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:: Saturday, November 09, 2002 ::

.....the road trip continued: Day 4: Chaos and Confusions

So here comes the 4th day, the last full day in Goa. It was a good day of learning how disordered and chaotic can an unplanned trip can become. Our agenda for the complete day: Watersports. For all of us, this was the major attraction of Goa, even more than the famous beaches. The previous day, we had gone to nearby Taj Holiday Village inquiring about it, only to be told to come again the next day and ask. In the meantime, we also had called up Barracuda Diving about what we can do tomorrow, and again did not get much details.

We called Taj in the next morning to find out that there weren't any interesting options. So the first thing, we simply headed to 'Cida de Goa' beach resort near Miramar, Panaji where Barracuda Diving was supposedly located. On asking, we were given some watersport options in the resort, like WindSurfing, speedboat and more. But Barracuda Diving had recently shifted to Marriott beach resort that was a 10 minute drive from there. So there, we go to Marriott and finally met people from the diving school. Our plan was to Snorkel and spend the day while understanding whatever we can about diving. But it so turned out that the boat that goes to diving site had left around 30 minutes back and the next schedule is 2 days later. We were stranded with nothing much to do for the day. It is too hot to get into a beach or something during mid-day. We then decided on whiling our time till evening and return to 'Cida de Goa' to learn some windsurfing there.

So, with lot of time to spend, we entered a nearby Barista and spent half an hour. From there, we went to Old Goa to visit the 17th Century built Church of St Francis of Assisi. Old goa is nearly 20 minutes drive from Panaji. All these times, we were talking how good an idea it was to take a car here. Without one, we would have been stuck to one or two places and could have moved around very little. The St. Francis Church also housed a museum and had some paintings from the Portugese days. Believe it or not it was the first time in life I was going to a Church! I was moved by the majesty of the place and the calmness that it evokes. Strangely, I felt the same good feel that I had felt under the stars when we were sitting the previous night on the Vagator beach. We lit candles and sat in the Church for sometime. I felt I could sit there silently and spend all the day. Visiting the Church was a good decision and that made the best of the day.

We returned to Panaji from there, finished our lunch and again went to Barista. Around 4pm, we returned to Cida de Goa to try windsurfing. It so turned out we had not done good home work again. They had no staff to teach you windsurfing, so all you could do is hire a surfboard and hit the sea if you are a pro. Same with snorkels too. So the remaining options were the not really pleasent ones - like parasailing, speed boat rides and the like. So just to minimize our disappoinement, we bought some boat rides and returned from there.

The only bright spot of the day was visiting Barracude Diving school. Karen from the school informed us about some promotional package where they introduce to diving gears and also give you a session in swimming pool(FYI: you have to begin in swimming pool even for a profession course). And one such session is scheduled in a 'Sun Village Resort' the next morning. So planning about that, we returned to the basecamp after dinner. We then went to Vagator beach(that was around 9pm I guess) with some mats and torch and decided to spend some time in the night there. The evening tides were rising and the sea was much more active than the previous day. We were there for an hour or so watching the tides and the stars. I think it is really nice to sit in a beach during the night than day, as long as you don't get into water. Nearly 30 minutes after we were in the beach, we noticed lot of crabs were coming out of their hide. Since they were small and stayed away from us, they were not a problem. But after an hour we saw the numbers growing and wherever you see, there were crabs crabs and just crabs. To me, it was nice to see so much life around even near a populated beach, but it was definitely not a good idea to stay there any longer. So we left around 10pm and hit the bed. We had one night and almost half day more in Goa.

to be continued.....

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