First day, however, was spent trying to sort logistics – Trev-Max and I cycled into Chaudi/Canacona – the nearest big town, in an effort to find an ATM with money and investigate forward travelling bus tickets. Neither of these missions worked out, but the bike ride was fun and not too strenuous: the ATM was closed (transpired it was a BH) and the travel agency couldn’t guarantee that my bicycle would go on a coach so no point in getting a ticket. We visited Palolem beach (which I’ve since discovered my son Seth visited on his trip to India all those years ago) and had a ‘half hot’ (sexy?) omelette sandwich from a beach stall which was very good. Back to Agonda by afternoon and it’s Trevor’s BIRTHDAY! So everyone met up next door at Gayle and Bogart’s for CAKE and to watch the X Factor final, which featured Saara Aalto from Finland – who had a cousin who stayed in Agonda – hence the fandom. She didn’t win, but everyone cheered her on and it was a nail biting, close finish. That evening the birthday celebrations continued with a supper cooked by Dale and Darryl (Bogart’s parents)– I feel very privileged to be included at the party (and provided some booze as my contribution). Life is good.
Next day, I manage to lose Trevor (no, I don’t know how) and took off to cycle back to Chaudi and succeeded in getting some money (phew). The problems with access to cash continued for the entirey of my stay in India – what a nightmare for those people just coming for a fortnight’s holiday – having to spend hours queueing at an ATM isn’t most people’s idea of fun. I also managed to post the last of the Christmas presents I’ve been carrying around with me. The Post Office guy didn’t ask me to put my address on the back, or the contents, or to fill in a form not even once, let alone in triplicate - I double checked that he didn’t need any of these things – but, despite reassurance, I still leave the Post Office feeling slightly anxious about their arrival. The guy did stick a HUGE amount of stamps all over the packages though. (I’ve since heard that most have arrived so I’m hoping that means they ALL arrived).
I returned to the travel agents – but they were still useless and hadn’t found out anything. On the way back to Agonda I saw a sign on a blackboard saying ‘Falafel’ so stopped to have some for lunch. They tasted nothing like falafel and more like the Indian burger mix I’d been having for breakfast - but served with hummus, so that was tasty.
I Found Trevor at home, much later in the afternoon – laid up with a cold, coughing and sneezing. He’d had grand plans to go fishing under the full moon - this is an auspicious time to catch the big one, apparently – but he didn’t go as he felt too unwell.
Thursday 14th December, and Trevor is still clogged up with cold and in need of paracetamol.
I trot off to an excellent yoga session with Dale (who is a yoga teacher), Pauline and Gail (the mother of the twins – and still lithe and slim and youthful). I appreciate the stretching and my left side feels enormously better. Porridge for breakfast following this – yum.
I try and upload some photographs but the wifi is (as usual in India) painfully slow and awful.
The sky remained heavy all day, weighing us down under a muggy blanket – until the evening – when it splattered a few raindrops. Not many!
The week wound on with a routine developing of long lazy days: some yoga with Dale followed by breakfast (with real coffee); swimming; reading; blogging; socialising; a beer or two; not necessarily in that order.
The sunsets were amazing. I also queued at ATMs; ate in and ate out. Completed very few daily paintings and got very little blogging done.
was a holiday indeed. I loved being part of the Canadian/Brit/Goan community and Trevor looked after me royally (even whilst sneezing). He mended my spindles and made a bamboo sheath to protect them (didn’t work, but it was a good try). Knitting was recommenced. Croatian square nearly complete.
Time to move on. Time to meet Eric (ANOTHER neighbour) in Bangalore for a curry!