Like quite a few previous years it's been a quiet one for doing, well, erm.. nothing. Some may it's sad to go all that way to laze on a beach, but for us it's sheer bliss.
Been to a few more than once this year as we are happy to eat there, so I'm not putting any place down as a favourite (well maybe Moonlight Bar as the Perri Perri prawns were quality) - all meals we had, we couldn't find a fault with.
Dehli Dar Bar
Last 3 years we have stayed at JJ's, but on recommendation we opted for Greenpeace Enclave, which is down a lane at the side of JJ's and had a basic but very decent apartment.
Cleaned every day by the reliable and trustworthy Mary, bedding and towels changed every 2 days. Good pool but never used it although most days others did.
Had a good look round for other places as a back up if we decide on a change, so until 2013 not sure what to plump for.
Out and About
Like I said at the start, a lazy 2 weeks, but still managed Mackies night market, once it had been confirmed if it was on or not due to the death of the tourism minister - a nice 2 mins silence held for him was a good touch for a man many Goan's rated as the one for the people.
A good night we had with food and drink and good music on. Lot's of Indians (and I mean lots) were well packed around the stage enjoying themselves.
We also made our pilgrimage to the Mandovi night cruise along with very good friends billybluenose and wifey (Alan & Jackie) I think we were the only 4 whites out of 200 on board, and were getting asked for plenty of photos, and chatting about life in England and India - a great night rounded off at the Delhi Dar Bar.
Had a great night at the HT meet-up, thanks to all that showed.
Sadly Alan and me didn't have our day out in Panaji, but next year is looking good..
The Shack / Beach / Weather
I read reports around December time about Ganesh having his shack pulled down due to being oversized - a silly mistake by him, but when you have an old crow in the next shack giving him grief all the time (Suddah's shack) you have to be careful. Why was her shack massive compared to last year and untouched ? Backhanders spring to mind again, just like when she went season after season without a licence, as we all know, that's the way India works..
With the removal of the River Princess (still a small part of it to go along with a 20 meter section underwater) what a massive difference it's made. The tide now comes in at a normal angle and there are very wide stretches of beach to walk down to Aguada, a good monsoon to level where the shacks are built and it shouldn't be far off prior to the RP grounding. It's looking good for all shacks down Sinquerim to get full business back again.
The life guards were kept busy (thank God they were introduced to the beach) as quite a few Indians and Russians got in trouble with the strong undercurrents. Also sad to see an Indian guy (UK based we were told) collapse with a heart attack in the sea and sadly died not long after.
The weather as you may well guess was hot hot hot, out on the road at midday was a no-no, evenings were pretty good with the odd breeze but not really humid, although it was starting to change.
I read a thread on here about 'Is Goa still good value' - well to sum it up, YES. The flights could be an issue price wise, but let's wait and see on that one, but as for prices in bars/restaurants/shacks, we were quiet happy with what we were paying.
I know we all complain about one price for us and one for them, but if you don't want to pay it, move on - I would rather spend my hard earned cash in Goa than European hols anytime, Thailand doesn't interest me.
Let's hope the exchange rate stays up, was 81rps when we left, so well happy.
That's it for this year, a great 2 weeks, regular faces in the shack make it even better, what a nice bunch of people.