There was some confusion about what courses I was to take whilst at Uni in India ( despite this being pre-approved before we left). So when I was ushered into my first class of ‘simulation teaching’ ( teaching your peers who act as the students) and it was all in Hindi, I began to panic. Then when one of my peers acting as the teacher began to abuse me in Hindi for not paying attention, my panic turned into frustration. A full day of heated discussions with the Dean and Head of Department it was finally decided that I should only be required to attend the classes for which I will be credited for back in Australia (Oh, and these will be mostly in English). They also mentioned that these classes wouldn’t start for another three weeks, so slightly frustrated but trying to remain positive we booked a flight to the sunny south, Goa.
We pulled into Agonda beach at 11pm on Saturday and our first impressions as we defrosted in the warmth were how clean the state of Goa looked compared to Delhi and Punjab. The follow morning I am apprehensive about checking out the beach opposite our little hut for fear of disappointment but I am pleasantly surprised when I find clean water and a litter free stretch of sand. After a swim and stroll down the long red-sand road lined with markets I am in love with Goa – Or at least with Agonda beach. I am also happy to discover the many Yoga and Meditation studios and classes that adorn the roads. A class costs around two dollars each.
In the afternoon we are both highly amused when a herd of twenty or so cows come wandering down the beach for a stroll along the shoreline. There doesn’t seem to be anyone herding them and it must be a daily ritual because no one else takes even the slightest bit of notice. I am not surprised to hear later that day that “Goa is not the real India’ from a Goan local. It is clean and quiet and the locals speak English. Despite all the Indian traditions still apparent, it is a tourist town full of English and Israeli hippies. But, I don’t care how un-Indian it is, it is a far cry from the chill and filth which is Punjab and is a welcome relief.