Living in Goa
To make a 5 years story short, I'll just say that I now live in Goa, South of India.
It is no secret to anyone that knows me that I have a love-hate relationship with India: it's been 3 years and I still vacillate all day long.
Meanwhile, I go through phases of clicking pix and then, I do a great job at ignoring them.
I am, by no means, a pro-photographer. Not even close to a semi-pro. I have never even bought a camera in my entire life.
It just happens that I-kind-of-stole-but-not-really my mom’s brand new little camera that my beloved ex had gifted her.
Aaaand that is a story for another rainy day, boys and girls.
In any case, it is a Lumix 12.1, a simple point and shoot little digital camera with quite a few nice little features. I like it plenty.
The thing though, is that I dunno if it is just in moi-head, but I am often surprised at the amazingly good pix it takes.
I'll probably get pros snorting, swearing and declaring them first-class scheisser. No doubts they would be right.
But all in all, a few seemed like, maybe good enough to shared? So I got spunkaaay and dared.
So, agreed. I am not your typical 'show-the-world-how-stunningly-beautiful-India-is' style.
Those pix are taken by those who HAVE fallen in love with India. I am happy for them. Truly. I am. **tiny sigh**
Mine are more like the other side of the coin, the back-doors of the not so beautiful India?
Leave me a comment! Even if you ARE a pro and want to tell me how caca-poohpooh you think they are!
PS. New galleries and pix coming up. Visit me often!
I wont even try to pretend.
I sadly do not know the names of
many of these sensational flowers.
I mean, yes, they are Crocuses and Bougainvilleas and Lilies and Crab Claws and Hibiscus and Callas but don't ask me much more past that. [Well I HAD to show that I know
something, don't I ?!]
Their color bursts and stunning array of shapes are a treat that never ceases to reiterate how much of a bland-boring-blah human gnognote
I am. You as well, BTW. Just saying. [I am going to take a wild guess here and just presume that you are human]
These humble moi. And that is a very, very good thing. I require loads of humbling, you see. [ I am French. Therefore I am pompous]
So I hope that you will enjoy them. If, by any strange coincidence, you end up with the gnognote** feeling as I do, maybe we should consider starting a gnognote support group or something?
**Gnognote: peanuts/little nothing/of little importance.
To hear the PROPER pronunciation click here: http://www.forvo.com/search/gnognote/
Don't bother listening to the other sites. I did, and they clearly do not know what they are saying.
In Goa, one hardly needs to leave its home - or go very far, for their daily needs: just about everything can be bought right by your front steps.
What is it that you need today, dear? A broom? Flowers or sugar cane juice? Kitchen chairs or a tattoo perhaps? Maybe a blessing from your favorite God? Baked goods, seafood, veggies? Maybe you need some mattress repairs or a haircut or to weigh yourself or a scrambled egg sandwich?!! I could go on like this for a very long time…No kidding.
I often run to my terrace when I hear them to try to figure out what the heck they are selling. You might think it is silly but you know, It isn’t THAT obvious: I still haven’t figured many of them - even after 3 years.
I like how they all have their own clamor to announce their presence. Some have piercing screeches, other wail or is it singging - I’m not quite sure. Some have the Driiing! Driiings! and my all-time-favorite, the very cool Poooettt! Pooooettts!
You can see “mera muchi” [my cobbler] [Yes, I do speak 3 words of Hindi] who was the sweetest man ever and who re-re-repaired so many of my ripped flip-flops [no kidding - can you believe that they DO repair flip-flops here?!?!] and he always refused for me to pay him??!! So I often brought him little gifts which always made him giggle with happiness.
Let's playyyy... hmmmm...
So I say: India's electricitry.
And you sayyyy....
SCARY AS HELL??
Heyyyy! You win!
I mean. Really. There should be a Die Hard 6 movie done on this.
Okay. True. I know NOTHING about electricity. But doesn't it seem to you though,
that with such aberrant, perilous, risky, unprotected and wire-exposed electrical panels,
[Hellooooo! Have you ever heard of Moonsoon?],
that buildings should be catching on fire like popping popcorn without a lid?
But magically, they don't. Their Gods must be real.
How can this be? How do inspections get away with this? Well, huumm… This is India?
So there you have it.
I’m just very thankful to be living on a private villa that was built by the owner and that he just happens to be an electrical engineer.
Praise my luck!
where I want to
Well that is just it. Plants, trees grow everywhere and anywhere they want or can.
I am not sure why Indians let them be just so. Is it from sheer respect of life or is that they just can’t be bothered?
In any case.
Don’t you go thinking that some of these are abandoned hole in the walls, because they are not.
They ARE inhabited, alright, and are definitely someone’s home sweet home.
I'm Not Dead, You Silly People!
Ok. I'll admit that I am just not quite ready to write anything about this one yet. I'm just too plain emotional about it.
The day will come that I will be able to, but not today.
Thank you for your understanding ladies and gentlemen.
Well I do feel a tad peculiar about clicking pix of people’s privy clothes.
There is something just about too… intimate for my senses.
But really, it's public domain?
Yes. Yes. Of course it does. But that is not the point.
The point is that dryers are pretty rare in Indian families, so hanging their culottes (and I don’t care what the dictionary says. Culottes are women’s undies and certainly not petticoats, sarongs and certainly not tutus) to dry in the open, is a necessity. A must.
It’s just that people are very good at pretending to not see them.
And that is exactly what I am not doing. So I’m losing Indian Brownies’ points on that one.
And of course, I requestion myse... WHAAAT??! What do you mean 'REquestion' doesn’t exist in English? Go ahead, look for it, you won't find it: it's nooottt theeeere! So you have ‘requisitioning’ and ‘resizing’ and ‘resectioning’ and even ‘reapportion’, but one can only question things ONCE?!!? THAT is SOOO stupid, I can’t get over it!) (It is in time like such that I am darn happy that I am not English. Enuff said.)
So yes, I was saying… Ahuuumm… I REQUESTION myself MANY TIMES, n’est-ce-pas? My tank fills up with countless doubts: this is not interesting, is it? What am I doing for crying out loud!? Who cares about clothes on clotheslines?!? I am being ridicreous! (Oki. THAT one I know was invented by one of my kids). Well you have a good point. It is not entirely fascinating. (I wonder if one can REfascinate for Pete’s sake?)
Buuuut it has a certain soothing, comforting feeling. Life goes on, no matter what. It’s that simple.
I never promised any epiphanies, did I?
According to the legend, Narkasur was a bad-bad rakshas (demon) who terrorized entire villages, capturing, killing and even eating everyone in sight I think. But good Lord Krishna came along, killed our bad-bad Rakshas freeing all villagers from his terrorism.
Today the celebration of this liberation is known as Diwali, a one day festival in October, where people all over India lit up their homes and outdoors with oil lamps and hang rakshas dolls above their doors. It is the festival of lights that also celebrates New Years day.
[Don’t ask me how this works of having New Years in October, I don’t get it myself: this is India.]
I don’t know about the rest of Goa, but in the village that I am staying in, called Taleigao, each neighbourhood were frenetically busy for a couple of weeks, building their own effigies of our bad-bad demon Narkasur. As you can see, they are structures of all sizes, some fairly big, made of wire and papier mache, stuffed to the crown with smoky grass and firecrackers and finally air-brushed painted. At dawn, our bad-bad Narkasur is mercilessly set on fire after having suffered a full night of well-deserved taunting, fierce scoffing, and all sorts of possible abuse from the villages’ dancing men which, by this time, are quite plastered and plenty sloshed alright. One will be smart to spot and keep their distance from the zealous ones that gathered their private stash of firecrackers and that are, in their devoted folly, excitedly throwing them all over the place with zero concern or trepidation for who or what is around them. I even saw one, so out of his mind, dancing and shouting - OK. Maybe it was singing, forgetting that he had a lit one still in his hand. When it popped, it didn't seem to freak him out one bit that he was now missing some bits and pieces of his fingers. Twice some thrown firecrackers landed on my jeans as I was trying to get as close as possible to the sculptures to take my pix, but no harm was done. BTW. Some pix are pretty bad being night ones, so I apologize about that...
In any case, I have to admit that I was pretty impressed by how well these sculptures turned out. I didn't expect them to look so good.
I thought it to be a real pity though, that so many of them were finished late in the night and burned a few hours later, not giving enough time for people to tour them and have a real chance to see them all. So that is why we decided to get up at 4, riding my Scooter like a maniac going from one to the other as fast as we could.... By 6 am it was all over and done with. They all went to sleep, exhausted but elated, having done such a meritable job of showing off bad-bad Narkasur who the real bosses are, here in Goa. Good Lord Krisna can sleep soundly: the guys here got it under control.
This is the eclectic collection.
Things that stroked me as splendid or grand or intriguing or disgusting or droll or… ‘something’ in any case.
Hoping that it will entertain you, one way or the other with a chortles or a grooosss!