After a sort of sleep in, we returned to Colva Beach for food at Bambooze Restaurant – delicious pancakes, fruit juices, café latte (yes!) eggs on toast and Spanish omelette.
Unfortunately, we were woken early to our hotel rocking – the foreign neighbours next door were still partying on their balcony with loud music in the morning!
We caught a taxi to the beach and got ourselves six wooden reclining beach chairs (instead of the beach) for the simple fact of receiving less harassment from the Indians (selfies and staring) up on the chairs. It seems that there is a border between Indian nationals who populate the beach area and water, and the shack area with their reclining chairs set up just metres away. We celebrated the first day of the 2017 with some cold Kingfisher beers and casually people-watched while relaxing from a late night out.
Steve and Dacey were game and went for a swim in the Arabian Sea to cool off.
We returned to the Goan Courtyard Hotel to rest as we (Steve and me) decided to have a date night out at Colva – beach side table, calamari and beers, no kids!
We met two young Indian men seated at the table beside us on the beach – Ameet who is a call centre worker and Pradas who is a Police Officer in Maharashtra State. We got talking to them across the beach side tables about where we were from and where we’ve been travelling, and then we moved over to their table so we could talk more. We stayed there for a few hours drinking beers (them) and gin (me) anything regarding politics, family, culture, and girls!
We left there a teeny bit tipsy, but completely full of stories and information about being an Indian in this day and age. Both Ameet and Pradas were honest and open at sharing the way they were brought up and how they navigate the world of India today as young men. They had both had girlfriends, but they would still participate in the family system of arranged marriages due to family pressure. We shared about having four daughters, something that is still seem as a stigma in most of this country, and after our chat with them they thanked us saying they had learnt much about how we view gender equality and why it’s important to fight for it and to not treat girls and boys different from each other. We are all human after all. But we also realise that the enormity of cultural tradition and expectation is still grounded in family’s perception of how life should be, and unfortunately women are the centre of a family’s honour and its dishonour in too many of them.
We walked along the quiet, vacated New Year’s Day Colva Beach under the glowing wonder of the moon, jumped into a tuk tuk (so nice to be able to catch a tuk tuk for two) home to the Goan Courtyard Hotel (amazingly this tuk tuk driver knew where he was going!) and be reunited with the kids (who were still up watching DVDs in the room having a lovely time without us).