Monday, January 01, 2007

Goa -- I

The first exciting episode of a four day trip to Goa undertaken by thirteen people not long ago

Be warned. This is a lengthy narrative and has, therefore, been split into two or three episodes. Don't read it unless you want to or have to. I can't imagine a circumstance where you'd have to.

It's not until you get to work that you begin to realize the worth of a good holiday. Weekends suddenly mean a stunning lot more than they did in college. There, you could take the day off any day you wanted. Here, they throw you out if you do. Or atleast, look down upon you subtly and judge you. Anyway, when Christmas did arrive this year as it did, on a Monday, there were reasons to be overjoyed. We got overjoyed over a month ago and booked tickets to...Goa! Yes, the magical land of fun, frolic and fenny. Bangalore to Londa junction by train and thereon to Panaji by bus. Simple plan. Things don't always work out according to plan.

On the evening we were to leave for Goa(the 22nd of December, 2006), there was traffic. Everywhere, lots of people seemed in a tremendous hurry to go nowhere. They would all drive their vehicles into the thick of traffic and stop. Signals were of no use, of course. Traffic policemen were busy discussing the correctness of the death sentence handed to Saddam Hussein(as of this writing, he is dead). So, we had to get out from our autos and walk to the railway station(in my case, run with a suitcase in my hand and a bad bag slung over my shoulder. Yes, a suitcase. My father gently suggested I take that, if you call "You stupid maniac, take this thing along!" a gentle suggestion.) to catch the train. We(Arvind, Sandeep, KD, Swaroop, Harish, Naveen, Nivedita, Rakesh BV Dhanya, KK, Sneha and I) made it just in time and the bloody train left.

Of course, on a train or a bus, Sandeep can't sleep. I wonder how he manages to sleep even at home, being that the earth is moving along rapidly. So we all stayed up talking about nothing of paramount importance in the grand scale of things. Then, a lady sleeping nearby could take no more.
"Hey mister," she said. We were puzzled, for no one had proffered us such respect before.
"You have no plans of sleeping? This is a train. You haven't come here for a picnic."
KK responded, "Er, we're going to Goa. I thought that was a picnic spot, surely?" and laughed at his own witty repartee. Not many others did, and we all decided to get some(sleep) ourselves.

Of course, when you have a fat man snoring like a foghorn somewhere near you, you can't but record it in your phone, can you? We did and it is a wonderful recording. Like a gentle giant, the man snored. Like a gale, wind rushed into his cavernous nostrils as he drew breath. With equal force, it rushed out as he exhaled. It was a remarkable feat and we(Subba, Rakesh, KK and I) were privileged to be witness to it.

Prior to this, we met with two individuals who would later join us for Goan adventures. One Vishnu Ram and one Rakshith, classmates and comrades-in-arms of Sandeep and Naveen in many of their alcoholic misadventures. Yeah, just like that, they joined us. Very guy thing.

OK, now we have the dramatis personae in place. We have a great location, Goa, in place too. Let's go.

December 23rd, Saturday:-

We arrived at Londa junction at about 8 in the morning. A rigorous three-and-a-half hour journey later, we arrived at Madgaon. This town has an ISO9002 certified station and the world's only Skybus test track. From Madgaon, one may proceed to Panaji by a KTC(Kadamba Transport Corporation) bus.

We came to Panaji late in the afternoon, nigh on evening. The hotel we were to stay in was called Hotel Check-Inn. What diseased mind conjured up this name, I don't know. But I appreciate it. Thirteen people, three rather small rooms. It would be a challenge, thought we. It was.

At this juncture, let me put before you a statement to the effect that I had read when we were in Bangalore, on Subba's phone, a message from one Aneesh P Tarun to the effect that one should not, at any cost, miss the Saturday night bazaar near Anjuna beach. I had commented to Subba(Swaroop) too that we should go there when we got to Goa. OK, now let's get on with the narrative.

How do you divide thirteen people into three room? By throwing one of them out of yours, right? Exactly what Nivedita did.
"You can't stay here, ok? There are already four people here, me, Arvind, KD and Sneha, and five people using my bathroom will be...I don't know."
I silently heaved my baggage to the neighbouring room.

After lunch, we headed to Miramar beach. Then, spending a little time there, we had two plans of action before us. Get drunk(after purchasing liquor on the way) or go to the Saturday night bazaar near Anjuna beach. I was torn. I wanted to get drunk and go to the bazaar. But seeing that I wouldn't much appreciate the latter in a state of inebriation where standing up would be an exercise, I decided not to pursue that course of action too far. I said I'd go to the bazaar. The motley crew thus split into two factions.

Rakesh BV Dhanya asked an old man outside a shop which was shutting down where the head post office was. Before you wonder at our postal curiousities, it was because someone had told us we could rent cars near that place. The man launched into a lengthy, albeit helpful, narrative which involved people dying in painful bike accidents, Bangalore being home to terror attacks, the Goan police catching everyone who was not wearing a helmet, animals which were too smart for their species, babies which just showed off and were not really that cute and the location of the place which rented out cars. Thanking him, the four or five of us who had asked him that fateful question split up again into two factions. One would go and rent cars. The other(invariably involving me) was assigned the incredibly stupid task of escorting Sneha back to the hotel wherefrom she would proceed to her aunt's house. Yes, Rakesh and I were the lucky two who got to perform that most-challenging-on-the-mental-faculties chore. Cursing, we went about it while Arvind, Nivedita, KD and Swaroop went to the car rental place.

That was when the troubles began.

10 comments:

Sandeep said...

Oooh! What happens next? What happens next??

Rakesh said...

trouble?????..... catastrophe would be appropriate.

tangled said...

Wait, wait, wait... KD and Sneha?
nooooooooo

vijay_your_junior said...

Aha!
You finally managed to get to Goa!
Super! :-)
[random question]The car rental service you talking about , was it Joey's ?
Waiting for part-2 and 3 ...
These damned exams !

Harish said...

I bet this will take up to 6 or 7 posts to complete. Enantya?

Shalabh said...

yay! post the rest asap.
btw when did you start drinking ?or it's just a desire ?

nivedita said...

You did not 'silently heave your baggage to the neighbouring room'.

tangled said...

I want to know too!
What happens next? What happens next??
And can I please get a copy of that recording? okthankyou.

Arjun Sharma said...

[Sandeep]He he...

[Rakesh]Catastrophe-na? OK.

[Tharunya]What, you know them?

[Vijay]I don't know. I'll ask and tell you.

[Harish]I think so, man. Let's see.

[Shalabh]On September 9th, 2006.

[Nivedita]You didn't see me throw a tantrum, did you?

[Tharunya]OK, you can get it.

david booth said...

hello!!!

very nice & informative blog you have provided to us, i am surely gonna bookmark this blog & will save all this information for my next goa trip. anyways thanks a lot for sharing & would love too see few pictures of goa in this blog. keep it up. Read More

thanks again
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