Goa – my dream Vacation

After years of waiting and trying, I finally had a chance to visit Goa – a dream destination. I wanted to share the few pictures I clicked during the trip ( I was too busy being lazy to click photos on this perfect vacation) but I also wanted to remember all of it in detail. So I am sharing my day by day trip details. ( You can skip reading and just click the pictures to enlarge them if you want) 😉

We began our journey from Hyderabad via road. Unfortunately, we choose to travel by the Mumbai highway. Our route was Hyderabad-Zaheerabad-Gurbalga-Bijapur-Bagalkot-Belgaum-Goa. Most of the Mumbai highway was potholes with a foot of ROAD here and there, so our average speed was 10Km/hrs. But once we got off that road, the rest was a breeze. The route was mostly a single road, but the road condition was good. However there were a lot of speedbreakers, so you couldn’t go too fast for too long.

We took a break at Bijapur and did a little bit of site seeing before starting for Goa the next day. We started with the GOL GUMBAZ. Probably Gol Gumbaz is the second largest tomb in the world. It has a diameter of 40 meter and huge halls. One of the characteristic features of the tomb is that its dome stands without any support from a pillar. Another attraction of the monument is the “Whispering Gallery”, where even a single whisper is increased 10 times and is echoed innumerable times on the other side of the mausoleum due to the acoustics of the space.

gol gumbak

Next was Shivagiri. Lord Shiva Statue is an 85 feet tall Shiva Statue that has been installed by the T.K. Patil Banakatti Charitable Trust in Bijapur at Shivapur on Sindagi Road. It is slowly making as a pilgrimage location. 1,500 tonnes statue of Lord Shiva is considered as the second largest statue of Lord Shiva in India.


I was surprised that Belgaum doesn’t have any KFC, PizzaHut, Mc Donald. But the Biryani at Hotel Charminar (or any of its outlets) is a good bet. We took the Ghat road to Goa from Belgaum which was a delight. The inpronto waterfalls created by the slight rain added to the scenic beauty. Towards the end of this road, the road was not that great but we got to Goa and I was delighted.


We were staying at Calangute. We checked in and slept like a log! We spent the next day at the beach and needless to say got sunburnt. We were happy nevertheless and the kids enjoyed the water. We even got to see a real WILD CRAB on the beach. It was a little shy so I couldn’t get any pictures to share.
We had dinner at Capricorn Bar and Restaurant Calangute. The food was good and the ambience too…


The next day we had lunch at Chef Soumyen’s Kitchen. The experience was great and the food was lovely too.


We then headed to Panjim only to miss a turn and reach Fort Aguada. Fort Aguada and its lighthouse is a well-preserved seventeenth-century Portuguese fort standing in Goa, India, on Sinquerim Beach, overlooking the Arabian Sea. We also visited the Aguada jail which has a lovely view of the sea.
We finally reached Panjim and visited the Se Cathedral Complex.


We enjoyed light snacks in the evening at Nescafe next to the Panaji Residency before heading towards the statue of Abbe.


We visited the Mahalakshmi temple and headed back for Calangute. On our way we visited the Shree Rudresh Temple and the Mae De Deus Church. We had a great time at Under the stars and the kids pestered us to go there again the next day. I have never been huge on experimenting but out there I did not mind. I trusted the chef and just asked him to surprise me. We got fish and a dessert made of coconut. I dislike both these items but when I tasted them, I could not even taste the coconut or the fish. It was just so TASTY. The kids got a bonus of crispy chicken with homestyle fries. Needless to say, they loved it!


The next morning saw us at the beach again. We woke up at 6AM and enjoyed the beach till 7:30 before heading to the hotel for a much needed breakfast. Nia collected shells and after taking a bath and some breakfast we dozed off again. In the evening we headed out to the Arambol beach which has very soft but dark sand. I got a foot massage at the beach where the local ladies try to sell junk jewelry and wrap around skirts to all tourists. After it got dark we came back to freshen up and headed to the Calangute towers for dinner.


Our last night in Goa was at Hyaat, Bambolin beach. We visited Dona Paula before checking into the hotel.


We loved the property. The pool was amazing with a separate kids area. We swam, and lazed around the pool ordering snacks instead of a proper lunch just so we could stay at the pool a little longer. We then headed to the beach. To Nia’s delight it was full of sea shells and she collected a lot of them. We headed back when it started raining.



The kids enjoyed themselves at the Camp Kids area while I got ready for dinner. After dinner we strolled in the hotel lawn and enjoyed the roar of the sea.


We had a bay view room with a fantastic view that tempted us to sit in the veranda for longer than what I had planned. The next morning we woke up early to stroll on the beach and slept off again. We woke up for breakfast and then checked out of the hotel to head back home.


A 12 hour drive got us back to Hyderabad. We took the Goa-Belgaum-Bijapur-Gulbarga-Sedam-Pargi-ORR-Hyd route and the road was is good condition.  Goa- a dream come true but it is good to be back home!


The meaning of various flowers

I read this somewhere:

There is a traditional meaning attached to each flower, that stands with their own significance and importance.

Acacia = Friendship
Agapanthus = Secret Love
Amaryllis = Pride, Timidity, Splendid Beauty
Anemone = Forsaken
Aster = Afterthought
Azalea = First love, Temperance
Belles of Ireland = Good Luck
Bouvardia = Enthusiasm
Buttercup = Childishness
Caladium = Great joy and delight
Calla = Magnificent beauty
Camellia, Red = Unpretending excellence
Camellia, White = Perfected loveliness
Carnation, Red = Alas poor heart
Carnation, Pink = I’ll never forget you
Carnation, Purple = Capriciousness
Carnation, Striped = Sorry I can’t be with you
Carnation, White = Innocence
Carnation, Yellow = Disdain
Chrysanthemum, Red = Love
Chrysanthemum, White = Truth
Chrysanthemum, Yellow = Slighted love
Crocus = Youthful gladness
Daffodil = Regard, You are the only one
Daisy = Innocence
Dandelion = Rustic oracle
Fern = Fascination
Fleur-de-Lis = Flame: I burn
Forget-Me-Not = True love
Freesia = Innocence
Galax = Encouragement
Gardenia = You are lovely
Gladiolus = Strength of character
Lilac, Purple = First emotion of life
Lilac, White = Youthful innocence
Lily, Orange = Wealth
Lily, White = Sweetness
Lily, Yellow = Gaiety, walking on air
Lily of the Valley = Return of happiness
Lotus Flower = Estranged love
Magnolia = Love of nature
Marigold = Grief
Myrtle = Home, love
Narcissus = Egotism
Orangeblossom = Purity
Orchid = A belle
Pansy = Thoughts
Peony = Bashfulness
Queen Anne’s Lace = Haven
Rose = Love
Rose, Burgundy = Unconscious love
Rose, Deep Red = Bashful
Rose, Pink = Perfect happiness
Rose, White = I am worthy of you
Rose, Yellow = Decrease of love, Jealousy
Rose, Red & White together = Unity
Snapdragon = Presumption
Statice = Remembrance
Stephanotis = Happiness in marriage
Stock = Lasting beauty
Tulip = Fame
Tulip, Red = Declaration of love
Wall-Flower = Fidelity in adversity
Wax Flower = Riches
Yarrow = Healing

It made me think of the garland we had for our marriage:

It was Rose, Deep Red = Bashful and….

wait for it …



Marigold = Grief !!!!

Ha ha ha… I have never laughed so much …

Ok on a serious note… it wasn’t marigold… but don’t they usually show a marigold garland for marriages????

and hey … if u are about to get married… take care 😉
download (1)

I think Stephanotis is a good bet! (refer below)


Equality of the sexes… really?

I read an article that triggered my chain of thought….
let me first share the link :

Agree with some points and disagree with many…

First the disagreement :

I would love to tell my daughter that she is equal to a boy, That she can do whatever she wants and be whatever she likes, that she need not be afraid of anyone…. BUT the society we live in … I will be setting my daughter up for danger. Lets face it, we live in a society where females have to be careful… of everything and everyone. I always wanted to have a son… even when I was a small child… cause I felt that boys had all the fun… I was told to be careful and i WAS told about the dangers, and it did me good.

Girls may be achieving much more than boys, may be better at taking care of her family, but she is NOT YET EQUAL to boys… she has to be careful, and imposing some restrictions on her will help her in the long run.

What i Agree with :

If something does go wrong, then there is no way that the victim can be blamed. Victim blaming and shaming is just not done.

We wish for a society where our daughters can roam free and safe even at night, but that society is still a distant dream. So lets tell them to be careful while they follow their dreams, lets warn them of the dangers but be there for them should they fall.

I miss the days when it was about…..

stolen glances over computer tops,

deciding how best to speak,

heart racing when you approached,

sly smiles,

eye contact that lasted just a minute too long,

secret smiles at a joke only you two uderstood,

the slight brush of elbow while watching a movie,

noting each reaction to see what made her laugh at the movie,

going to a cafe for her to have coffee,

staying awake for 20 hours a day so you can spend those extra 2 hours together,

Morning maggie,

fingers tingling when you held hands,

Dreamy eyes watching life with rose tinted glasses,

listening to songs and feeling they were written for you,

bike rides in the rain when you could have taken the car,

… the thrills and innocence of youth

Joint family – A game of chess?

I recently had a chance to play chess and it made me think that playing chess is a must if you want to live in a joint family. Why? Well here are my reasons:

1. It teaches you to think ahead. You MUST think of what step you can safely take and what the other may do next.

2. It shows you to recognise and move within your limitations. EG : The elephant can not move diagonally and the Sipahi can only cut diagonally.

3. Always keep a strong front and do not move all your “Sipahies”

4. Sometimes to keep yourself safe, it is important to take a step back.

5. If you don’t think ahead, you can be beaten up and out of the game in a matter of minutes.

6. The King can be brought down even by a small Sipahi.

and last but not the least … The queen is all powerful 😉

Feel free to add your own thoughts and similarities….


PS: I thought that may be it is not just joint family but all relationships.. but a part of me still wants to believe that there are some relations that need not be as complicated as chess….

Should I just let him be?

We have been trying to get Akul to sleep in his own bed rather than with me. We put him in his bed and he explores it excitedly for a few minutes… Then he looks at me and comes rushing to his comfort zone and cuddled with me to sleep…

I try to be stern with him and firmly put him back in his own bed and instantly feel guilty about it…. Here is a one year old who needs me to feel secure and comfortable… after another two- three years he will be refusing to be hugged. And here I am trying to make him “Independent”. Should I let him be and enjoy this one year old’s sloppy kisses and give in to his demands of being held and carried around and cuddled to sleep?

Why is it that we are always in a hurry for things to happen… When you come to know that you are having a baby, you just want it in your arms… the nine month wait feels like a total waste…. we forget to enjoy those moments and keep waiting for it to be born… The day it is born, we wait for it to grow just a bit so it can hold up his head… then sit, and stand and then walk…. Along comes the speech… and you keep trying to get him to say ma-ma, pa-pa, da-da, na-na…. what about enjoying this time when he is not saying anything and still expressing himself through his actions? Why are we in a hurry to make him learn colours or solve puzzles or write? Why are we always trying to run in a rat-race where every one year old seems like a competitor to your child…

why can we not let them be and let them learn things at their own pace… let him enjoy crawling before he wants to walk… let him babble before he learns to talk… let him cuddle with me and sleep before he wants to be left alone in his own room…

It is the journey that counts….

For quite some time I have believed that ” Winning is not important.. it is how you get there that matters”.  I have been trying to teach Nia the same thing for some time now too. I have been telling her that the journey is as important as the finish. That even if she doesn’t win or come first, as long as she enjoyed what she did, it is good.

But the competetive self in her doesn’t buy it. She sees the pleasure and the glory of a winner and strives to get there. No matter how much I tell her to enjoy something, her goal is to be a winner in it. It could be anything – dancing, singing, painting,  running or even collecting sweets at a carnival. I mean how does it matter if another child collected 2 sweets more than you? You have a basket full and the chances are you are not going to get to eat them anyway… But no.. she needs those two sweets  cause then she will have the max number… in short she becomes a winner!

I watched “ek mein aur ek tum” the other day and felt sorry for children who have parents like those of the guy – instead of celebrating the silver medal  they are rebuking him for not winning the Gold…. And then instead of letting him try further, they just put him into a new activity… Poor guy spends his entire life trying to please his parents n “WIN” them something…. Nia had a bit of that attitude too. If she thinks she can’t win it, she won’t even start it. By telling her again and again that winning is not EVERYTHING, I have been able to coax her into trying new things now.

But I do realise something. ” Winning is not important.. it is how you get there that matters” – this is something that you would say to someone who hasn’t won. It is more of a consolation line than really meeaning it. Won’t I like Nia to win everything she gets into??? Ofcourse i would. And how many times do you go to a winner and ask ” Did you enjoy it? cause the one who lost enjoyed it!” No – the winner is so busy enjoying winning that he doesn’t care if he enjoyed it…Even if he didn’t, he is making up for it now.  So would I like to teach her the same again??? ummm Noo.. I think what I would like to teach her is that Winning is important, but so is how you get there. If you put in your best efforts, enjoyed what you did, and still didn’t get to be the winner then it is ok. You should not STOP doing something just cause you can’t win it.  If you enjoy it, continue. If you can win something but don’t enjoy doing it, then what’s the point in doing it again?

God knows I am not the best dancer around.. but I love it too much to stop dancing. Even on a ” Bad- Back” day, I can still dance to my favorite song..  But I know I have the brains to solve dull Maths problems.. I can do it in my sleep.. but they are so boring to do that they make me wish I were asleep everytime I start solving them.  So .. my hope is that my kids can one day understand that Winning may be important, but it is not EVERYTHING!