Archive for the ‘Goa, India’ Category

Fontainhas urinal

August 21, 2012

Private Urinal

This blog dates back to the beginning of June. Due to business pressures we’ve been ignoring blogs, but now we have returned from our annual visa run to the UK, the dust is settling and hope to keep the diary going.

The British Business Group organised a members’ event which we joined on Sunday evening. Arriving in good time we had 30 minutes to kill before the start of a guided walk through Fontainhas. We eventually found a dingy little bar which was open and enjoyed a beer and then were late for the start of the walk.

Fontainhas is a small area of Panjim which still retains a sense of what Panjim must have been like in the last century or so of the Portuguese rule in Goa. We last had a look in 2008 and are pleased to have seen that the rot has been reversed and a good attempt at preservation and conservation is under way… we guess without much help from the government. The most obvious change is that the people who live there now appear to be taking pride in their surroundings. Many of the buildings are now painted in one the four basic colours which were enforced during Portuguese rule. Each building had to be repainted biennially after monsoon.

There are still buildings being abandoned and we suppose this is inevitable in view of the mud construction; maintenance costs must be onerous. Mud and monsoon don’t work well together. Talking of which we have a slightly early start to monsoon this year… a nice downpour last night… first rain since November.

Our guide Jack was informative and fun. We didn’t get round ┬áto asking him why a gentleman’s urinal had been installed behind a light wrought-iron gate opening on to the street in what was the quirkiest building on the walk. The walk finished with a view of a garish pink 1910 Hindu temple half way up a hillside. It’s been recently refurbished and the lighting is, well,remarkable.

A meal at the well restored and maintained Panjim Inn wrapped the evening up.