The beach is scattered with small restaurant and lodging operations, so far so good. However, on closer inspection they seem to all be inhabited by Russians, Israeli’s, French or otherwise salon-dreaded, chain smoking (not the good stuff), pajama wearing, thrift store clad, circus performing, “whippies” (want-to-be-hippies).
It’s a drag, you think you’re in a remote spot, trying to eat local fare. And you end up with menus catering to European tastes, eggs and potatoes, hamburgers and French fries - not a piquant chutney to be found. Funny to resent these traveler’s to whom in a sense I belong, yet am always trying to escape. Trying to find the “authentic” the “indigenous” an anthropologists paradox, not being able to observe without altering the observed. Wanting to be the first yet realizing there are no undiscovered places.
The water of the Arabian Sea is pleasant, warm and buoyantly saline. Though this portion of the coast is very near large estuaries and rivermouths, so the fine sediment clouds the water inshore. This particulate however, makes for a thriving invertebrate community. The gastropod diversity is evident while beachcombing. Whorls, clams and spires abound. One evening while strolling we did happen upon a local family foraging for barnacle guts and star fish, apparently they make a good curry, but sadly not on any of the “local” menus.
Those these “opihi-men” didn’t have to worry about grabbing their bags to run. No waves of ridable quality in these parts, though I suppose a good cyclone south of Sri Lanka could change that… The dependable off-shore wind of the morning might hold them up into peeling tubes, “bhakti close-outs” if it were. The warm air of the mainland settles in a regular pattern overnight making the morning quite breezy and cool, though by noon it is hot and even the tepid (80F?) water is a welcome refuge.
With time and a simple boat, significant fresh water and some fishing line, I imagine an adventurous soul could disappear for months here, just cruising up and down dropping in on this or that beach. The whippies can’t spread that far out. There are 200km+ of coastline between Goa and Mangalore, with only Udupi in between. Maybe one day…