It’s during college days that most beings go explore the world and by the time they graduate they would have probably seen a handful of mainstream areas with a few small gems thrown in here and there. I am a person who craves minimum attention but at the same time strives to be unique, which is indeed a hard task. But I did manage to find a group that helped me be in the minority and not go for any trips like most of the people in my class, until this year. We went to the small state known for babes and cheap booze. If you haven’t figured out the place yet then I think I rather not tell you.
Contrary to my expectations, this was one of the most hectic and frustrating moments I have been through recently. It took us almost a week to just come up with a small list of areas to consider. Aside from the fact that most of the members of my group weren’t willing to go beyond any action other than just typing out a few destinations and rejecting others. I shall leave the cribbing out from now on.
AirBnB. If any of you 6 readers is planning to go to the same destination I highly suggest you go through AirBnB. My partner in crime managed to find a 3BHK apartment with a functional kitchen for a very good price. How cheap? It came down to around 1000 Rs for 3 days when the cost was split between us. This was the first experience for me with AirBnB and it was lovely. And since it was prepaid, that was one less thing to worry about. If AirBnB isn’t an option then I would suggest Oyo Rooms as I could find some really good listings there too. We decided to go by bus because it’s easily accessible than the railway station. If money is a factor then don’t go to Red Bus, you should opt for Goa Kadamba. It’s the state transport of Goa. Unfortunately, they don’t have sleepers or semi sleepers.
One thing we didn’t take care of was travel in Goa, due to the assumption that there would be plenty of options available so there was no need to be concerned about it.
While I was trying not to be excited about the trip due to my paranoia about how things could go haywire, the others couldn’t help it. Their excitement did sweep into my head when there were just a few days left.
Finally, the day had come, which also meant that I had to pack my bag three hours before departure time, performing that action other than that particular time period seems like blasphemy to me. I managed to reach the bus stand quite early, which did appear to be a shocker to everyone including me.
A very impressive thing I came across was the Uber driver’s income. Among all my friends I was the only one who came to the bus stand alone and I got an Innova through Uber, which wasn’t intentional. After indulging in a conversation with him, he revealed to me that he earns around 2 lakhs per month through Uber and gets around 5 hours of rest in the afternoon as he takes a long nap. It did seem quite funny when the majority of us are studying so much to end up with a starting salary of 18-20K per month.
As we were waiting for the rest of the party and our bus, I happened to see a Scania bus. It looked a million times better compared to others, so much that I just wanted to go in it to wherever it was headed. While my friends were buying so much of chips / junk that they could start a small bakery in the bus itself, I was just appreciating this beautiful bus.
The bus ride till our destination could be described as an odd combination of embarrassment and fun. I am sure the other passengers weren’t so thrilled to have us with them. The excitement and inexperience were announced to the whole crowd by some of us in the least subtle way possible.
We managed to reach our stop without any hiccups. We managed to reach the apartment easily, I had expected for us to get lost. The apartment was amazing. For the amount we paid, it was worth so much more. I am sure that everyone who was with me would use AirBnB without a second thought. It was almost noon when we decided that we would go to Baga and hopefully acquire scooters. Bad idea. Alright, I won’t call it a bad idea, it was a stupid idea to think that it would be an easy task; there were plenty of people who were willing to give us vehicles and all they were asking were 3X the price.
As vehicles weren’t an option for the day, our plan was quite clear, in fact it’s not much of a plan just that our options were quite limited. We were stuck there till the evening, which meant that all we could do was walk around and explore. I also learnt that Anjuna beach isn’t 2 km from Baga and its better not to attempt to climb a random hill at a secluded area hoping for a beach to be on the other side. Our afternoon and evening were spent just trying to fulfill the quest of finding a path which leads to Anjuna beach. Which obviously was an utter waste of time, after we realized we decided to just call it a day and go home and get drunk. That’s exactly what we did. The best beer to have there as far as I can tell is King’s Beer.
After a long night of fun and games and beer, I had more hopes for the next day. And it turned out to be right, as we managed to get vehicles and we were ready to actually see something in this place. I saw a fort or whatever remained of it, it was the first time in my life that I am seeing a fort; it was called Chapora Fort. I would definitely recommend this place to anyone who is interested in sightseeing. Following that, we had a nice lunch which included yummy shark fish fry. Now it was time for us to get lost because one person just decided to take a wrong turn for mysterious reasons defined by only his logic. Fast forwarding the confusion – we reached Vagator beach. This is by far my most favorite beach; best one I have seen in my life till date. This beauty has black sand and a smaller crowd compared to the others. I wanted to be consumed by the sand slowly as the cold waves hit my legs. As it got darker the crowd grew even lesser and we had to go to the mainstream Baga, I was outnumbered in this case when it was my turn to voice the opinion. Before we could go to the beach and have dinner, we decided to finish the most important chore – BUY MORE BOOZE. It wasn’t so easy to choose one restaurant as such because almost every place looked alike and offered a similar menu. The upside being that I had my first candlelight dinner and liqueur. We returned to the apartment after loitering around and buying these glow stick bands which might be the second best thing I bought from Goa. I was awake till 6 AM all due to the awesome beer and engaging conversations.
Day 3 / Dull Day
In short – We didn’t do anything at all. Even though I slept at 6, I woke up at 9. While the majority woke up after 11. The only highlight would be playing cards with noobs. We had lunch by 4 or that’s when most would get ready; rushed back home somehow and the usual race against time in between which I managed to procure a bottle of liqueur to take back. Return journey seemed a bit exhausting and uncomfortable, I am glad I was adamant on a Volvo, otherwise, I am not sure how many potholes and turns my body could handle. Special mention to the hotel where the bus stopped for dinner for being one of the worst places I have visited in times of desperation.
I am a person who tries to learn from past mistakes; the important word being try. Some planning would have made this much better for me, actually, it would have been better if I could hammer down the plans I created into my friends. Some other pointers would be
* Uber drivers are still making a huge profit.
* Don’t make coffee with milk powder.
* Don’t let your friend keep uneaten cooked noodles on the nightstand for a day or more.
* Question everything your friend does if he is high, the probability of his / her actions having no logic and dire consequences is extremely high.
* There is something called having too much of beer
* Air Conditioners are one of the best inventions by humans, maybe near the wheel.
* Bluff is a boring card game.
This post / poor attempt to recall my experience in Goa was made over the course of a month with varying moods which might be reflected in different lines. Life is bleak.