Laos……………

Having travelled quite extensively in Thailand and Vietnam and to a lesser extent in Cambodia, it becomes immediately obvious on entering Laos, that it is a poor relation to these other southeast Asian countries; this difference is perhaps more pronounced crossing from Thailand as I did, where the infrastructure of the country is far more advanced………….The quality of the roads in Laos are not as good and unlike Thailand they do not have any rubbish collection system, so you notice a lot of garbage strewn by the side of many roads in this beautiful country………………….

Laos is home to only 7 million people (approx.)  but despite having such a relatively small population, a third of them live below the official UN poverty line, which is defined by those living on less than US $ 1.25 per day (75p)………..there are many different ethnic groups including a lot of Vietnamese that have migrated across the country’s eastern border with Vietnam……………..

The Vietnamese in Laos are immediately recognisable by their hats, which are worn universally by all Vietnamese, almost like some kind of symbolic badge of national identification……..

Frogs for sale in a roadside market…………

I watched her selling some and she sells them by weight, making sure that none of them are jumping in the air at the time of reading the scale…………..

……….a few stalls along, and some cooked ones, on a stick………..I’d rather have a raspberry mivi……………..

above and below…………….another of the waterfalls that we visited………….

These girls were flagging down all vehicles……………..they were collecting for the building of a new temple for their village…………..

 

above and below………….the ancient temples of Vatphu; constructed of stone and of Khmer architecture, they bear a resemblance to the temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia………although not as vast and impressive as Angkor Wat, I found visiting them a lot more satisfying because they were free of the thousands of tourists that seem to be omnipresent at the vast complex in Cambodia…………

 

above and below…………more waterfalls, and although the many falls that we visited were not on the Mekong, with the exception of the falls at Khone Phapheng on my previous posting, they were all very beautiful and spectacular in their own right…………..

 

above and below ………….families from 2 different ethnic groups in their traditional costumes……………………

Children learn to mimic at such a young age………..the 2 young girls above have obviously been watching the ridiculous poses that teenage girls in Laos (and Thailand) strike in an attempt to look provocative in photographs………….

above and below…………….no such posing issues here………….

I saw this wonderful bamboo growing by the side of the road and immediately wanted to build a business empire making furniture from it……………..

On one of the large islands on the Mekong that we visited, Yada noticed a little, one room school…………so naturally, being a school teacher and speaking Lao, she had to go in and have a chat with the teacher, who, like all the kids was wonderfully friendly and laughing and smiling……………until I took my camera from my pocket, when, like most people in this region, they all put on their “passport photo” faces

 

Yada and our tour guide buying some fruit at the roadside…………..

…………from this Vietnamese lady…………..

Buddha ………….between the roots of two old trees………..

above and below…………in the grounds of an old temple by the side of the Mekong

Huge Buddha at another temple………..note the diminutive red shirted figure in the foreground…………………

Above and below…………..a small shop in Pakse is run by a charity for the survivors of human trafficking and their families……………they have 2 looms in the shop where they weave beautiful scarves and other garments from silk and wool; and where they also teach survivors and underprivileged youngsters how to weave…………..if any of you are ever in Pakse please support this wonderful enterprise…………… Dream Weaver is their label….

 

Below…………..we happened to be in Laos for Songkran (Lao New Year) which is the biggest festival of the year in Laos; officially 3 days, the first being the last day of the old year,  the second being “the day of no day” falling into neither the old or new year, and the last day being the first day of the new year……………traditionally celebrated by the respectful pouring of water (usually perfumed with fresh flowers) over elders and monks for the blessing of a long and healthy life, before escalating into a manic free-for-all throwing of water over anyone you can……….

above and below…………….a lot of the youngsters in Laos, like these ones celebrating in Pakse, have modernised the throwing of water by using shaving foam, flour and apparently, whipped cream !! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FLOWERS AND BLOSSOMS OF LAOS………………………………………

Friends on Facebook will have already seen most of these pics, but for those of you that haven’t…………….………every country in southeast Asia has a national flower, and in Laos it is the frangipani…………but they also have many other stunning flowers and blossoms that you might like to take a peek at…………

………..Lotus

……….spot the red ants………………

This frangipani was on the banks of the Mekong, which seemed rather fitting for the national flower of Laos……………….

I just love the depth of colour of these climbing flowers, and the stark contrast with their green surrounding………………….

spot the butterfly………………………….

blue hydrangea, I believe…………..well it’s blue ………….

Orchids ??

Christmas thingamajigs !!

 

 

Overland From Thailand Into Laos……… (Lao People’s Democratic Republic)

I made the journey by car with Yada, her Mum, her younger sister Kak and her auntie (her Mum’s sister from Sakon Nakhon) to Pakse in Laos; we drove south to Ubon Ratchathani, in Thailand, where we had booked a taxi and a driver for a 6 day trip into Laos……….taking a Thai registered car into Laos is a logistical nightmare, and in the case of Yada’s car, impossible. You cannot take any car into Laos without full documentation to show that there is no outstanding debt on the vehicle, and Yada still has 2 years finance on her car, so the taxi and driver was our only option, an option, I might add, that we are now pleased that we were forced into…………..

Last winter I spent 3 hours crossing the border from Thailand into Cambodia at Aranyaprathet /  Poipet, so I was anticipating another protracted procedure at the Thai / Laos border at Chong Mek; fortunately, my fears were unfounded…………..firstly, this border crossing is nowhere near as popular and consequently as busy as the Thai / Cambodia border which is the gateway to Siem Reap and the Temples of Angkor Wat, and secondly, I had Yada to negotiate the whole palaver for me, she speaks fluent Lao and consequently it was all very swift and painless……………..

This lady was just crossing into Laos for a day’s trading…………..

 

Lovely old motorbike and sidecar combo in Pakse……………..

Above and below……..this young rascal had been stationed outside the toilets at a petrol station, it is apparently the norm in Laos and he was charging 1000 kip (7 pence)………..

above and below………….the freshly pressed juice from sugarcane is very popular in Laos and stalls like these are everywhere………..I tried it once in India where it is also very popular, but it is a tad too sweet for my liking……………

……….some beautifully crafted offerings left outside a temple……………….

 

………..above and below…………..we made a day trip to the waterfalls at Khone Phapheng which are situated in southern Laos, very close to the border with Cambodia; the largest waterfalls in south east Asia and the widest waterfalls in the world, comprising of 6 main falls several kilometres wide……………..any photographs other than ariel, can never begin to capture the power and majesty of this spectacular place, as the full force of the mighty Mekong river cascades and thunders over the rock formations…………..

…………these magnificent waterfalls are the main reason that the Mekong river is not fully navigable into China…………..so they have been a key factor in preserving the integrity of the river and have been a massive help in protecting the river from the inevitable industrialisation that would have taken place many years ago if the falls were not there………….there remain some places on our planet where mother nature still holds sway……………..

Although Laos is a land-locked country, the Mekong provides it with an archipelago of over 4,000 islands, known as Si Phan Don which are situated in the river stretching northwards for about 50 kilometres from the  Khone Phapheng falls………..here the river splits into many channels and tributaries around the islands and sandbars, widening to 14 kilometres in places………….

We took a boat trip on this part of the Mekong around some of the islands……….some of the larger islands are inhabited, but the vast majority are not, and provide a wonderful refuge for the great diversity of wildlife that inhabit this huge pulsating artery that is the lifeblood for millions of people, fish and animals……………..this part of the Mekong is home to the rare freshwater species of dolphin known as the Irrawaddy dolphin…………we were not fortunate enough to see any of them (on this occasion)

Above…………one of the many restaurants along the banks or as in this case, in the river Mekong at Pakse…………………….and below, Yada and I on a rooftop just before a sunset dinner at the restaurant in the 3 pics below…………..

 

…………..above………….sunset by the side of the Mekong at Pakse

Khanom to Sakon Nakhon………………

I left Khanom on 1st April to drive Yada’s car north to Sakon Nakhon in the north east of Thailand; with her Mum and Dad and younger sister Kak in the car, it was a leisurely drive that took us 3 days………….we had no reason to hurry and Yada and her Mum in particular  like to stop and visit temples along the way………….and there are an incredible number of temples in Thailand, so, much as I enjoy visiting them myself, I was grateful that they were reasonably selective……………..

Above and below, at this temple there were 2 huge statues, a perspective of their size can be gained by the 2 people in close proximity to the statue above…………..

Above ………….Yada beneath some pink frangipani blossoms………and below, orchids growing wild at the side of the road……………..

 

Above and below……….this hill top temple was reached by following road signs to the cable car, which was in fact a funicular, but the description was close enough………………..

Above………..we were greeted by this notice when we clambered out of the funicular carriage at the summit…………and it was not a hollow warning, there were scores of monkeys everywhere, and some, like the adolescent male below, were quite aggressive…

We stopped at this roadside stall to buy some of these lotus flower stems………mmmm, not very pretty I thought, then Yada explained that they were for us to eat…….I remained unconvinced until she started popping the pods out of the “shower heads” and removing the outer skins for us to eat………… another delicious snack…………..

………….. above…………the lovely smiling lady at the Lotus stall…………….and below, Yada’s younger sister wanted to stop at this place called “The Swiss Sheep Farm”…..a friend had told her that they had black sheep there…………….

They did not, much to Kak’s disappointment, have any black sheep, but they did have a lovely black swan, below………….

Below………….they also had a couple of swings and I managed to get a reluctant Yada to pose on one of them…………….as always, sans make up, and considering that she cannot afford to spend much of her salary on clothes, she seems to find some very pretty little dresses…………

Lazy Days……………..Hazy Daze

The leisurely and extremely lazy days that I have been spending in Khanom are drawing to an end; next week I will be leaving here with Yada and her family to drive her car to Sakon Nakhon in the north east of Thailand………..we will then make a trip of 5 or 6 days into Laos before I return to Bangkok on 16th April for my return flight to Heathrow the following day ……………

I have spent many days swimming and lazing around the pool of the Rachakiri hotel: I usually take fruit there for lunch, that Yada kindly supplies me with………..above, one of the beautiful and very sweet pineapples that she bought for me, and below an even sweeter water melon………..one of the additional pleasures is having the time to prepare the fruit that you are about to enjoy; though it must be said that I exhausted all my artistic flair on the pineapple, so my preparation and subsequent consumption of the watermelon was a far more rudimentary affair…………

 

Above, a lovely small temple that is near my hotel………..and below, it’s crematorium……

 

The lovely pool and sun terrace are never busy, but today I had the whole place to myself…………..well, almost…………see below

This little fellow makes an appearance everyday, climbing up to the terrace from the rocks below……………..today, however, we had a much larger intruder as you can see below

………..at least 4 foot long, I knew he had caught me off guard when I realised that I was standing on my sun-bed……………..with the left side of my brain telling me that they only eat insects and the right side of my brain asking me why then does he appear to have about two hundred teeth !!

………..this little fellow didn’t hang around either, he was straight over the edge of the terrace…………………

My good buddy Nick posted this photo of a tee-shirt on his Facebook timeline, and I’m sure that he won’t mind me sharing it with my blog audience…………as I said to Nick at the  time, much as I love it, I would never have the courage to wear it……………..based on the sweeping generalisation that most football fans, unlike rugby fans, do not have a sense of humour, when it comes to their sacred sport

 

Above and below…………………you know that you have reached chill factor ten, when you lie on your sun-bed and, not content with gazing at cloud formations, you start photographing them

He turns Imagine up loud…………he knows that face in the cloud    (^∆^)

oh, and you get quite excited when you find a frangipani tree with pink blossoms (most of them are white – see below)

and, above and below……you know you have too much time on your hands when you start playing with the settings on your compact camera, trying to create depth of field bokeh, just to see if you can achieve it with a compact…………….you can (*∆^)

 

Khao Lam……………… Island Temple ……………….and Pink Dolphins

I have spent some lovely (and educational) days with Yada at weekends when she is not teaching…………………..

Above………….I drove her car to this lovely beach where we spent a few hours and then had lunch at a beachside restaurant (below)

Returning from the beach, much to my delight, we met the “Surat Thani Vespa Club” who had parked their scooters under the shade of some trees to take a break on their day ride-out

 

Beautiful “sixties” Vespa 150…………..resplendent in its metallic silver livery, complete with white-wall tyres………….

Above………….a typical vista of the region, a rice field with a backdrop of palms; this was close to a water-melon farm that Yada took me to visit………..

………the melons appear to grow randomly all over this large field…………

………some of the melons weigh in excess of ten kilos, and produce a beautiful tiny and delicate flower as they are growing…………..

 

……..above and below, another mystery was solved for me; the farm also grows these sturdy palms that I had seen so many of in the region………..Yada explained that they are oil-palms, grown for the oil that is derived from their fruit………….she tells me that this oil is used in countless food products and also in the production of biodiesel………….

 

On Sunday we drove to this fishing village, where we negotiated for a local fisherman to take us out in search of pink dolphins……………

There are many limestone islands that rise very steeply out of the sea in the area around Khanom, with many dwellings clinging to the side of the sheer rock-faces………..

We were lucky to get some good sightings of several pink dolphins, I have seen many grey dolphins before, but never any pink ones………..and I had my suspicions that for commercial reasons, artistic licence had hijacked their colour description………..but they really are pink, as my badly focussed, zoom lens photo below will show……..anyone that has stood in a small boat, spinning themselves round like a drunken carrousel trying to get a good shot of an elusive dolphin will appreciate the difficulty………….

 

 

above and below………….the fisherman took us to a tiny uninhabited island, more like a huge steep rock than an island; where much to Yada’s delight, there is a small temple at the top……………so we climbed the fifty or so extremely steep steps to the summit, where we lit incense sticks, made a donation to the temple fund and Yada offered prayers………..

 

Khao Lam…………….below

………………..on our way back from one of our day trips, Yada wanted to introduce me to Khao lam, which is sticky rice mixed with coconut cream and a little sugar, before being stuffed into bamboo tubes, sealed and slowly cooked over charcoal…………….

 

……….above, after being cooked, the tough outside part of the bamboo is skilfully trimmed off by machete, leaving the softer and more flexible inner part that you can peel back by hand when you are ready to eat…………

……….and below…………………….. Yada choosing our goodies from the charcoal-stained lady running the stall………………..the amount of work and the time consumed that are involved in this process, could, understandably, never find a place in the modern world, so it is great to see this old traditional way of producing what is essentially, just a snack, thriving and being appreciated and patronised by the local community………………..I guess it’s a community where time does not yet have a gun in its hand…………….

 

………..above and below, Khao lam is usually made from white rice, but if you are lucky, as we were, they sometimes have some of the rarer black rice……………this wonderful food is then called Khao Neow Dam……………..once you have peeled back a sufficient amount of bamboo, you tease out the mixture with your fingers and thumb………….oh yum yum yum……………this is seriously delicious……………

 

Still In Khanom………………

I am still relaxing in the seaside town of Khanom; well, to be more accurate I am about 7 kilometres south of khanom, where I am ensconced in this lovely little hotel called the Khanommaroc, which you will notice is very unusually named and designed, considering its geographical location………..I have just negotiated another week here at a slightly reduced rate and I am now paying £20.50 per day for my room, breakfast and the hire of the scooter……………happy days !!

….above and below, the Khanonmaroc hotel and its lovely garden, where you can easily imagine that you are just a taxi ride away from Marrakech, until a large serving of Thai mangos and papayas are placed in front of you for breakfast, and your internal sat-nav formats itself back to Thai factory setting…………..

……….below, a few days ago I set out for the day on the scooter and discovered a couple of beautiful and deserted beaches the other side of Khanom to where I am staying…….

………..above, I came across this small fishing village that sits roughly in-between the two lovely beaches that I discovered………..and below, this fisherman wanted to take me out in his long-tail boat to see pink dolphins; they are prolific in this area and I have even seen a couple of them already from the shoreline…………but Yada and I have already planned to make such an excursion one weekend when she is not working…………

………above, the track leading down to the second and totally deserted beach that I found……and below, the beach that it leads to………….

WHY, OH WHY DO THEY DO IT <<<>>> below, immediately behind this stunningly beautiful beach, the calling card of mankind………..this is obviously a conscious act, something they thought about and maybe even discussed, because the litter has all been left in the same place………..like, as if that makes it okay…………. you can almost imagine the conversation “shall we take it with us……no, but let’s leave a tidy mess”……….can’t even blame the tourists, this vulgar mess has been left by local people, it is easy to tell from what is there………..if it were Johnny foreigner, there would be empty tins of John West dolphin friendly tuna, crisp packets and lots of beer cans………….I just find it really sad that having chosen to have a picnic there because they recognised the unspoilt beauty of the location, they then thank mother nature by kicking her in the teeth…………rant over (^∆^)

 

above and below, this region like so much of southern Thailand has many plantations of rubber trees………………………..

and elsewhere you find these wonderful low rise palms, that have large central trunks and a huge fan of palm leaves……………

………almost back to my hotel, a small track leading down to my local beach, with a nice splash of colour

 

 

Khanom (Thailand)

I am now back in Thailand after a month in Goa; I arrived in Goa on 11th January and flew back to Bangkok overnight on 10th February; in those 4 weeks I managed to complete the sale of the apartment that I had bought there in 2007/8…………..in a country where the simplest of tasks such as buying a SIM card for a mobile phone or an internet dongle for a laptop are so weighed down by bureaucracy that they become an endurance test lasting up to a week, it was a remarkable achievement, right up there with the very best, comparable perhaps to swimming the English channel with a gas stove strapped to your back…………front crawl, naturally………….

After one night in Bangkok I took an overnight train south to Surat Thani to meet up with my lovely friend Yada, who, some of you may recall, I travelled with last winter………….she recommended the quiet seaside resort of Khanom to me, which is about 30 kilometres from Donsak, where Yada lives and where she works as a maths teacher in a local government school; I am now staying there (Khanom) which means that we can spend time together at the weekends and meet for dinner some evenings during the week……….

I arrived here last Thursday the 13th February and booked in for 4 nights at the Rachakiri resort and spa, which is a lovely and luxurious hotel in a wonderful location on a small headland at the end of the beach………I have since moved to a much cheaper hotel under the same ownership about a kilometre away, where for £20.00 per night I have a lovely large air-con room, free wi-fi, free use of the swimming pool and facilities at the Rachakiri and a new scooter to poodle around on………….it would be too much to expect breakfast to be included for this price, but on my first day Yada arrived in her car with at least 10 kilograms of fresh fruit for me……..mangos, papayas, water melon, pineapple, rose apples and a couple of others that I don’t know the names of, oh, and a stack of paper plates and a new and very sharp fruit knife………….sorted !!

Above and below are a few photos of the lovely Rachakiri resort and spa…………..where you can swim in the beautiful infinity pool or plunge into the sea beyond……….

Above and below, the hotel swimming pool is surrounded by frangipani trees and their beautiful blossoms

This little fellow is to be seen lazing around the swimming pool every day, enjoying the heat from the tiles and the small rocks that border the pool; he’s about 18″ long, half of which is his tail…………

 

 

View across the bay looking towards Khanom from the road that led me to a lovely little deserted beach………………below

 

 

Above …………..lunch with a view; Somtum, this is the favourite food of Yada (which might explain why she weighs a mere 42 kilos) and she introduced me to it last winter……addiction soon followed……..it is a salad made with shredded green papaya, carrot, peanuts, garlic, chillies, green beans, tomatoes and a few other ingredients in a wonderful spicy dressing; it somehow manages to be very spicy and yet extremely refreshing………………………served to me here at a little beachside restaurant with a bottle of water and a clean glass full of ice for 50 baht……£0.93p at todays exchange rate………….cheaper than any lunch that you can now get on the beach in Goa…………….

Above…………whilst on the subject of food, I discovered this wonderful green vegetable on a recent visit to Bangkok…………. I was totally bemused by the description from the non English speaking restaurant owner, who said it was “stir fried melon seedling”…I assumed this to have been completely lost in translation, until Tuk, the wife of Goy at the Thai Pin restaurant in St Margarets, London, kindly informed me that it is known as Yod fak maew, a particular variety of melon that grows in the north of Thailand………..she also went a step further and posted a photo of them growing on my Facebook page……..see below……….so very well done Tuk and many many thanks (^∆*)

……….and to any of you that have never visited the “Thai Pin” or have not been there for some time, please remember that it provides the best Thai food outside of Thailand, but please do not expect to be fed and watered for 93p ……… (^∆*)

A wind of change………………..

One of my main reasons for visiting Goa again this winter was to sell the apartment that I bought here in 2007/8; I have sold it back to the builder Ramiro Sales, and I must say that he has been very honourable and straightforward at all times during the protracted procedure of the sale

 

Everything that you try to do in India is hamstrung by bureaucracy, and here in Goa they specialize in making things as difficult as they possibly can; this, dovetailed with the “everybody wants a piece of the cake’ corruption, makes for near impossible situations……..so I am extremely grateful to Ramiro for his honesty and integrity, without which, the sale that has now been successfully concluded would not have been possible……….

India………..

they pencil in

they cancel out

they smile at you so sweet

they kiss your arse

they make you wait

they doctor the receipt……………

 

There is a wind of change blowing through Goa, this beautiful idyll is starting to fall victim to its burgeoning popularity; there have been several reports of thefts from visitors rented accommodation, prices have increased dramatically, over 20% in some restaurants………..I have just had my haircut in the same barbers that I use every year, and his price has increased from 50 rupees to 100…………I must say that I got more scissor work for my money than usual, he obviously felt obliged to justify the price hike with a scalping, so I have consequently needed to exercise my editorial rights to deny this post any photographic evidence…………….

 

Okay, the rupee has fallen dramatically in the last year on the world currency markets and £1.00 now gets you 100 rupees or a tad more, and to the first time visitor from any European economy it will still seem very cheap here………….. this can be the only explanation for the increase in prices, but it is not a justification, because food prices have stabilized here, and an overproduction has seen the price of most vegetables fall, so if the rupee recovers to the levels of a year or so ago, it will no longer have the same appeal to long-stay visitors, many of which that I have spoken to are already eying up alternative destinations for next winter……….

 

……..and finally, the Russians are here; having been mostly restricting themselves to the north of Goa for many years, with the exception of a few in the exclusive hotels in the south……….they are here en masse………..all over the beach in Benaulim and Varca……..loud, rude, obnoxious, obese, beer swilling, cigarette smoking, totally style-less and manner-less oiks………….oh, and they have brought their men with them……….

 

……..the beach shack owners and workers are welcoming them from behind a painted smile, and you cannot blame them, it is easy to understand the dynamic……….I go there for the day and spend a couple of hundred rupees on a salad and a bottle of water, the Russians arrive ordering lobsters, fish too big for the cook to lift, bottles of rum and anything else the they can shovel down their enormous necks………….they spend thousands of rupees every day, and although they are as yet, still incapable of saying please or thank you, they are understandably given sun-bed and table priority over anyone else…………….the Brits and other Europeans are complaining incessantly to each other every day, but the flood gates are open…………………….time to move on

 

I have enjoyed some great times in Goa, but I am pleased to have sold my apartment here and look forward to the next steps on this unravelling highway………….. I leave here on Monday evening for my flight back to Bangkok, via Mumbai, arriving in Bangkok on Tuesday morning, 10th February………..

 

Above and below ……….some things don’t change……….the beach in the early morning, fishing nets strung out to dry in the sun

 

Above and below………..the beach cleaners at work

 

At Zumbri  beach shack…………………

Wonderful pomegranates now in season………..3 for100 rupees (£1.00)…….it usually takes me about 10 minutes to eat one, but time is not my enemy, don’t you know……….and you need to be very careful with any juice spillage, it is indelible, as one of my beach towels can now bear testament to………………

Back In Goa……………..(again) (^∆^)

I have been back in Goa for twelve days now after the torturous journey from Bangkok via Mumbai………

Back in India, this wonderfully colourful and vibrant land; this land where Sellotape does not stick and toilet paper can be torn anywhere apart from along the perforations……….

………..this land where internet connection has more variable speed limits that the M25, where cows and water-buffalo have right of way over traffic and where the mighty Rupee tramples all ideologies underfoot, leaving any sense of altruism almost exclusively in the hands of visiting tourists and travellers…………….Welcome back to India !!

Posts to my blog will be limited here as a consequence of the intermittent or non existent internet connection, despite having uploaded my local dongle with 5 gigabytes of data for a month ……….unlike in Thailand where it is easy to find good speed, free wi-fi in most hotels, bars and restaurants……………

 

Above and below………..sunset on my first evening back in Goa………..observed from Johncy’s beachside restaurant, which I know is a favourite of Nick & Tree……..and I believe that Mal and Linda also enjoyed a few good meals there

My first breakfast back in Goa…………papaya salad with freshly squeezes lime juice and a banana lassi…………….who needs a bacon and tomato “Reg Varney”

And on my way to the beach that morning, my first Kingfisher sighting of this winter ……….perched high  on the bough of a tree, basking in the early morning sunlight, contemplating his next fishing expedition……………

Early morning on the beach at Benaulim…………its vast expanse of sand being incrementally exposed as the tide of the Arabian sea retreats towards its ebb…………