Friday, April 03, 2009

Goa is not what they claim it to be!

[Disclaimer: I lurve Goa/Goans/Goan-food. Mainly because I spend a lot of time within slapping distance of a Goan.]

BOMBAY (3 Apr) So last weekend I found myself boarding a flight to Goa, presumably for attending a wedding reception. However, even a pea-brained monkey knows that no one goes to Goa for attending receptions, and I am slightly better than a monkey. Almost a gorilla, if you will. So the plan was to spend no more than twelve seconds at the said reception, and spend the rest of the stay bathing in (a) Ocean water and/or (b) Beer. Little did I know that my sugary sweet plans will become more bitter than a karela dipped in bile.

It all began when all of my following pre-conceived notions about Goa turned out to be false, thanks to the misleading info given to me by my Goan friends, the tourist brochures, and Goa tourism advertisements:
(a) Every one doesn't wear a straw hat and play Spanish guitar.
(b) People don't sit on their porches all day, drinking feni. (Most do, but not all).
(c) The proportion of non-Catholic population is much more than zero percent.
(d) Remo Fernandes and Mario Miranda can't be sighted just like that.
(e) Hardly 10-20% girls wear skirts, instead of, say 98-99%.
(f) Beaches occupy only 0.2% of the land area of Goa, instead of the expected 97.3% (with the airport occupying the remaining 2.7%).
(g) People lead normal boring family lives in Goa, just like in the rest of the country.

Needless to say I was disappointed beyond measure. But my miseries had just started. For what I saw and experienced next, changed me irreparably for the rest of my life. I am, ofcourse, talking about the oxymoron "Goan veg food". For you see, I belong to the creamy layer of people who perform repulsion-demonstrating acrobatics when offered non-veg food. During my many "veg" meals in Goa, I found out the following:

(a) The epitome of a Goan veg meal, the creme de la creme, the Mithun Chakravarty of the Goan vegetarian cuisine is none other than *hold your breath* the jackfruit. Whereas for me, it is in the category of inedibles clubbed under the generic label of kaddoo.
(b) All Goans are lactose intolerant. This explains the lack of curd/lassi/chhaach/paneer/gravy/(I am drooling now) in any of the Goan meals. Makes you tear your hair and yell "WHYYY! GOD WHY!!" , doesn't it?
(c) There is no difference between french fries and fish fries. This is because they are both cooked in the same oil. In retrospect this wasn't too bad, because the dry potato fries got a smooth passage down my throat helped along by my gag reflex.
(d) Chapaatis are for pansies. Self-explanatory.
(e) Speak and thou shalt be heard, but ask for a spoon and thou shalt be given one tight slap.
(f) The trick to being a good guest is to ask for second and third helpings, all the while fantasizing about Domino's pizzas.

But seriously, and here comes the ass-kissing part, I did love the hospitality in a wedding-waala-ghar, and I did enjoy the food and the company, and I did spend about 7200 more seconds at the reception than the original plan. So all in all it was a wonderful trip. Although someone should seriously follow up on my suggestion of serving a complimentary chunk of paneer to every North Indian tourist after landing. You can usually tell those tourists apart by their smashingly good serial-molester looks.

So long Goa! and thanks for all the fish (fries i.e.).

PS: One more proof that Goa is not what they claim it to be -- not even a single news about a white woman being molested. Yes, I was in Goa. Yes, even then.