For my dad's birthday this year, we planned a weekend of seafood, beer and lazing around for him at a beachside resort in Manori.
My classic dad woke me up at 6 am on the Sunday morning of a vacation weekend. Why? For a rendezvous with Manori before it had dressed up and prepared to entertain its tourists.
And the must-sees on an early morning walk in Manori are -
1. The carts of gola (crushed ice popsicles) sellers, who can sleep late on Sunday morning knowing that nobody will steal those carts.
2. Children hunting for crabs amidst the rocks on the beach. They could sell you those crabs at the market later that day, but instead they gladly offer to teach you to hunt for them.
3. Locals sitting at tiny roadside shrines and having conversations with God; or doing their daily exercises and other small tasks in his presence.
4. Mangoes (in the right season of course) fallen on the tree-lined roads, that you take back with you after testing them for that delicious ripe mango aroma.
5. People who watch you picking and sniffing mangoes, and go get all the mangoes they have been collecting and give them to you for free.
6. A tiny bakery with the owner's house right on top of it. The owner loading loaves onto his cycle carrier so that he can deliver it from door to door, while leaving behind whiffs of freshly baked bread.
7. A horse cart owner bathing his horse as lovingly as his wife braids his daughter's hair before she leaves for school.
8. Stories and life lessons from your father - the ones you will remember long after you have completely forgotten about all the fish and beer you had that day.
Over the years, Manori has gained a reputation as a couples' spot and an island of seedy resorts. After this visit, I have started to see if for what it really is - a small village that likes being away from Mumbai; so it can preserve the former innocence and charm of Mumbai.
#travel #travelpics #travelphotography #travelgram #travelwriting #travelstories #traveldiaries #traveltips #wanderlust #writing #words #stories #manori #mumbai #bombay #island #beach #sea #resort #mango #seafood #beer #bakery #weekend #vacation #fishingvillage #sunday #father #love #life