It’s been 3 years since I moved to Goa. The descriptions of its beauty were often trite and I never cared enough to imagine what Goa actually might be like. While most of my time since last three years has been spent inside the campus, I had some occasions where I experienced the less talked about beauty of this state. At first, this very beauty I am talking about was a serious pain in the ass. I remember being absolutely baffled when, for the first time, an item was removed from my cart to manage the lack of exact change to pay my bill off. See I was accustomed to the more ‘profitable’ act of adding a couple of chocolates in the cart in such situations, but that would require the Goan on the counter to give a damn.
People would take long lunch breaks and go to the first floor of their shops leaving the actual shop unattended (but with an open door for someone to come in). The waiter wont tell you what’s in the dinner menu unless it is dinner time; make do with the snacks menu and the snacks served during 6:30 in the evening and don’t bother yourself with any superfluous information. These incidents made me think that Goans were absolutely crazy and backward and will someday be enlightened by the idea of consumerism, and that then Goa will be beautiful. Now I hope it never happens. See the Goan seller is one of the few in his profession, who want you to treat them as fellow humans first. The currency for their products or services, fortunately, can not be printed on a meretricious piece of paper alone.
I don’t know if this is a result of ignorance or a value system built after a long thought process and then proliferated through culture. Regardless of that, I find it beautiful. I haven’t exactly been able to blend into it. Therefore, I don’t see myself settling here. But that is because I don’t deserve Goa yet. See, the tourists come here, and the self serving Goa will distract them with the beauty they want to see. A beauty you can cherish temporarily. During that, you will probably pay enough for Goa to be able to maintain its real beauty. If you decide to stay longer as residents, there is a good chance you will yearn the blandishing by the sellers in your home city. And you will leave. An extremely fortuitous setting indeed.
Even the physical beauty transcends the concept of ocean meeting sand. Panjim is one of the most beautiful cities I have been to in India. I have loved having to look for some well known eating joints placed (with no regard to ease of accessibility), in the dense of residential blocks. The trees alongside the Dayanand Bandodkar Marg should have been Buddha’s first choice (please don’t get too technical) to attain peace underneath. I will end this post with a few pictures from yesterday’s visit to Panjim. I hope you enjoy these.