There’s a lot that has happened in the past month. But my mental state has been in some sort of a disarray. I have been feeling a void. I've succumbed to scrolling on the phone endlessly as opposed to sitting my bottom down to write… nothing new there.
I’m also a fan of the idea that ‘at any given point of time, we are doing exactly what we want to do’. That might have been a tweet by @shl. So if I didn’t write for the past six weeks, that was probably what I wanted to do, no matter the reason. Anyway, I’m back now.
A major life change happened last month—my wife and I moved cities(countries?) and into our new rented home. Now, for some backstory.
It was in Jan 2019 that my then girlfriend (now wife) and I had moved to Mumbai from Bangalore to start life anew. After living in Mumbai for a year and getting its vibe in bits and pieces, my girlfriend was not particularly excited to continue living in that kind of a hustle-bustle. And for me, although I love Mumbai and everything it stands for, I had been increasingly growing suspicious of the idea of living in a huge city and still managing to be truly creative. This especially in Mumbai, where one has to pay rent through their nose, not that I’ve ever paid rent in Mumbai—baap ka ghar hai (we lived with my parents)—but we were on a house hunt. In the middle of all this, Covid struck.
In August 2020, as the pandemic began to slowly tighten it’s grip over us, I had a stray thought pass my mind—what if we moved to Goa? The thought occurred to me while listening to this episode of the podcast Anything but Bollywood. The idea had nothing to do with the fact that the whole world was moving to Goa at that point. (I mean, it probably did, in the larger sense, when everyone was questioning their life choices.)
I shared this thought with my girlfriend, who was stuck in the US at that point. She loved the idea. She had always liked Goa and it was she who showed me around the state when we attended IFFI (India’s official international film festival that happens in Goa every year) in 2019. So, we were both on the same page with moving to Goa.
Long story short, it took us two years with the lockdown, the second wave, getting married, sorting out visa stuff, celebrating our marriage with loved ones, travelling between multiple countries and cities, and finally finding a home for it all to fall in place. So, this has been two years in the making.
As a boy who spent his childhood in Vasai, and as an adult who has been in love with Gokarna and travelled to it every year of my twenties, Goa seems very familiar to me. They are all part of the same coastline. They have similar flora-fauna, architecture and vibe, only prettier.
I don’t speak Konkani, and it isn’t as similar to Marathi as I thought it would be. That is one thing I'm looking forward to learning.
It’s an odd Tuesday that I’m writing this on. May be I’ll stop here. I’ve been here for over a month now, maybe I’ll write about my first reactions to Goa in my next missive to you. This Sunday (I promise!). I'm excited for this new chapter!