It was a friday afternoon. Instead of working @ office i was busy dreaming about all the fun and joy i would be having over the next weekend. We (Rena, Vineeth, Bhargav, Mayur, Polls, Enthu, Actually, Tina, Praneeth and myself) decided to meet up in Panjim on 23th and have fun till the 26th of January. Me and Rena started off @ 4:30 and waited for the 5:30 bus at Goregaon. The bus was an hour late and we started off to Goa in midst of heavy traffic.

The bus carried on slowly, along the Western express highway and then towards Navi Mumbai. By the time the bus crossed Panvel (outskirts) we were 4 hours into the journey. Luckily i got to watch the Three Idiots movie, which i was longing to see since two weeks now. The bus tagged along the western coast, moving slowly through the ghats. After 3 hrs of delay we reached panjim at 10 AM.

We went straight to Hotel Ameya, opp St. Enez church, where we booked a dorm (10 beds) for all of us. The bus from banglore that was supposed to be coming at 9 AM was delayed due to some arbit strike on NH17. That meant me and Rena had to spend the rest of the day alone. We rented a bike (splendor) and started off towards the beaches in Panjim. We took turns as we drove on towards Dona paula, a good view point on the outskirts of the city.

I was a beginner when it came to handling geared bikes, and was slowly gaining in confidence as we zoomed past the outskirts. I was coping well with the first gear trouble. We took a few pics at Dona paula, caught a few glimpses of the aggressive movements of the shoal fish, and started our way back to the city. We then kept roaming here and there, before all the others reached the hotel at aroung 5 PM.

All of us then went in search of more bikes, and after a lot of struggle we got 3 pulsars and another splendor. Due to the 4 day break, there were a lot of tourists in search of bikes, and that meant we had to shell out extra cash for the bikes (400/day per bike). Not willing to waste even a few minutes we were on our way searching for beach side weekend parties (:D)

I was lucky enough to get hold of a pulsar, and after all the confidence i had gained during the day, I decided to give a shot at the pulsar. Thanks to Bhargav, who helped me out on the bike, we were out of the city in a flash, onto the NH17 towards Calangute beach, north of Goa.
Driving the pulsar was a thrilling experience, especially in the night. It was not that hard as i had expected and 15 mins into the drive, i was oozing with confidence that i could drive any bike (:P)

After a few stops, enquiring about our destination, we reached Calangute at 9 PM, where we had one of our worssst dinners EVER! We were tired and at around 11PM we decided to get back to our hotel (17 kms) and come back refreshed early in the morning. We drove back precariously, in the chill weather, with the fear of being run down by drunken drivers.

Day 2, started off quite early in the day (11 AM) when every one got ready and had breakfast. We decided to go to the Calangute beach, now in search of adventure sports. We reached Calangute at around 12 Am, not before enthu had a flat tire. We were interested in experiencing all the thrills and frills that the beach had on offer. We first took off on a jet skii. Padded with safety life jackets, all of us went on a ride one after another on a jet skii. It was an awesome experience as the jet jumped along the surface of the water whenever there was a wave. At the speed we were going the ski literally was floating in air just tapping the water as it flew across the raggid waves.

The next ride we took to was called a “bumper ride”. We sat in pairs on circular round tubes and were dragged into the sea, with the help of a fast motor boat. We lay down in sleeping postures as we held on to the bumper by means of 2 handles. Every time the motor boat swayed we hit the waves hard, threatening to put us down into the sea. The entire ride lasted for 5 minutes before we were flung into the sea as the motor boat took a right angled turn.

The ride that followed was the “banana ride”. 5 of us were to sit on a banana shaped balloon and we were taken into the sea on it. It was highly unstable and everytime one lost his balance, he would take all the 5 down with him. We fell down 3 times even before we started off on our way into the sea. Few minutes later we were then down when the boat took a turn. As i slipped down the banana hit me hard on my head. I felt as if i was drowning. The fact that my feet can no longer touch the ground started to frighten me. Then later i realised instead of going down into the sea, i was rising to the surface. I had my life jacket on, and that meant there was no way i could drown. I then felt relaxed and slowly swam my way back to the boat. The way back to the shore was less frightening even though i was feeling very weak and tired.

We then took a 20 minutes break, before we took off roughly 3 kms into the sea on a speed boat. We were then transferred into a para sailing boat. Fitted to its back was a parachute. We took the ride in pairs, as it was a busy sunday evening. Me (back) and polls (front) were the last ones to take the ride. We were all strapped to the parachute and then the boat sped fast flying across the waves. As the boat gained speed we started flying gaining altitude as and when the boat accelerated. From the top we could catch a glimpse of the brilliant Goan coastline. We could see the waves and the rough sea clearly from above. Even before we were done admiring the beatutiful ride, we were pulled back towards the boat. The 2 minute ride was spectacular and thrilling!

We then took off towards Candolim after having our lunch at the Dominoes. We reached Candolim 5 minutes after the sunset. It was a spectacular view, with an old ship docked very close to the beach. We enjoyed the cool evening breeze and took to photography. As usual CR was the centre of attraction, and now with KAKI claiming to give away one of the most honorable gift of the wing to the best pic, there was hectic competition (:P). After the light faded away, we played a game of kabaadi and 2 games of wolf. After we were done we started our way back to the hotel. I was driving the pulsar constantly in excess of 60kmph, sometimes even touching 80 on a very chill night without a jacket on. It was a wonderful experience considering it was only my 2nd day driving bikes :D

The third day began with people voting to go south of goa to the churches and the museums. We started at 11 in the morning after having our brunch. We reached old goa in 20 mins. We saw the museum (not so spectacular) and the three churches. Basilica of Bom Jesus was a spectacular church that contained the body of St. Francis Xavier. We prayed there for a while and then took off further south all the way to Madgoa. We then went to one of the finest beaches south of Goa, the Kolva beach. The ride all the way to Kolva was exciting and fun. We had fun in the shallow waters of Kolva taking good group pics. Not to forget what rena was made on the beach (:D :D ).. ………… SENSORED …………..

We had an an awesome view of the sunset and then started our back to Madgaon. We went to a hotel called Tavir (opp KTC bus stand ) in Madgoan, where i was treated to goan delicacies. Never before i had eaten such awesome fish in my entire life. I strongly recommend people to try out the King Fish Rawa fry and the Irish fish pieces. After a very full meal and a plate of Gajar halwa with butterscotch ice cream, I was full !! and my wallet empty @@ (:D)

The way back was a 30 km ride on the NH17. The road was bad and frightening. All the vehicles with high beams added more problems to the already existing road woes and aweful bike lighting. No matter how hard or how many times i tried dipping the lights, i got no response from the other end. My eyes began to water, and the breeze threatening to blow me away. But me and enthu on the pulsar held on. It was an extremely challenging drive and i was glad at the end of the day that i made it. Just the third day of my life on the bike and i had experienced all sorts of driving conditions. 60 minutes after we started from madgoan we were back to our hotel playing an intriguing game of wolf.

On the final day, we decided not to strain ourself and visit a fort that was just 13 kms away from panjim. We missed the shorter route and then took to a longer route. We all reached Fort Aguada, a 16th century portugese fort. We then took to photography again, until we were tired of jumping around for pics. The view of panaji and the Mandovi river that goes along the city from the fort was awesome. Around 1 PM we decided to get back to panjim and lie down in the park on the banks of the Mandovi river. After lunch, we took a nap on the smooth and fine sands on the river bank.

I finally went back to the hotel at around 6 PM. I was feeling terribly sad, now that i had to leave my friends and go back to work the very next day. We returned our bikes and all of us met at the bus stand. Surprisingly all of us had our busses starting at 7:30 (Whatta coincidence). It was a bad moment for me, leaving all my friends. I was almost in tears, wishing and hoping we stayed back for another couple of days. That was not to happen and 10 minutes later all of us were on our way back to our respective places.

Next day morning we reached mumbai at 7:30AM and when i saw myself in the mirror i was shocked what i had done to my face, I couldn’t recognise myself at the first instance. I had put on so much tan, that all of my friends at mumbai struggled to identify me (:P). It was an awesome 4 day (23- 26th JAN 2010) adventure on the roads and beaches of goa.

I would want to thank everyone (Mayur in particular) in making some time out of their busy lifes and making this a memorable and an exciting trip. Hoping and longing for more trips with you guys in future, I continue my daily life again in mumbai.

Ps: We all missed you, your photography and your comparisions KAKI.

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