I had a great taxi ride to Delhi International Airport on Saturday morning. It was a beautiful sunny day and roadside life was interesting to watch. Sights included a man sitting in a chair by the road having what looked like a haircut/shave and a head massage and a herd of cows sheltering in the shade of some roadside trees. Whilst stopped at some traffic lights a beggar lady with a baby knocked persistently on the car window. A firm ‘no’ didn’t get rid of her so I tried gazing in the other direction …only to watch a man opening his car door to throw up on the road. Three times.
Flew with Sahara Airlines who have a wacky auction/bingo entertainment thing happening on board: you bid on a slip of paper for item(s) from a brochure (eg. an electrical mini tandoor oven) the highest bidder wins and some charity benefits from the money raised! Very bizarre.
Arrived in Goa Dabolim airport – very small – at 3pm. Whilst waiting for the luggage to be unloaded I booked 3 x trips at the Goa Tourism counter: a sunset cruise on the River Mandovi for that evening, a south Goa tour for the following day and a north Goa tour for Monday. Trips booked and luggage collected, I took a taxi to Panjim for 380 Rs (around £5). Taxis from Dabolim airport are pre-paid, with fixed rates set by the government’s Department of Tourism (GTDC) so no hassles bartering – all very straight forward, relaxing and most welcome. The half hour taxi ride was part coastal and part countryside – all very scenic and rustic and the air was noticeably cleaner for which my lungs were greatly relieved (until arrival at Panjim).
I just had time to get settled into a room at the Panjim Inn, reputed to be one of Panjim’s upmarket accommodations situated in the Fountainhas Portuguese district, before going out again for the sunset cruise.
Santa Monica sunset cruise on the Mandovi River with live Goan music and dance entertainment. Traditional dances included denki, fijddi, Portuguese and corredmino plus alternate sessions for the punters to dance – schooldiscotastic.