Saturday, May 28, 2011

Goa by Motorbike

There's nothing quite like the freedom of having your own wheels.  And Goa, with its winding beach roads and surprisingly light traffic, seemed to be the perfect place to explore on two wheels.  So ignoring Scott's warnings of the danger and impossibility of safely riding a scooter (despite his long-time AOL screenname of Lil'Scooter27), we forked over 250 rupees ($5), begged and pleaded for two helmets (apparently the only two helmets in all of Goa) and hopped on the Big Banana.
This was our first motorbike experience, so we didn't know it at the time, but this bike was a piece of crap.

After the disastrous ATV Incident of 2010, I declined my own bike, preferring to ride behind Dave.*    At first I was nervous, holding tight and trying desperately not to squeal at Dave to watch out any time another bike or a cow came within 10 feet of us. But by the end of that first day I was a pro.  I didn't sit side-saddle like the Indian ladies, but I could text and ride with the best of them.

* This was probably a good thing.  When I finally took our motorbike in Thailand out for a practice run, I got lost within about 30 seconds.

Ready to roll.  Or ready for launch. 
I am equal parts scooter-passenger and NASA astronaut.

When I wasn't using the iPhone to text, email or read the map, I was entertaining myself on the back of the bike by taking pictures with it.  Here's some of what we saw, cruising the roads of northern Goa.

Practicing in the hotel driveway
Nary a helmet in sight
Entering the town of Anjuna
Sugarcane juice stand
Fire buckets at the train station.  What were we doing at a train station with our motor-bikes?
Well, because India Railways (with its 1.5 million employees, 63,000 km of rail routes
and 6,800 stations) was only taking reservations in person this week.
Samosa cart on the side of the road, near the gas station.
At ten US cents a pop Dave could not get enough of these freshly fried pockets of health.
Women working and boys playing cricket.
The men are surely idling somewhere nearby.
Mail drop-box.
Approximately 2/3rds of our postcards successfully made it to the States.
If you are our friend, but did not get a postcard, yours was sadly in that third batch.
And the letters from the drop box go into a sack which gets haphazardly strewn about the floor of the post office.
A peaceful road
A roadside fruit stand
Hot! Hot! Hot!
Chili peppers for sale.
Laundry drying
Hints of the region's Portuguese influence
Hello sir. Corn?
This guy stood no chance as he was located just outside the Ganesh Juice Stand.
Also his corn is disturbingly neon green.
The open road (but for the cows)

Lush fields 
And finally, Dave's favorite roadside samosa cart.  Yum.
All of our Goa photos are available here.


  1. I love how all the samosa love is coming from Dave only.. is someone projecting?

  2. I never realized the irony of Scott's screen name funny!


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