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A Goa Story

Goa to me is now permanently linked to a certain soap that my company makes thanks to spending time on a shop floor. And also Indian uncles jumping into water at Calingute beach in their underwear. But I also remember the greenery and the beauty I used to savor every morning on the way to my workplace. Yes I have worked in Goa. In a factory no less.
So when AB announced the only way to ring in my 30 was to party in India’s party capital,I decided to make the best of the situation by getting started on my excel. Yes, I make holiday excels with itinerary, cost, must dos for all holidays and making the excel is one of the most exciting things I do to build up any vacation in my mind. Yes am an MBA thank you very much.
My Goa trip was very different from the past (and yet it was the cliche-d partaay trip)  and am sharing the things that made this an awesome trip to bid goodbye to my twenties.

1. Peak Holiday Season in Goa = Give me all your monies

So booking airfare and hotel between Christmas and NYE in the second week of December, not such a great idea. SKYHIGH is where the prices where if the hotel wasn’t fully occupied already. At one point we were looking at staying at the beach for 4 days or file for bankruptcy. This is kill time for the tourism business. That Activa you zipped around in for 200 bucks during monsoons, be ready to shell out a grand for it now.

2. Sunburn

Actually the VIP passes to Sunburn – arguably India’s only international level music festival is the one that really bought me in. And I have to say it was everything and more. There was music, food, rides and people. This year they had Afrojack, Axwell and Markus Schulz headlining but I also loved Arnej ,Shermanalogy and Shaan. The mega huge mainstage, lights and pyrotechnics was fabulous.

Morjim Sunset3. Morjim and Aswem

After spending the first evening in Baga, we headed north. The moment we crossed Chapora, we met a Russian overdose. Many restaurants in fact had only Russian signage! But The beaches were beautiful and also much source for eye candy.

4. La Plage

Took some effort to find this Aswem based French restaurant but it was worth the trouble. Beautiful beach setting and some of the best food I had in years. So much so we returned the next day, driving all the way from Candolim. We had grilled mussels, beetroot and mango carpaccio, ravioli and everything was superb. We tried some 4 items from the dessert menu and all of them were mouth watering. We expected to run a huge tab but I found it quite reasonable compared to what many places south were charging. Only word of advice- pre book, the place fills up fast.

5. Hike up the Chapora Fort

I climbed the slippery terrain in a pair of chappals to be greeted with a beautiful sunset over Vagator. Worth the risk of sliding all the way to the bottom!

6. Mum’s Kitchen, Miramar

Food in GoaI had read that this was one of the best places to try authentic Goan cuisine, so off we zipped to Panjim. Its here I learnt Goan food is spicy, spicy, spicy and cocunut laden-much like Kerala. AB had a fish which he couldnt stop raving about. Again the place filled up in a jiffy and we were lucky to have landed early without any bookings and in finding a seat.

7. Thalassa

A Greek restaurant at the edge of a cliff in Vagator overlooking the beach. The location is worth the visit, but the food wasn’t really that great for the money they charged. Add to it chaos due to overbooking and dishes taking more than an hour to get ready. Maybe they were having an off day. The baklava was quite good though.

8. Curlies

A landmark at Baga beach their egg poi sandwich and milkshakes really hit the spot at 1AM. After 6 hours of EDM I no longer had the energy to dance the night away but things would have been different 5 years ago 🙂

Eat. Sleep. Party. Repeat.

Twenties now am done with you!

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2013 in travel

 

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BLT Diaries: Aik aikai,life fulai!

There is a long clean stretch of road outside my window. Undulating, potholes-free it curves away to open into the road running along Miramar beach. Early morning people in jogging tracks and with their dogs dot the road. The weather has when not raining just the right amount of chill. The more adventurous even run on the beach sand.

I force open the eyes with fingers pulling the eyelid in opposite direction till the cornea and like can see the room. Brush. Shift to my so called jogging tracks(they are the only ones whose elastic still holds) and sports shoes (which by any stretch of imagination are not comfortable for any sporting activity), plonk them headphones(flinched from them Kingfisher airlines) and began my swift walk. Group of senior citizens overtake me in a bit and look back with the ‘look-what-McD-has-done-to-them’ stare.We are just warming up I tell myself and break into a jog. Then I catch speed. I begin to run. Faster.Faster.The wind rushes past my ears. The heart hammers wildly. The scenary flits past the corner of the eye. I run.And run.Till the heart seems about to burst. I look back at the distance covered.

Am standing 100m from where I started. oh well!

Every day I have a 45min drive from the guest house to the factory. The car drives along the Miramar beach, the Mandovi river and makes it way to Kundaim which is a hilly region. The landscape outside changes rapidly from sea to riverside to hills. As the factory nears we leave embark on climbing up mountain slope. I feel like rolling down the windows, playing loud jhintak Bollywood music and stop at every curiosity and click pictures. I feel like being a silly schoolgirl on holiday with friends.

The drive to factory is in a car pool with other managers of the factory. In silence.

I tell the manager I plan to work late. 2 minutes later he walks in on me ‘Oh so you sitting back to social network?’ I of course had maximised my IE page in secure comfort that he has left office after closing all my excels. Damn them glass walls!

PS: Title roughly means-suno suno,life khilao as in flowering and not food! What am I explaining?Just google it!

This BTW is view from where I sit at work!blame 2 mgpxl phone-camera for clarity issues.

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2008 in BLT, life, Uncategorized

 

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BLT Diary: So lately,in case you have been wondering…

So much water had flown down the Periyar since I last posted. Quick updation to follow. So as you sit in your cubicle,using a proxy server to bypass company firewall and spend hours the poor client is billing you to read this I am lying in a hammock on a pristine Goan beach sipping my Litchini with a nice book lying face down on my paunch. Yes this is also called rubbing it in. Its also called I wish my company let me do all this. Reality is I am in Goa,watching backpackers in bermudas and chappals while I lug my 10kgs outdated laptop and work schedules and diaries, watching the beauty bar of the filmstars being manufactured and long my heart out to be a trashy backpacker on tour.

So lately,here is what we did…

I struggled,pushed, and somehow by sheer miracle of foolishly smiling at shopkeepers managed the sales target given to me. The boss smiled finally when I did give him my final presentation. You have done very well… excellent…he said as he smilingly filled average in all columns of my appraisal sheets. (Yes, of course, excellently average)

So we proceeded to our next destination-Chennai. But not before some drama. The last lunch at branch office didnt take to my stomach with the same vigour fat cells all over the world are taking to my hips. So it quickly decided to make an exit through the orifice it entered from. Not satisfied it took along the breakfast and everything else available in the stomach. This over a period of 12 hours at night.

The next day was on a flight to Chennai. Never in my life did I imagine I would be looking forward to a visit to Chennai. But I was. In fact a visit to anything spelling m-e-t-r-o would have had me jump in hoops. The Chennai stint was brief and uneventful. All back office work is taken care there. So learnt some processes, thanked God I wasnt working in a BPO, drank a lot of south indian coffee and returned home to Jaya TV. That was because my hotel room showed only Jaya, Kiran, KTV, Sun, Surya,Kairali,Asianet..Yes dearies I went one whole week without watching 20 girls-2 guys whoring themselves in the name of Reality Tv!

Chennai was also fun because there were 3 other BLTs in Chennai and we even drove down to Pondicherry one weekend. It was a total dampner because the sea side kind of melts you when you are out mid noon. However we stopped by some place called Tiger Hills on the way back (roughly 40kms from Chennai) and it was superb! It had a park with tiger shaped carvings and we climbed on them and a really clean beach. of course yours truly went into eplileptic fits of joy on seeing waves and did things she later regretted. Sitting down on the shore with waves washing over you being one (Why? 1. sand sand everywhere, and I mean everywhere 2. Know how irritating salty water up your nose cab be) But overall 5/5 rating to Tiger Hills.

From there we landed at the new sparkling Bengaluru airport. Again not without some drama. The cab sent to pick me up from hotel at 6 in the morning went to the airport instead. With an hour to flight I was still standing in hotel lobby chewing my nail and slowly the flesh of the finger away. After some Formula 1 racing by cabbie we were in. Running full speed ahead with trolley glanced at the notice board to see if flight has already taken off to find it delayed. Blood pressure hovering at the ceiling went to basement in flat 5 seconds.

Over the weekend met friends and went to MGRoad(as if we had any option!).

Shopaholic seeing mall after 8 weeks + happiness sale at Bangalore Central = salary account hurtling towards bankruptcy.

It also helped that my friend(lets call him CC) was most helpful in decision making.

Me: A or B. I cant decide..

CC: Buy both na..

Me: okay, but only because you forced me!

Guilt dumped on third party I proceeded to empty my wallet. So now we have even more luggage of things I will probably never use to lug around. As the BF says I dont know whats in those suitcases considering you only wear these 3-4 dresses. How to explain that the multiple stomachs can only hide in sack like kurtas and not in the second skin like tees am lugging around in the hope of someday squeezing into( you know after my very own Kareena Kapoor like makeover. Oh btw, her trainer is now working on reducing Rani Mukherjee to 45kgs. Now if that happens, I will sell a kidney and hire her. I digress..I digress..)

Also saw ‘Jaane tu…’ after expectations had been built sky high. Reality came crashing down as we watched the shokh sabha of the billi in stunned incredulity. Maybe I am really getting old and this is what they call ‘the generation gap’. But I also wanted to pull Imrans cheek and hang out with him. It was a little back-to-being-14 kinda feeling.

Ohh ohh and also at the new airport at Devanhalli (only some 30kms from mankind) there is no screening of baggage. Why? Also two life threatening scissors were recovered from my hand luggage. (Kept there to cut the irritating seals in suitcase zippers that are painful to remove with hand) Afraid I may cut off any airhostess or co-passenger hair with those tiny pairs they were confiscated. Saw a 50% sale at FCUK and Tommy H stores. Only the work involved in lugging the 10kg hand luggage kept me in my seat.

Landed at Vasco and traveled by an absolutely lovely road to Panjim where am currently housed. 6 weeks from now I will travel the same way out of Goa. I only hope I would have done the hammock-litchini-book bit by then!

Edited to add : Atlee on what rival FMCG company is making him do here.

 
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Posted by on July 21, 2008 in BLT, life, Uncategorized

 

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