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Be aware the Beach variant

By on July 14, 2021
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Be aware the Beach variant

As more and more Indians get vaccinated, they will hopefully leave Goa alone. To its own devices and its own pace of self-discovery

There are three kinds of people who visit Goa: those who love its laid-back demeanour; those who have precious little to do in life and now want to seemingly retire; and those who own fancy homes and seek a getaway.

The pandemic unleashed a new virus called work from home (WFH), for those who are uninitiated in pandemic jargon. But all these folks were not essentially in Goa to work: they were fleeing Covid. And many of these Covidiots actually believed that Goa would remain an island. But it didn’t after these hordes of human locusts infected the place.

My wife Lakshmi and I have had a home in Goa for years: it’s a quaint Portuguese bungalow over 125 years old. It lacks the finesse of a Greater Kailash or Malabar Hill home: in the sense, we don’t have marble where none is required and we read with the light from table lamps (in a civilised manner) rather than some gritty light from an ugly chandelier. So, when we went to Goa in June 2020, just as domestic flights had commenced, we isolated ourselves in our home – never stepping out except for the occasional grocery run. We had to move to Goa because our then 

nine-month-old infant had been confined to an apartment in Gurgaon and that is not what she deserved. Our move to Goa was designed so that we would be sequestered there amidst coconut groves and the pelting rain rather than seek out places of fine dining or shop for some ugly homes where developers had run amok chopping any tree they could see so that the new owners could build their ugly monstrosities and invite some even more loutish people to Goa, throwing all caution to the winds and imagining Goa was Covid-free. June and July were placid months. No one stepped out and if you did venture to the beach, you wore a mask even there. Hotels were shut; swimming pools were closed and restaurants were non-existent. 

Our days would begin with listening to Kishori Amonkar or Paul Anka depending on the mood you were in; walks within the compound of our home; cooking sessions; followed by lunch and a nice susegad siesta, after which a cup of tea and then dinner. More often than not, we would be in bed by about 9pm. This happened every day. Yes, there were times when you took a five-minute walk to someone’s home and enjoyed their hospitality: but at the most, there were only four people at any given time, all part of a social bubble.

Read the full article in 'Viva Goa' magazine copy.

Viva Goa magazine is now on stands. Available at all major book stalls and supermarkets in Goa.



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