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James View Drop Down
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  Quote James Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Hello again
    Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 13:51
Had to cut my travels short due to my friend's mum being diagnosed with terminal cancer. The last two weeks were a nightmare but we all made it back on Tuesday in one piece after a 27 hour journey with multiple stops. Two months in Goa was as far as we got -- before we left, her mum was in remission so getting that news was like a punch in the gut.

I've spent the last two days attempting to catch up with all the things but I keep waking up disorientated. This morning it took me a few seconds to realise what the hell I was doing waking up in my own bedroom. Now I'm right back in amongst it with my sister being sent to hospital this morning; I'm looking after my sick nephew because my parents are away. OH WELL, I've been saying I needed a bit of reality back in my life and the universe must have been listening because I've been skelped in the face with it.

Having said that, I had the absolute time of my life despite a few issues here and there (my first taste of India was a customs woman trying to bribe me at the airport to let me bring duty-free cigs through -- once I started getting vocal she got off her mark). Two months of being a beach bum, parties, the best New Year of my entire life and not having to deal with Christmas at ALL has done me the world of good. We were living in a brand new apartment in the middle of a shanty town that seems to be under development going by the amount of building work going on around us (I got a two week chest infection from all the dust -- didn't stop me). Seeing how little even the better off people have has really given me a whole new perspective.

Funny-ish story: I decided to have a full body massage one day since my bed was so hard but the GOOD masseuse was home visiting family so, against some very good advice due to desperation from an aching back, I went with a guy who looked like Super Mario. I was told he'd torture me but I thought "Fk it, how bad can it be?". So I stripped down to my boxers and lay down in the tent thing, he was a bit rough for my liking but I put that down to my back being so tight and sore. Next thing I know, his hands are down my boxers pulling my cheeks apart. Now, I'm no expert on pressure points and I'd had a few Honey Bee & Red Bulls by this point so I decided to go with it. Fingers everywhere. EVERYWHERE. I decided that was enough and told him my back was fine so as I sat up then got pushed onto my back as he fired some more coconut oil on me. His hands didn't go down the front of my boxers thankfully but he did take the liberty of blatantly tweaking my nipples. Four times. As this was happening he offered me "room service for good price". By then I'd sobered up a little and was out of there like a shot but after telling everyone what had happened and with him looking like Super Mario, I acquired the nickname Princess Peach. It took a few weeks for that to change to Mr Bean after the injuries I caused myself trotting about in flip flops. Always to my left foot for some reason but thankfully they missed that golden opportunity for a more offensive nickname!

I also discovered a talent for hacking padlocks off with a machete but ONLY when drunk. The guys next door lost their key a couple of times and were in too much of a state to do much about it so it was left to me to rescue them. When MY turn came, I was sober and couldn't manage it. Go figure.

Anyway, back to the usual -- how much CBB and DOI have I missed and is it worth playing catch up? Is CBB even still on? Is Scotland still in the UK or am I now a foreigner? I'm becoming overwhelmed at the realisation of how out of touch I've been and the BBC World News is NO help whatsoever at helping keeping up with things in the UK. Don't even get me started on Indian wi-fi.

It's nice to be back, even if I've been freezing for the past three days.
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  Quote Jo Bird Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 14:01
Welcome home. You've haven't missed very much.

Scotland is still part of the UK. Thank goodness.
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  Quote James Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 14:11
Thanks Jo. I'm glad we're still in the UK, every time I see that fat little toad Salmond on TV I change the channel. I'm all for being proud of one's own country but I've no time for rabid Nationalists.
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 15:01
This is so spooky James.  I was only thinking about you last evening as I was washing up and that we hadn't seen you around for some time. Glad to see  you back in the fold love. Are you flood free? We are on a hill so no floods but the gales have  been awful. Our garden fence is matchwood and we have red 'crash barriers'  all around us courtesy of the council. Our lawn is sodden and today I saw next door's cats for the first time since Christmas.
Loved the massage story. My husband an ex sailor had a good laugh too.
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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 15:07
Sounds like you've missed nothing here (believe me I'd like to miss Xmas every year, just sit in stuff your face, and drink yourself stupid here, I'd rather be on a beach anyday!!)
 
Wow, close encounters of another kind then in Goa!! with the masseuse!!
I had a similar (not as bad) experience in Singapore a few years ago (and i'm much older than you should know better!!) at the airport had about 7 hours to kill, with a bit of a headache asked for a head and shoulder massage, !!!---Got a full body one, ok, so was with a good looking guy about my age too, so not too bad, but a bit of a surprise!! (and I was sober so no excuse!!) but lets say was nowhere near as intimate as yours!!!- maybe something got lost in translation???WinkLOL
 
Scotland still with us, I for one would not be sad to see it go, (it's behaving like a naughty child !, have to let it go) the oil will run out soon, then Scotland will come crawling back imo!!!!!!!  They don't even have a football team anyway.
 
At least you are (both/all) back safe and sound from your travels, shame you didn't get any further tho, but understandable in the circumstance, maybe it wasn't meant to be this time, and saved you from a worst fate than the massage!!!!


Edited by deborah31 - 07 Feb 2014 at 15:14
Loose Lips, Sink Ships !!   or as they say in Jamaice, 'Mouth open, Story fly out!'
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 17:57
No don't agree Deb. I as a taffy would be sorry to see Scotland go. Their engineers built our Empire, their doctors are the best in the world. Train at Edinburgh med school and you can get a job anywhere. They have fought, and suffered heavy losses for the British Isles in wars, and have some of the most spectacular scenery in Europe. Not only that, they are great  people. I don't blame them feeling at the end of their tether with England, like our coal, England  commandeered the oil . Not forgetting what Thatcher did to them
I hope they stay with us, but can understand if they don't
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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 19:36
having a psycopath psychotic scottish neighbour, that terrorises his wife has done it for me, she tells me it's because he's scottish, and raised on an Island????!!!!!!
I have told him  to sling his hook and head for the high road!!!!!Wink (in less polite terms)
and my other neighbour have told her to divorce him! We (all neighbours) give him/them a wide berth. At least her kids moved out (to their real dad). Which mother puts her daughters before her 2nd husband??
My husband's so glad to be out of Aberdeen now too, mind you most Scottish people are too!
As they say about Edmonton (in Alberta) best thing about it, road out to Calgary!! (or in our case  , road out to England!!)


Edited by deborah31 - 07 Feb 2014 at 19:42
Loose Lips, Sink Ships !!   or as they say in Jamaice, 'Mouth open, Story fly out!'
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  Quote James Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Feb 2014 at 02:21
Originally posted by Toots

This is so spooky James.  I was only thinking about you last evening as I was washing up and that we hadn't seen you around for some time. Glad to see  you back in the fold love. Are you flood free? We are on a hill so no floods but the gales have  been awful. Our garden fence is matchwood and we have red 'crash barriers'  all around us courtesy of the council. Our lawn is sodden and today I saw next door's cats for the first time since Christmas.Loved the massage story. My husband an ex sailor had a good laugh too.


Thanks Toots! No floods here -- I live near one of the highest points in the city so we're never bothered with those but when it gets icy or snowy, it's difficult to get around with it all being hills. I only saw rain for the first time in two months on the drive back from Manchester on Tuesday and spotted a couple of flooded areas in the north west. Bright sunshine and 30-34°c temperatures every day. The very worst weather we had was some very light cloud cover for a couple of days following a typhoon somewhere else in Asia (according to my landlady); those were some of my time out, stay home, wash my clothes and gut the apartment days. My landlady seemed to think a quick sweep with a palm frond broom constituted actual cleaning so a quick trip to the supermarket for Dettol, bleach, Mr Muscle and various absorbent pads and scourers was necessary. From that point on I took care of the cleaning. If I'd been there any longer, there might have been a campaign for mozzie coil manufacturers to sell them pre-separated because they're so brittle it became the bane of my life.

I managed to avoid the Delhi belly that did the rounds through the rest of the group but did spend a couple of days in bed with severe stomach cramps. We'd all gone out for a lovely meal then straight to the main strip to take advantage of the two for one cocktails -- mojitos are my favourite so I had quite a few then moved on elsewhere but before long I was being violently sick. The following day I couldn't eat but put it down to a hangover and (stupidly) decided more alcohol was the only way to deal with it. The next day, the rest of the group went south to Palolem but I stayed behind since I still felt ill and once they were all gone, the cramps started. It was so bad I couldn't even make it next door to ask the guys to go on a mercy mission for me and I got a little bit frightened since I was on my tod but on the third day I made it to the pharmacy, got given strips of pills to take and was right as rain within 24 hours. On my last night out before leaving, I had more of the same mojitos but was sober enough to notice the brown tinge to them. Anyway, I took my chances and lo and behold, I was throwing up within half an hour so that was that mystery solved. If anyone reading this is ever in Cape Town Cafe in Baga, don't drink the now renamed fauxjitos. Even when I make my own using brown sugar syrup they're still clear when I'm done so I've no idea what the hell they were using.

We took a trip to the Dudhsaghar falls one day, had a dip in the freezing cold pool then fed the monkeys with fruit we snuck in in the guide's glove compartment. Didn't bother with the elephant ride and wash -- I'd heard enough about turds in the water and the thought of that plus elephant snot being scooshed over me didn't really appeal.

I tried barracuda one night for dinner but it was served up with the head, skin and tail still on. I still scoffed it but the amount of bones in it was ridiculous. Baby shark was FAR nicer -- very meaty and tasted like improved, juicier chicken. On the last night, the owners of the shack we frequented could see how upset we were (I had a bit of quiet cry at a corner table, didn't think I was being obvious but my heaving shoulders gave the game away) so they decided to cook dinner for us and told us all drinks were on the house. The meal turned out to the best of the lot - BBQ prawns and fish, beautiful fragrant rice, beef, chicken and potato curries and the ubiquitous chips. Everyone in the shack got a little pissed and it turned into a bit of a farewell party and in the middle of that, some Indian kids set up a tightrope on the beach and did some fire walking then someone else set off a load of fireworks -- nothing to do with us but it was the perfect ending to everything.

So I'm now trying to figure out what to do next. The most likely scenario is get a job, work like a dog and save as much money as possible so I can go back next season and do it all again without cutting into too much of what's left of my redundancy cash. It's not an exaggeration to say it was probably the happiest time of my life. I wouldn't say Goa's a spiritual place but it has such a positive effect on everyone who goes. I did have a few serious issues with certain people that I've sadly had to cut out of my life but even that couldn't detract from the pure elation I felt while I was there.

I'll shut up now because I can see I'm gushing a bit but if you need a bit of joy in your life, Goa is the place to be. And now I'm off to bed.
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  Quote MargiABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Feb 2014 at 07:54
Welcome back James. How long were you away? Once the travel bug hits you start planning for the next one.
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Feb 2014 at 09:08
Ohhh Yes James!  I well remember Ghandi's revenge. It hit me in Mumbai. Goa is beautiful isn't it? If you ever get the chance before you settle down though, try Africa. It is a mystical and magical continent.  But be warned, no one ever visits it once. It has a way of calling you back.
My husband and I were lucky to travel a lot in our jobs He was in the Merchant Navy and has been around the world 3 times and round the Horn when the seas have been mountainous and also when calm as a mill pond. I was a nurse. We have no regrets now we are  creaky pensionersTongue We did it all when we were young.
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  Quote James Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Feb 2014 at 08:11
We got exactly two months in Goa before having to come back, Margi. There were some issues before we heard about my friend's mum but after that, everything fell apart. Long story but all my feelings about the whole time are good ones.

Goa is gorgeous, Toots. I loved walking along the beach from where we stayed in Calangute, along to Baga and across the the river onto the massive rock that separates Baga from Anjuna.

We saw what we assume were UFOs on a couple of nights too -- these non-moving bright white lights in the sky in the direction of Anjuna but just over the sea. They'd flicker in and out then disappear altogether and then there'd be what were like camera flashes if the flash was red. Then it would all stop. This happened on two separate nights; I knew there were no buildings tall enough for lasers or reflections to bounce off and I checked with locals who said the same thing. Definitely not planes either - I live right under one of the flight paths to Glasgow airport and I get how people can mistake them for something else when they're flying directly towards you. First (possible) UFO experience.

Africa -- eeek! I'm not good with animals that have more than 4 legs so I don't know how I'd cope. Two friends have been -- one to Ghana and one to Gambia. I've heard stories of stews with chicken feet hanging out and what appeared to be a rat tail (along with the rat) in another! If I went there I'd need to go with someone who's had more experience than my friends tbh, they're as daft as me.

I got friendly with some older couples (50s/60s) who'd been going to Goa for 20-odd years, one couple are there for 14 months this time so if I needed to know anything, they were my go-to guys. I'm planning on going back for New Year this year and doing 3 or 4 weeks, just a holiday. I felt really guilty about not being home for Christmas so this year I will be.
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Feb 2014 at 08:26
The big cities in Africa are no different to ours James.Going bush though (as Ozzies say) is a bit basic and definitely only to be done when young.
Yes, Goa is beautiful isn't it?
South Africa used to be lovely, particularly Durban but wouldn't like to recommend it now.
Rio in S. America is a place for the young, I've never been to better parties. Life used to be one long party
I'm not a big fan of China, but have only be there picking up patients, not a holiday. Having said that, walking along the Great wall is a mystical experience.
Travel while you are young James, do everything you want to before you have responsibilities  and commitments and that way, when you are older you will have no regrets. 
Inside every elderly person there is a young person wondering what the hell happened
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  Quote Kevin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2014 at 15:09
Super Mario & Princess Peach!! This is why I f*cking love you James <3
OH NO SHE DI'NT
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  Quote James Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2014 at 17:31
Originally posted by Toots

The big cities in Africa are no different to ours James.Going bush though (as Ozzies say) is a bit basic and definitely only to be done when young.Yes, Goa is beautiful isn't it? South Africa used to be lovely, particularly Durban but wouldn't like to recommend it now.Rio in S. America is a place for the young, I've never been to better parties. Life used to be one long partyI'm not a big fan of China, but have only be there picking up patients, not a holiday. Having said that, walking along the Great wall is a mystical experience.Travel while you are young James, do everything you want to before you have responsibilities  and commitments and that way, when you are older you will have no regrets. 


I'm fully planning on going to more places as soon as I can, there's nothing like the feeling of pure freedom to do whatever I want, when I want (so North Korea is off the menu). I wanted to go to Rio for Carnivale in Feb but things didn't work out that way, sadly. I might just get a job and save as much as I can do Goa again (that is a MUST) and figure out how to get to Rio from India! Job first though, I'm living on what's left of my redundancy money so I better sort myself out quick on that score!
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  Quote James Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2014 at 17:32
Originally posted by Kevin

Super Mario & Princess Peach!! This is why I f*cking love you James <3


I LOVE YOU TOO <3

If you want to be my Super Mario I won't run away if you try to feel me up and I'll give you 500 rupees instead of the usual 400 xx
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  Quote Kevin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2014 at 17:46
Originally posted by James

Originally posted by Kevin

Super Mario & Princess Peach!! This is why I f*cking love you James <3


I LOVE YOU TOO <3

If you want to be my Super Mario I won't run away if you try to feel me up and I'll give you 500 rupees instead of the usual 400 xx


I'll definitely be Mario...



Edited by Kevin - 25 Feb 2014 at 17:46
OH NO SHE DI'NT
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