India One More Time travel blog

Our Pebbles temporary place

A visitor on the wall behind Pebbles...as seen from our balcony

View from our balcony at Pebbles

"Butterflies on my window make me happy!" take off from John Denver,...

Bon at dinner...working the list, ha!

Little girl on bus with pack bigger than she!

At the dentist...Dr. Mangit Singh

A great Thali next door to dentist at Krishna Restaurant

Decorations for sale for Diwali

Rebuilding a temple at Calangute bus stop

Roadside seller of marigolds for making honoring garlands

Garlands in action at Krishna restaurant

Garlands in action on a bus


10/19

Bon is still not 'with it', i.e. can't seem to get moving in the morning (not much change really, ha), so I went to breakfast alone and met a UK - Indian MD who is visiting for a 50th anniversery of some medical group. We chatted a bit to find out that he has lived and practiced medicine in UK for past 40 years, was now here with his son, Neal (very Brittish, no accent) and I asked their opinion of Brixet...son in favor, dad against. They said this seems to be typical in UK, a pretty even split for and against...interesting.

In telling about our visits to India for medical (the UK doctor said treatments in UK are free which we all 'know' is not true but...), it got me into thinking about the irony of it! On the one hand, air or just plain travel in general, expends a huge amount of energy. However, when taken as a whole within our personal (Bon & my) economic situation, the bottom line still favors coming to India - this time not so much for me. I wonder at the total irrationality of this situation - the actual waste of resources due to an economic system which somehow values certain 'currencies' over others, irregardless of the sheer wastefulness of resoures both human and material.

In some way, this whole scenario must change radically. Medical care is just a tiny example...we ( Bon & I) are just fortunate to have the up front resources (monetary and knowledge) to be able to accomplish our ends and take advantage of the discrepancies in our world economic system. In the end, the sheer magnitude of these discrepancies will bring the whole system down. Climate change is a mere symptom of the much larger problem of imbalance...populationwise, resource distribution wise, total breakdown of the natural systems which have taken millions or more years to evolve!!

As always, the rickety buses here in Goa are always available but often take time to get from A to B. We are fortunate this day to get seats both to Mapusa and then onward to Anjuna, especially considering we've got our packs. We arrive in Anjuna by 1pm having left Calangute at 11am. We did not take long to get to Anjuna Plaza where we stayed last winter (actually, only 10 months ago)....Place was not open yet but Santos, the manager, told us he could have a room ready in 2 days but could stay in a different place, Pebbles, until then. We agreed on a price for staying 3 weeks (1200 r./night), and Joseph, the owner, had his son, Dalton the taxi driver, take us and our bags to Pebbles which is very near the flee market.

We settled in with the usual Indian difficulties...TV still not working and internet/wifi is intermittent but in all I feel comfortable having finally found a location to stay for next while.

10/21

Today we move to Anjuna Plaza, and hoping they've got our room set up ok. Last night they got the TV going but we were not into anything that was on...not even a movie. Did catch some BBC but fell asleep early...8pm.

Our move went smoothly since owner Joseph's son, Dalton, drove us over. We still had to wait a couple hours to actually move into the room and then no TV or hot water...they did say things would improve tomorrow.

10/22

Up early, too early for food in Anjuna (most places I think open after 9). By the time we got to Calangute at 9 am, things there were beginning to open. Had some breakfast, went to eye place where Bon is getting lenses made (said it would be mid-next week), and stopped at hospital where they would do the Xrays for Dr. Bose but had no way to email them. They suggested a hospital in Mapusa.

Bon's appt. at the dentist lasted until 1 pm...return trip for teeth is in a week. Headed to Mapusa and there the tuk tuk driver first thought the hospital was Galaxy. Turned out they could Xray but not email so we went to Vision Hospital where she ended up getting Xray, but even though they had at first said emailing was possible, the main guy said it was not possible from the hospital. He said he'd try when he got home to email them to Dr. Bose. We'll see!

Back to Anjuna, sweating the whole way...it's been hot here 30 C / 90s F...

10/23

Sunday,,,a completely down day, late rising, going to breakfast at The Oasis Restaurant (our waiter is from Nepal...as are many here - at the Country Kitchen the waiters were all from Calcutta, also, very typical). Great wifi connections here at the Oasis, we were here yesterday for 2 1/2 hours, ha!

At Anjuna Plaza we now have TV, and wifi, although not in the room - have to go to the front dest area to connect. Maybe hot water is on the way??! Cold dip and pour baths are getting a bit tiresome...getting old I guess.

10/24

The dogs howling alarm is a regular 4am event, although, today it lasted an hour! A bit tiresome as well...at least now the solar hot water is available...late afternoon. Bon got an email back from Dr. Bose and it is going to be another hip operation/resurfacing. Most likely in January after their travels in NE an Anaman Islands. She's not very happy about it and since she will be on her own (I'm leaving and apparently sister, Mari, isn't interested in staying a bit longer), she feels a bit intimidated by going through it alone...

10/27

Now wehave to look at all alternatives since Bon needs the surgery after her adventures in NE and Andamans. Have to figure on no help from Mari so 1) I can go ahead with original plan leaving Nov. 12 and Bon is on her own totally or 2) I cancel my flight plans with subsequent $$ penalties and stay until Bon flies back in early Feb....

I have no interest in NE so would most probably stay somewhere in Calcutta and then go with the group to the Andamans after which we would fly to Chennae for Bon's surgery. This will cost a lot more $$$ since I will have to cancel previous flights, stay alone in Calcutta, and repay friends in Missouls for curling fees ....

10/30

Bon has surgery schedule for Jan10 in Chennai..

I do not like either alternative - Bon alone or me staying in India. If only the Bonnie's doc in Missoula had 'allowed' her to have another Xray all this would have been avoided since we could have made the appropriate plans to fit in the surgery . Our medical system i the US is sooo f___cked up! Here you just need a prescription which Bon got easily since she had the previous hip problem. Now we're faced with a much more difficult situation of having to backtrack and re-evaluate all our plans. I really hate our medical system...way too costly for most customers except the very wealthy! It is a monopoly that rewards the 1% and punishes the rest!

11/4

Thanks to nephew, doc, Tim in CA, I was able to get my meds via CVS in Half Moon Bay and sis-in-law, Mari who is flying to meet us in Calcutta in a week. Thank you to all who made this possible...supposedly these meds are available here but have yet to find a "chemist" (the term for druggest here) who carries a supply! Then I also need the prescription, which Tim could possibly email, but I find my trust is formed by the overwhelming propaganda in the US by big Pharma and not as confident about meds here.

Went to Calangute and got blood results from hospital (Bon is quite healthy overall) plus, she got her teeth installed for the second time after some adjustments. Again, temporary, until Monday when she returns to let the dentist know if all is a-ok.

Goa is a state where at least 50% of the structures (homes, commercial bldgs., guest houses, etc.) are either deserted, collapsing, under construction, abandoned/overgrown, completely lacking maintanence or other such run down conditions. It functions at the present, almost entirely dependent upon tourism. Another ubiquitous presence is the overwhelming dependence upon the blue plastic cheap Chinese tarps! They are everywhere in use for a great variety of reasons, not just 'repairs' as in coverings on leaky roofs! I cannot imagine how these people would get along without them!!

11/8

Our last days here at Anjuna Plaza...it has been good with afternoon solar hot water showers, pretty good internet although not in the room so we have to go down to the 'lobby', and power has been fairly consistent usually going out late afternoon for several hours before returning in evening. With the overhead fan the room has been quite pleasantly cool even in the heat of the day. The guys here, ...,have replenished our toilet paper and cleaned the room with new linen and towels when we have asked. During the past 9 days of Diwali the place has been filled with mostly Indian tourist families. Interesting to watch, they have cars which they arrived in but then rented motorbikes to get around most of the time (we guess to the beaches). Not much interaction with them, they smile but show little interest in talking or whatever.

Bon and I go to Calangute last time on Thursday...Bon for her final check with dentist and I for another INR to see if I have corrected the 'rat poison' dosage enough to get my reading more in line, ha!

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