Goa Vacance – 3

Hi, I’m Mr.DM, D’s other half. I was greatly excited when my wife pitched in with this idea of me contributing here specially about Goa. So I got started from that moment on & hope you enjoy yet another one of our “stories” about Goa!

DATE: 21-FEB-2015
TIME: 1400 HRS

D: We were planning for the Goa trip this time last year
Dee: Well, we could go this year too
D: DM, what say?
DM: Hmmmm…OK.
D: But this time, not in a car.
Dee: Hahahaha
DM: Ya…Not again
Dee: I heard there are cheap air tickets on offer.
D: Let’s go then!!!
DM: Roger that
Dee: Over and out

…And that’s how another Goa trip and yet another very special chunk of something called life came into existence. Tickets were booked, resort was booked, leaves applied, approved and we were all set for yet another wonderful holiday in Goa by the end of March. This time, unlike the rest of the times we were ready well over a month in advance. D, Dee and DM all set and waiting for that amazing day to arrive. From then on, we had 99% of our brains used up by one thought…the idea of a holiday in Goa.
However, what’s life without some drama 🙂 … Much had changed by the first week of March, both professionally and personally. We were staring at a possible expedited relocation from Bangalore into one of possible 3 continents, with the relocation date somewhere in the first week of April. We had to make a choice and the options were hard to choose from and to add to that there was a heap load of work coming our way in terms of packing, paper work, etc. D would ask me this once every morning, afternoon and night – “DM, with all this going on, you think we should cancel the Goa trip? How will we wrap everything up if we go on a vacation?”. I kept telling her every time – “I think we will be able to manage, let’s wait and watch”, though being equally or more anxious about the situation. Goa 2015, what seemed like a sure shot on 21st of February, was turning into a highly likely dissolution.

Come 18th of March, we were still undecided, with less than 20 days to pack up the entire house and move to another continent. Goa 2015 was probably not meant to be. But wait, what the heck…. It’s GOA. In the wise words of Madam D, “We have a 2/3 probability of moving to a country with cold weather. Where are we going to get sunny beaches and a ride on the bike with the wonderful breeze to enjoy… and it’s GOA”. So, Goa 2015 was indeed a trip meant to be and a very special one at it.

We landed at the same resort we were last time around – Riva beach resort and spa, sipping some wonderful tropical flavored drink in the pool, overlooking the beach….Heaven.
Dee by now had developed a special liking for swimming. He was in fact addicted to it, so much so that day or night did not matter.IMG_6611D by then had done a lot of thinking about the relocation and had narrowed down her choices of relocation from 3 to 2. And she was ok with either one of them and frankly did not care which one of the two it was going to be. With the weight of that decision making off her back, she was enjoying every bit of it in what I would like to call “A colony of Heaven” – Goa. I on the other hand, though was enjoying, used the tranquil, heavenly environment to ponder over various pros and cons of the choices I had.
In Goa, there are these cool jeeps (warning: they appear cool, but are super uncomfortable for passengers sitting at the back) you can rent for cheap/decent rate depending on your bargaining skills. We also rented one such jeep to get around. We would go to this vegetarian restaurant called Krishna Bhavan in Calangute and feast on Sabudana Khichdi each morning – A must try.
IMG_20150321_102720… And in the evenings, we would sit in these cool gazebos at the resort with some fries, manchurians, and sandwiches and have long talks as the sun set across the ocean, making it a pretty spectacular experience.
IMG_6940It was already Sunday, the dreaded day where we were scheduled to head back to Bangalore. It was almost time I made the final decision about our relocation as well. I had decided to stay on with my current employer and relocate to this wonderful country, Canada (one of the 3 choices). What this also meant was that since I had decided to stay on with my employer of last 10 years, I had the liberty to buy a week or two of time to begin the relocation formalities. And what that meant was there was a possibility of Goa 2015 not coming to an end on Sunday and the party continuing for a few more days. Made a couple of calls at work and yes, more good times were to come. Sadly for Dee, it was time to head back to Bangalore. After one last Sabudana Khichdi meal for the trip for Dee, with a very heavy heart, D and me dropped Dee off at the airport.

Knowing fully well that we would be missing Goa thoroughly, D and me decided to enjoy every bit of our extended stay in Goa. We went on dinner dates to Taj, did some shopping, again enjoyed scrumptious breakfast buffet at Taj. We wanted to imbibe every bit of Goa.

Goa 3
Goa 31

We then rented a bike for the rest of the trip. We rode around the narrow lanes of North Goa jeweled with coconut plantation, Old Portuguese styled houses and beaches. Calangute – a small, more of a commercial town in North Goa with lots of shops, restaurants, spas, coffee shops used to be a regular stop on our route. We would stop there to buy a cup of ice cold coffee or a fake designer watch or to grab a bite.

Now, about the resort we stayed in – Riva Beach Resort was a and probably continues till date to be a good value for money resort in North Goa with access to the beach and back waters and the wonderful gazebos that I made a mention of above. The resort itself is built on a hill which leads up to the beach. You can catch a glimpse of the sunset over the beach right from the room or any of the gazebos or even the pool.

Those talks with D and Dee at the gazebo, those moments spent laughing, and those nice little brother-sister fights between Dee and D, the strolls along the beach or along the lush green paths of the resort are amongst the best moments of my life. I was sure that I had made the best decision for us and Goa 2015 seemed like a promise, a promise from God of the good times ahead.

BADAMI & AIHOLE…a stint with history & heritage

The cave temples of Badami, in the Bagalkot district of Karnataka, India, boast of the architecture of the Chalukya Dynasty in the 6th century.Carved out of hill cliffs hued with the rouge of sandstone they are home to numerous, intricate carvings of the many avatars of Lord Vishnu & Lord Shiva. If you pick a day when the crowds are scant (weekdays or maybe when the kids are slogging it out with exams in February & March!), the tranquility of River Agastya, the magnanimity of the cave temples, and the pleasant breeze that cruises through at the top of the hillock take you back to an era gone by, an era of grandeur, ancient culture & royalty. Continue reading “BADAMI & AIHOLE…a stint with history & heritage”