There is something extra special about walking along an Indian beach in the early morning, the sun just hotting up as the waves roll sexily in to shore, safe in the knowledge that Burnley beat Chelsea on penalties at Stamford Bridge in the cup last night – Asian euphoria at its very best.
I’m currently in Gokarna, a place in the next state on from Goa & just as lovely – tho’ I don’t think anything can beat the textbook beach idyll back in Palolem. That place was gorgeous – much nicer than Benaulim – a mile-long curve of sand with coconut boles hanging over the restaurant-packed beach. It had a bit of a night-life, & after blagging another disco (for several hours this time) I bumped into a lesbian bird called Fee. She heralds from Todmorden, a town just 10 miles from Burnley. ‘I’m off to Gokarna,’ I said. ‘You’re coming with me!’ she said.
After a day spent razzing about on a moped to a distinctly dodgy Goan fort, I jumped in a taxi with Fee & headed south. A couple of hours later we hit Gokarna island, took a sneaky road & I suddenly found myself at the eponymously titled Paradise Beach. What a touch. Fee’s a regular here… everyone knows her & as her ‘friend’ I’m getting good prices on the weed / illegal beer & my room (one pound). This is a beach hut, with the floor & bed carved from rock (mattress on top) all covered by rushmat roof & walls – its wicked & only ten meters from the sea. Fee has slung her hammock up right outside (for free), & we’ve put rugs & plants around making it into a little villa. the restaurant is literally 5 seconds away, where I am currently building up a tab – as I am at several other places along the beach.
Rock-gouged, sandswept Paradise Beach is at the end of a long chain of beaches which are travelled to by either clifftop walks or boats. Inbetween are rocky headlands – great for scrambling – & many a restaurant to grab some shade & drink a lassi. On the walk into Hindu-heavy Gokarna town I bumped into an English guy with a guitar, & told him about our little slice of Paradise. Currently there’s an English lass staying in the beach hut that lady-of-the-manor-like overlooks our own private part of Paradise, & she & Fee have begun to waffle on incessantly. Hopefully the guitar-chap will bob along to paradise as well, where I’m hoping to stay awhile & recreate a little of the colonial Raj – a little England if you will.