eating sushi in india :: day 27 :: beach day

I’m trying to make the most of my last few beach days before heading home. Part of me feels like I should hop in a taxi and go see some sights, but when I’m on a tropical beach any time spent away from it feels like a waste. When I beach, I beach hard.

Today was a little yoga, breakfast (coffee and granola - I try to pick a new thing each morning), a few walks along the beach, my daily mini-bottle of Coke, and a little swimming (okay, less swimming or more like letting the waves knock me over) in the sea. I also took a bunch of photos today - this is one of my favorites.

People watching at sunset on Ashwem Beach :: January 27 2019

People watching at sunset on Ashwem Beach :: January 27 2019

I’m staying at the Yab Yum Resort. (Say that without giggling, right?) Here’s a quick look at what my beach jungle hut looks like.

eating sushi in india :: day 25 :: conversations with Goa's beach vendors

When I told people I was headed to Goa, they gave me one of two reactions - either a wrinkled nose, suggesting that it wasn’t a very adventurous choice or raised eyebrows, with the warning “It’s relentless the people trying to get you to buy something on the beach. Good luck.”

Today was my first full day here and I headed out for some beach time. (Look, it’s not everyday you can say, “Today I woke up and dipped my toe into the Arabian Sea for the first time in my life.” The beach was happening). And, as predicted, I was approached by at least a dozen different people (I lost count after awhile) trying to sell me all sorts of things - beads, scarves, coconuts, snacks, and towels. I made the rookie mistake of being polite to the first one - so much so that the resort staff had to come over and, presumably, tell her to fuck off. (I couldn’t understand what he was saying - I’m just guessing that was the gist of the conversation.)

After that first one, though, I got the hang of not looking up from my book, keeping my sunglasses on, and generally not engaging with them. However, some were persistent and it was really hard to keep a straight face and not giggle at the attempts to engage me in conversation. Here are some of the gems:

Most started out by noticing my stellar use of sunblock and hats:

“Hi, ma’am. How are you? Your first day here? Where are you from? UK? Russia? You’re very…very white.”

Some took a look at my bare, unpedicured feet and decided there was clearly a sales opportunity there:

“Hi, ma’am. Do you want a manicure? Pedicure? (I shook my head no.) No pedicure? You sure? How about. pedicure? I massage your feed and paint your toes a pretty color.” This particular woman repeated the offer not once, not twice, but THREE times, as if I’d been going through life not knowing what a pedicure was. To be fair, my feet are looking plain and maybe a bit rough, fine, but I didn’t think there were gruesome. I mean, they’re not so bad that my sisters would take one look at them, hand me $30 and politely tell me to just get a goddamn pedicure already.

The best sales pitch of the day, hands down, goes to the lady who tried to sell me on her threading services.

“Hi, ma’am. (Taking a look at my legs.) I do threading. Do you know threading? Hair doesn’t grow back for weeks. Very good. You need. She pointed to my legs. I didn’t look up. She kept going and tried to seal the deal by motioning to her chin, as if she was stroking a beard. I can thread here, too. Yes?

Shut the front door, I thought. Did she just call me out on having some chin ZINGERS? Great. Awesome.

You know what a ZINGER is. They are those random, wonky single hairs that pop up in unexpected places, like the shoulder or chin, or that one weird corkscrew curl in sea of otherwise normal eyebrow hairs.

And no matter what the person desperately wanted me to buy, the offer always ended the same way.

“Okay, ma’am. Later then. We talk later.”

I have a feeling they won’t be back, but if they return, I’ll be braiding the hair on my pasty white legs and stroking my beard when they see me.

eating sushi in india :: day 23 :: last day in Mysore

A photo from my first full day in Mysore :: shopping at the Devaraja Market on January 1, 2019

A photo from my first full day in Mysore :: shopping at the Devaraja Market on January 1, 2019

What does a yoga dropout like me do on the last day? Sleep in and skip practice, that’s what. It wasn’t intentional. My plan was to go, to finish on a high note, but after getting a phone call at 3am I was awake for a bit and by the time 4:30 am rolled around, I knew I was still quite tired and probably not in the best shape to get up and wait for over an hour in that queue one last time.

The rest of the day was a low key. Since tomorrow is will likely be a pretty long travel day - 12 hours, thereabouts - this was probably for the best. I started the day having coffee in the new outdoor lounge at Anokhi Garden, catching up on things like backing up my photos, posting videos to YouTube and updating my Instagram stories. I didn’t blog every day like I’d thought, but I did get into the habit of creating daily stories, which I’ve been enjoying doing. Later I bought a pair of harem pants (for the beach, I told myself), dropped off the books I’d finished at Depth ‘n Green and had one last double Americano (my favorite), and then packed up everything I brought and bought.

Some of the books I read while traveling and am leaving behind in Mysore. I haven’t enjoyed reading this much in literally  years . Feels good to get back in the habit.

Some of the books I read while traveling and am leaving behind in Mysore. I haven’t enjoyed reading this much in literally years. Feels good to get back in the habit.

Werner (the owner) and Hannah (one of the guests staying here, a really lovely woman from the UK) both enjoy practicing with Vinay at Prana Vashya Yoga. Hannah is doing the intensive, with practice sessions in the morning and evening. The evening focuses on backbending; the morning looks to be similar to the Ashtanga primary series, but seems to be modified for each student based on their needs. Werner practices there often and likes all of the instructors. Hannah also has nothing but good things to say about the intensive she’s doing - the classes aren’t at all overcrowded, she’s received plenty of individual guidance from the teachers, and she’s been quite happy with the program overall. If I were to come back for the yoga that’s one I might look into.

The day ended Zen Kitchen, with Werner and Lea from Switzerland. Tonight we swapped stories about concerts - our first concert, favorite concerts - and music we enjoy listening to today.

Tomorrow? Goa!