Thursday, 19 February 2015

Malvan Notes 4 - The Confluence

Top Post on IndiBlogger

 Please read the first, second and third accounts of the Malvan Notes.  This post is the fourth of the series.

   While travelling with family, of adults and children of different age groups, the schedule planned has this uncanny ability to reinvent itself according to the eating, toilet and sleeping habits.  The original plan of starting for Tarkarli after breakfast, which was around forty five minutes drive away, invariably found itself nudged gently to an afternoon trip, much to my consternation.  So I took time off to cool my head and loitered around the village that we stayed in. And believe me, I found a couple of blissful nooks and corners that offered solitude served with fantastic views. But more of that later. Let me quickly take you through the afternoon trip.  The final plan looked like adventure sports at  Deobagh and then sunset view at Tarkarli.

      Hiring a cab that would stick around and bring us back to our cottage, we bounced along the narrow curving lanes leading to Deobagh in a Maruti van.  The road went by old Konkani homes  with towering mango trees and swaying coconut palms that I had grown to love.  While we were blissfully taking in the  views of Tarkarli and wondering at the numerous ‘resorts’ and guest houses that had sprung up along the road, a constant blaring of the horn  from behind disrupted us. The van stopped. A motorcyclist conversed urgently with the driver who then directed him to our group leader, my husband. The motorcyclist was fervently trying to sell his group’s package of water sports. And we were sold. He sped ahead and we continued the journey. After a few minutes I had this eerie feeling of a young animal brought out from the jungle to be trained to do as directed.  Why? Each time we crossed a  bunch  youngsters on bikes, the driver blared his horn. It was too much of a coincidence. Then I noticed his hand stuck out of his window, below the eye level, giving a shake of dismissal to the bikers. Aha! So this was a signal! This flock of sheep has been spoken for!  So most of the youngsters on bikes that you see on this route are scouts, waiting for the prey before the others in the pack catch up.

   When the van finally stopped,our predator, sorry, tour operator escorted us to the bank of the Tarkarli river with the story of etymology of “Tarkarli”. It was during his great grandfather’s days or possibly much before  that era, people used to float on rafts across the Karli creek to reach the village on the other side.  And so this place was named Tarkarli. Since our destination was the Tsunami island for the water sports, we climbed the boat barefoot to ferry across to the island that had apparently appeared after the Tsunami. The ride along the bank was soothing, watching the trees sway and the waters furrowed by the boat. Many people prefer to sail along the Karli backwaters.
Tarkarli Backwater

Tsunami Island

         Barely a few minutes later the air was rife with squeals, of roaring motors and an all pervasive fuel fumes. The last, the fumes of burnt fuel, is sadly what stayed with me for a very long time. The water scooters, banana boats, jet skis and other contraptions criss- crossed at alarming proximity to wailing and screeching enthusiasts, dunking some on the shores for that extra thrill. There is a wide variety of water sports packaged with a price that can be negotiated. The gaudy plastic sheets taut over the four poles of the makeshift stalls   are a loud contrast to the splendour of the surroundings. A beleaguered MTDC houseboat floats solitary in the middle of all the mechanised cacophony.

Hub Of Water Sports

 The moment of peace came in during the ride to the open sea for parasailing. The Karli river empties into the Arabian Sea at Deobagh that serene strip of sand with the vast sea on one side and a hurrying river on the other. From afar a few people seemed to be walking on water with the sliding sun heightening the illusion.

Gulls in Deobagh

 On the opposite side the Bhogawe beach jutted out hosting a large colony of gulls. A flock of them had landed on the sliver of a sandbar between the sea and the river. Maneuvering our way out of the river the boat was caught in the boisterous thrusts of the sea. It was only during my few minutes of parasailing that the beauty of this place sank in. Caught by the wind the chute buoyed up carrying us one by one for a bird’s eye view of the confluence . The wind whispering tranquility and the sun kissing the blushing sky  goodbye. Everything else seemed so distant and unreal .

Sunset From Deobagh

    We came back to a silent Tsunami island. The glowing moon, blushing at it's fullness, was rising above the hillock. A paler image of the other orb that had kissed the world a goodbye. The few bamboo stalls were empty of the vendors. The boats were heading back for the day. The island is left to itself during the night to recoup  and rest before the next horde of travelers arrive with the sun, infusing the brine air with the fumes all over again.



  1. How did the island get its name?
    Written with a touch of humour which made it more enjoyable. Aspect more use of this flavour in future.

  2. I see you are continuing the series and I like that. I am glad you touched upon the mafia on prowl hell bent on looting unsuspecting tourists. Your narration aptly captures the proceedings.

  3. Dipak, it is said that the island surfaced after the Tsunami. And thanks and am glad you liked it.

  4. I could go on about this place Uma.It did cast it's spell on me.Every tourist place attracts all kinds of activities I guess.

  5. I could go on about this place Uma.It did cast it's spell on me.Every tourist place attracts all kinds of activities I guess.


Your words keep me going :)