There is something in the air in Goa that speaks of holidays...of relaxation and of letting down your hair. The golden beaches of north Goa, the white sands of South Goa...the shacks that dot the beaches, the colourful sun umbrellas...the white bodies that lie here desperately seeking to tan themselves under the Indian sun, the gallons of beer that are consumed daily here.
I have stayed any which way in Goa. I have lived on a shack in the beaches at Baga for a mere Rs 30 a day, mingling with the scruffy long-haired hippie in waist coat and pyjamas and his companion wearing a single cotton lungi tied sarong style. For 100 times the price I have stayed at Majorda Resorts, filled with aging international tourists who prefer to sun themselves by the swimming pool in the Hotel, than be tossed by the waves.
Wherever I have been, be it hoofing from beach to beach, a carefree motorcycle ride away, a dilapidated bus that takes the entire day to travel 100 kms or in the relative comfort of the taxis that ply, Goa has the unique distinction of being able to be enjoyed, no matter who you are or where you are at.
There is about Goa a feeling of freedom...the freedom to rediscover the lost you in the timelessness of waiting and watching the setting sun, sipping a sunset cocktail, while waiting for a spicy Goan crab masala or a grilled salmon.
There is about Goa a feeling of freedom...the freedom to rediscover the lost you in the timelessness of waiting and watching the setting sun, sipping a sunset cocktail, while waiting for a spicy Goan crab masala or a grilled salmon. There is the freedom of walking barefeet on the sands, of wearing shorts for dinner, of leaving the world and its cares behind.
Goa exudes a tolerance and acceptance that comes with the many languages and different cultures that rub shoulders as they pass through it's portals. There is a sense of history and antiquity in the old churches and forts and the delightful Portuguese architecture. The unhurried pace of living, the tradition of afternoon siestas, the friendly simplicity of the Goan culture is able to embrace all while retaining it's own unique identity.
Finally, Goa is a flood of memories, of associations and of images. Long after I have returned to other shores, I can taste the salt on my lips, feel the sand between my toes, smell the Goan spices, hear the waves as they crash, see the footprints left behind and know the joy of living. The sounds of young voices, the whisper of the wind, waves that froth as they collapse at your feet, nights under the stars. Crumbling sandcastles and the dreams that remain...seashells that carry the sound of the ocean...the glorious colours of light as the sun sets into the sea...the warmth of waters that envelop you...horizons that stretch forever.
Come to Goa...and get in touch with yourself again.