Sailing from the Dona Paula jetty in Goa

The Swift anchored in the deserted Butterfly beach in Goa

(The Swift at anchor in the deserted cove at Butterfly Beach, near Palolem, Goa)

Ashwin Tombat left a journalist’s career in (then) Bombay to settle down in Goa. And he confesses it has been a great ride. And now he combines his professional role as the Editor of Herald, Goa’s second most circulated English newspaper, with his passion for sailing as a coordinator for the Goa Yachting Association.

I have never sailed before although the idea has always held appeal. So, I took up on Ashwin’s offer to take me sailing. And on a fine, sunny afternoon last week, I joined Ashwin on his 20 ft sailboat, The Swift at the Don Paula jetty for what turned out a bad case of amour. The last time this happened to me was when I was 20 years old and as you would suspect it was a girl. This time it was the absolutely seductive charm of softly lapping waves, the breeze across your face and the companionable silence of men on a voyage of no purpose.

We set sail at about 2 pm and held course for the small & relatively less visited beach at Bambolim. It took us about an hour-and-a-half to get there. And after a 3 hour orgy of seafood at the completely deserted beach shack (pomfret, kingfish, mackerel, prawns and mussels) we decided to return just as the sun was setting. Sailing in the afternoon was great. But the return journey with the setting sun soon giving way to an almost-full moon was magical.

Ashwin picked up sailing relatively late in life & I cannot think of a reason to respect a man more than his willingness to learn something new all the time. Especially something new that helps you enjoy life.


(above: Ashwin’s son Kabir framed against an eclipsed sunrise on the morning of Gudi Padwa (Ugadi) day 2007. 18 km out at sea off Cabo de Rama)


(The Swift on another sail)

Ashwin Tombat in his sailing boat The Swift in Goa

(The contented man on the left, in the specs, with waving hair and mousch, is Ashwin)

(All photos courtesy Ashwin Tombat)

Click here for all my Goa posts.

And here for all my posts on beach vacations.


4 thoughts on “Sailing from the Dona Paula jetty in Goa

  1. Pomfret, kingfish, mackerel, prawns and mussels! An orgy indeed. Landing up on desolate beaches are a fantasy I hope to make true someday (but not like a modern Robinson Crusoe!). Has something to do with all the Enid Blyton’s I used to read during my early teens, I guess.

  2. I found your blog via Google blog search while searching for Yachts and your post regarding “Sailing from the Dona Paula jetty in Goa” looks very interesting to me and it is also very creative. I have a few Yachts websites of my own and I must say that your blog is really good. Keep up the great work on a really high class resource.

    I always tell my friends that this world of ours has many places where you can relax. One of these places is naturally the seas and the oceans. Yachts are perfect for individuals who have a love of speed and resilience to traverse across these passageways. For this reason the various big yachts are the perfect choice. You will find that these yachts have many different facilities, living spaces and equipment to help you with your travels. Once you have found the right type of yacht for you all that remains is to make sure that you have the various items on board. You are now ready to head off into the sunset.

  3. We are soon relocating to Goa and I am reading up a lot on Goa and its various seductions. This reading led me to your blog. I wonder how it will be to set up home in a place where people usually come for vacations. I am super excited and happy. Thanks for your very detailed and insightful posts which will come handy when we start living there.

    Joy always,

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