Daze, lots of daze,
lots of dreaming,
silences...lots of them,
the kinds that feel right,
the kinds that feel like home,
playful nostalgia, abundant debauchery and a horde of memories, all of them from decades ago.
I have been trying to look up a word for lots but I keep coming up short. Maybe lots will have to do here. Not that a word like abundant conveys the sentiment better. Just fancier I guess. Will stop rambling now and get to the point.
Have you noticed how Goa is one place that brings ear-to-ear smiles, if not enthusiastic grins on most people’s faces. Just try saying the word in front of a group of close friends and you will see a whole new cluster of emotions unravel. Excitement, sarcasm, laughter, sadness, attachment, love, pain, solidarity, I could go on. Again, lots of this and more.
I recently went to Goa with a bunch of people who are so entangled in my life, it would be a sad demarcation and almost an unrealistic assessment of the relationships shared, to call them just ‘friends’. But let’s do that for the sake of this piece. So if you ask me with what intent I am writing this one, I have nothing to say really. I wouldn’t want to tell you about the places we went to because they’re hundreds of them, all over Goa. Boozy, drenched in sand, peaceful places. Places that make you want to take a backpack and live on that very beach that you walked all evening on. Shacks, bars, pubs and cafes that bustle and hymn quite jubilantly with the otherwise calm ocean just right across. Places that welcome the sunrise and watch the sun as it sets its marvellous self across waves, rocks, turtles and more. There’s peace, serenity and yet a restlessness in the air. There's hope for more and yet an invigorating sense of loss, of betrayals, friendships broken, crimes committed and lovers left behind. There is truce, fire, spirit and a soul. All in one place.
So, we drank, sang and possibly polished off the booze from most establishments we went to quite successfully. It adds to the charm when your friend also decides to book a venue that stumps your senses, for his wedding. It was three whole days of gazing at the sea and hoping that time doesn’t pass as quickly as it always does. Three days of countless memories that are bound to resurface for years to come. And while my friend (Malhar, we love you) and another very dear one (Deep, we missed you) might have not really lived it with us, it almost felt like they were right there. Right besides one of us. The usual lines, the usual anecdotes. And just the usual banter.
And it made me realise just one thing which I begun doubting every time I travel to a place that I haven’t been to before; that people matter the most. You could do a whole trip across the world and not feel as enriched and soulful as you might feel after just dipping your feet in the ocean with the right people. You could take exotic cruises, fly to distant lands and sky dive from airplanes and yet come home with a feeling of something amiss. Something so terrifyingly amiss, it almost doesn’t leave the mind at rest. But the right people can change that in the blink of an eye. And I felt that. I felt complete. Nothing could have been better and nothing could have lasted more, it was exactly how it should have been.
Okay, maybe sky diving could be an exception to this feeling, don’t really need these idiots around me when I am jumping off a plane, could do that with a stranger and give no hoots about company to be honest. (Kidding) (Or maybe not)