Leaving Goa (again!)

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February 9th 2008
Published: February 9th 2008
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Having fun in GoaHaving fun in GoaHaving fun in Goa

Looks like I amnot the only one enjoying Goa!
One more little story before I leave Goa.... Yesterday, I had to go to Penjim to cancel one of my train tickets. It was a great day. I really like Penjim, so green and much quieter and cleaner than many other cities around. And really good food. Iain had to mail some books back home. Mailing books is cheap from India, but you have to package them in white cloth. So we went to a kind of tailor shop. Older man, very friendly. He was not in a rush and it was fascinating. This shop also had a photocopier, which I needed. I don't know how long we were in the shop, but it was one of those great indian experience. The old man gave me a Lonely Planet about INdia and asked me to read a paragraph that talked about some temple where they celebrate a festival in January, something related to the sun. He told me this is the only festival that has something to do with the sun. All the other ones have to do with the moon... It was a temple in Bangalore, not at all in Goa. So I was sort of waiting to see why

The temple close to the house
he was telling me that, but there was nothing else about it. Just something he wanted to share. He also told me about my toe ring, saying it was only for married women in India, he told me where to get a free map of Rajasthan, next to the church... I said "the white church?" He gently smiled and said that all churches are white.... Oupsi! And you should have seen how he was gently making the photocopies, with this old Xerox machine, taking care of this as if my book was some really old archive, ah! I really nice old Indian. It was fun.

Canceling my train ticket was fun too. I had to wait for over an hour, but I made friends at the ticket office because I seemed to be the only one with the "Trains at a glance" book. That is the book you need to figure out which train goes where and when. So when I pulled it out, there was a lot of interest around! I was amazed how nice the clerk was, since he must be a bit bored doing the same thing all day, but he was very nice. I love

some houses around here
their way of saying "no problem" for everything.

In the evening we had a little get together with the yoga bunch, because many of us were leaving. We had an amazing meal again with huge desserts. I didn't need to eat much today after that. I enjoyed the evening, talking to people from England, Belgium, Austria, Germany, US, MExico, Equador, etc. Unfortunately I had to wear my jacket for the first time yesterday. We have record cold weather, 14 degrees in some places in Goa, but I hear it is 45 and 50 below in the Yukon so I guess I will not complain too much. It made me laugh this morning to wake up at 20 degrees and think it is cold... It would be a great summer day in the Yukon.

Today I had to go to Pernem to cancel my other train ticket. So it was another drive north, but lovely as usual. I will find out tomorrow if I get a seat or if it will be a long night seating on the floor or in the overcrowded unreserved coach. Could be an adventure! We had coffee and chai in a little hotel over
The yoga shalaThe yoga shalaThe yoga shala

Where we sweat and stretch
there. I was wearing my salwar kameez but didn't fool the guy, I had to pay white skin price!!! Still, chai was good.

In the afternoon Iain and I were invited to visit a resort close to where we live. It costs 300 Euros per night to stay there, so it is... well.... amazing. Lovely, peaceful, quiet. Another world within India. Yes, big contrasts. It was something to see. I could adapt to a place like that fairly quickly.

And tonight is the big Arpora market, my last chance to hear "yes madam come my shop please, good price" in Goa. Tomorrow: packing, cleaning, saying goodbye.

Funny, I write all these little stories, but it is so hard to describe how it really is. It's the smiles of these people and their gesture and their way to move their head and their Indian-English... It's also the sounds and the smell of course, and the intense energy of such busy places and more quiet ones. It's the pleasure of finding out how things are done here, and how it all works, because it is such a different world. And yet, I feel really good here, and India is giving me so much.

I will be lying down on the porch tonight for one last night, listening to the sound of the crickets and other critters of the forest around, and maybe some religious music that comes from the little temple, or maybe from the bazaar, watching the bats and the stars, one last night in Goa.


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