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Wednesday 24 February 2016

Holiday Ahoy! - Part 2

Read Holiday Ahoy! - Part 1

The alarm went off at the designated hour, but alert Nina was up before it went off! She could hear its particularly nasty and tuneless tempo even from the bathroom; set specifically to awaken the least the normal dead! Finally she came out of the bathroom and switched it off.

'Herding time once again', she thought while prodding Nik vigorously and proceeding to wake up the little Kumbhkarans.
After a quick shower, the groggy boys and the chirpy mom soon made their way to the restaurant for a quick 'bite'! The 'bite' of course turned out to be a full-blown event, in fact the resort's brekkie was touted to be one of the best one couldn't miss that could they?!

Pretty soon the Dev family was so full that it necessitated an urgent visit to the room and its washroom!

"Tring,Tring" It was the room's intercom. "Hello, yes it is. Yes, please hold the bus, we are on our way, just 2 minutes and we'll be there!" Nina said to the receptionist. 
The family hurried on its way and was soon thankfully ensconced in the sleek tour bus replete with reclining seats and curtains for the boys to play truant with!

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The bus's only other occupants were an aged foreign couple who smiled benignly at them, amused by the antics of the brats.

Nina went over to the driver, a friendly Goan named Joe and informed him of their tour preference: Of visiting only one beach instead of the half a dozen listed on the itinerary, skip all churches except one and so on!
The driver nodded happily and said,"You ask duh udder people if dhey olso don wanta see, dhen toh no problem men!"

Nina smilingly went over to the lovely old couple,"Hey, I am Nina, that's my husband Nik, and my kids Neel and Varun. Nice to meet you. Where are you from?" 
The lady replied in halting English,"I Denise from Denmark. Spik leettle Engleesh. This Peter my new husband. We on honeymoon."
"Oh, how sweet!" gushed Nina and added, "I was wondering whether we could cut short the long tour, it is pretty boring, same kind of places, let's do only a few important places, hope you have no problems....?"
The wizened old lady replied, "Oh, no, no, no....v must see all places, very vunderful I hear!"
Nina persisted, "But they all look the same, no difference, it will be a waste of time.." 
"Oh, psshaw! V luv same, same look place don't we Pete?" replied Denise the Dane with a ringing  finality to close the discussion!

Crestfallen Nina reported back the latest debacle, that would set back their day's schedule by more than half the day....and all of them groaned!

The rest of the journey, the oldies totally ignored them and gone were the indulgent smiles! The family drearily made their way in and out of the bus, every ten minutes, the Danes had added a few more undiscovered beaches and churches to their list of 'Must-see places in Goa' researched from the  Lonely Planet or whatever! They spent hours posing cozily for selfies in each of the locales! Joe the driver happily pandered to their whims as he surreptitiously pocketed the Euros they slipped him! 'Athithi Devo Bhava' Nina kept chanting to herself, in between gritted teeth!
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The kids and Nik squinted tiredly at the camera trying to smile and pose for Nina. "Didn't we come here just a few minutes back mum?"wailed Varun.
Finally the day was drawing to an end and they had still not made it to any of the places of their choice. 
Nik went to check with the driver Joe, who cheerfully replied,"Oh dat? We do dat tomorrow no? Todday too late men!"

And so they returned wearily to the room, to wash off the grime and sand of the tiresome day. 
Ahh...lovely house-keeping staff, had cleaned up the room, plumped up the pillows and laid fresh, crisp sheets on the expansive beds...this was heaven!

Nina sank into the tub to soak her tired body into its deliciously soothing, scented foamy warmth and scowled thinking about the insufferable Danes. As she delicately flicked the foam off her fingers, she thought dreamily,"Ohhh....I wish I could spend the whole day doing nothing....that would be so lovely!"

Yes! That was just what they needed: To do nothing, just relax and soak in the pleasures of the lovely resort and its various attractions!
Nina jumped out of the tub and hurried to share her exciting 'No-Action plan' with her family. The children and Nik lustily cheered her breakthrough plan with loud whoops of joy!

The next day, the family enjoyed the best day of their lives doing the things they loved the most, which was basically - doing nothing besides eating, sleeping, eating some more, swimming in the pool, matinee show in the mini-theater watching Steve Martin in the rib-tickling 'Pink Panther', playing on the beach, swinging in the hammock beneath the coconut trees and capturing umpteen shots of all these happy hours of undiluted bliss!

Nik fondly placed his arm around Nina, "Babe, we really must do this again, this is so totally relaxing!" Nina rested her head on his shoulders and nodded in agreement...yes, totally, completely, their ideal kind of holiday: Holidaying on the beaten path and loving it!

Time to get back to reality. The holiday was over and it time to get back home, Nina hurried about, collecting souvenirs from the lovely hotel room. 
"Hmm, tea, coffee, milk powder sachets in, note pad, pens, pencils, matches in...Neel, Varun! Go pick up all the dental kits, soap, shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer bottles from both the bathrooms kids, its all been paid for, no point in leaving them behind."
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The kids obediently pooled in their joint spoils into Nina's have-it-all tote.
The holiday was over but they would be carrying away with them, the fragrances that would remind them of the happy times.

And thus it was that the Dev family returned back to base, making it look more like a railway station and a thriving Dhobi-Ghaat with the washing machine running on repeated cycles! Nina mourned the fact that she'd scarcely worn even a quarter of the clothes she'd carried and hurriedly changed the topic, when Nik gave her his 'told-you-so' look!

Their posts on the social media had created sufficient ripples. Family and friends suitably appeased with gifts of cashew-nuts (hastily picked up at Goa airport) amidst tales regaling all with the virtues of the pristine beaches and lofty churches of Goa!

"Mummy we forgot to bring back all this kind of stuff from Aunt Leila's house when we stayed at her place last summer. But don't worry, next time we go there, I'll not forget! I quite liked that large bottle of Watermelon and Apple shampoo, she had kept in the bathroom," Varun commented importantly as he helped her unpack her large tote!!


Read other stories from Nina's World: #NinasWorld

Disclaimer: All the characters in the above posts are fictional, any resemblance to anyone living or dead is purely coincidental and unintentional.

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