I have already typed the content, but since content without images would be bland, I am waiting for an apprpriate time to add the images once internet bandwith and my mood are in sync. I am right now in the Bangalore Railway station,working on some personal work, as I have a conference in a few hours on Sankey Road.
The whole travellogue should be up this week.


Indian Cricket _Venkatesh Prasad Vs Aamir Sohail

Indian Cricket

Watch the famous episode between Aamir Sohali and Venkatesh Prasad in 1996 World Cup Quarter Final, India vs Pak in Bangalore.


Livin La Vida Goa-Part-1

10-30 am 27th December- I get a call from my friend Anand, who's waiting at the central station, Chennai for 1 member of the gang to arrive, yes thats me..andI had to cut his call, as I was in a meeting, fully aware of the fact that, three kilometres from the place I work, a certain Mangalore West Coast express was all set to leave in 45 minutes. I quickly finished the meeting I was engrossed in at work, and sped to the station a good 25 minutes ahead of time, only to hear that the train was to leave half an hour later than scheduled.The surplus time was spent gazing the various platforms of Chennai Central and hogging in Saravana Bhavan.

Once the train started, we discovered that the 6 of us had been booked in two different sets of seats,3 in each set, though within the same coach.Unfortunately I had no glamorous woman between 18 and 25 in my coach, and I resigned to my fate of having to send the journey with 3 cronies and 2 potential terrorists. Out of these 5 people 1 was a 70 year old self proclaimed god fearing man, while his adjacent seat had a man wearing a white and white shirt and Lungi.He turned out to be a politician, a councilor of the Red hills area in Chennai.The other 3 people were his chamchas. A few minutes into the journey the 2 "potential terrorists" who did not posses a ticket, drove away the original inhabitants of the seats away with force,which was mutely watched by all passengers.Though I did raise my voice in support of the victims, the rowdie's voice seemed to overpower mine and mine was lost in the din of the noise between the harangued passengers, the hooligans and a shamed TTE.

If that was not enough the Councilor opened his suitcase and amidst a smelly set of clothes were a few bottles of liquor and heavily greased oil packets having chicken biriyani.These savage men went about openly having liquor as soon as the TTE passed and I had to bear the dirty smell, for well over an hour before the drunken stupor struck them and they fell asleep.

In their drunken state, before they lost consciousness, a eunuch entered our compartment and these 5 men, including the lecherous old man(the self proclaimed god fearing 70 year old), decided to extract his share of fun, for the tenner, he personally entered into the eunuch's blouse.He went about fondling various sensitive organs of the eunuch and the rest of the men also seemed to lay their hands on whatever they felt would titillate them. It was a like a porn movie with their clothes on.The eunuch went about teasing and entertaining her patriots before she decided that these 50 plus men, were not man enough. Our tour had an eventful start and left us shocked at the audacity of the politician and the old man.

From the Right-Clockwise - Thats the letch, Vinu Anand and arvind, sitting in rapt attention of what their future looks like
Before the old man, succumbed to the liquor, he also entertained us on the pretext of checking our palm and giving us pointers on astrology. He cracked some lewd jokes, that never looked befitting the image he had give us earlier, and the guys patiently listened as we had no one else in the compartment to speak to :-).

The 6 of us regrouped and started making fun of each other, especially the funniest college antics each of us did and topping the list was a discussion on one of our fellow companion, Sabarinath, who changed his name to Shabreee after spending an afternoon in London.Thankfully decent couple boarded the station at Vellore and they gave us company tell Palakkad, and we didnt have any more dirty episodes, barring a few minutes when the politician tried making a pass at the couple(the lady, more so ), in his last stages of drunken stupor.

The period from 6pm to 9 pm was the most enjoyable with the fresh evening breeze, cooling the warmth on a hot Chennai afternoon. This period was spent taking potshots at each others inane comedies while in College,after all it was supposed to be a small re union amidst friends.

December 27th seemed to be over in a flash, and as soon as we entered Kerala, I helped myself to a few banana snacks including chips and some local delicasies that is available at the wayside stations.

Sabari and I at Palakkad station.
The later part of the night was spent listening to music, and this particular song "Green -Day Bouleward of Broken Dreams" as I sat near the isolated window near the door, to reflect on what I wanted from this 6 day break from the normal routine.Though it was chill, I enjoyed opening the door of the compartment at night and feeling the chill gush of wind, even as I could see the train snaking along the bends and the curves under the moonlight, with my walkman providing the right musical ambience.

Thats me at the window
Expect more in Part-2 ( On day 2 the 28th of December-2006).


Insipid Life

Life for the moment is pretty hectic , insipid and not worth measuring. Expect a detailed post on my Goa travellogue soon. The Goa trip was a such a respite from work, but the short 4 night stay in Goa, was too short to explore North Goa properly.I managed to visit Arambol,Ashwem and Vagator beaches, and spent sometime in solitude on the moonlit beaches,with my walkman playing a few kishore da numbers.It was absolute bliss for the moments I sat there,on the rocks abutting the wet sands. In short Goa was like a dream that faded away in a wink.

Life looks hectic as whatever I plan to do invariably fails and the fast pace of life all off a sudden from the laidback lifestyle in Goa has had my body complaining of fatigue very easily.

Photos and Goa tour pics coming soon.


Saddam Hussein's Death-Video recording on Mobile Phone

Saddam's hanging seems to have been covered by a video.I dont know the extent to which this is true, but just passing it on to folks to share the video.

The embed code for LIVE LEAK doesnt seem to be working, but I guess it should work on a Wordpress Plugin.

embed src="http://www.liveleak.com/player.swf" width="450" height="370" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" flashvars="autostart=false&token=863ce7d4a3" scale="showall" name="index" />

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