Tej- “Bhai, Help me plan a short beach retreat to Goa”
Me-“Hi Tej, what do you want to do?”
Tej- “I want to do some mind-blowing water sports, etc over a weekend since I can’t take any leaves. I will take a late Friday night flight from Delhi and return via an early morning flight on Monday.“
Me- “I believe that in Goa all the places, that have cool activities, are a bit scattered. I would rather suggest Mahabalipuram near Chennai.”
Tej- “But is it a good beach destination?”
Me- “Well, since you have a tight schedule, this may work really well for you. I can actually show a great side to Mahabs despite the searing summer.”
My friend from Delhi did not have the time to think so much or research. He trusted me and booked his tickets to Chennai. I picked him up from the airport, and directly drove along the OMR and ECR stretch to the Radisson Blu Resort Temple Bay in Mahabs. He was pleasantly surprised with the warm welcome we received at the resort, which included a delicious summer welcome drink and a necklace made with sea-shells. Owing to a long journey, my friend wanted to just relax over the night at the garden-facing room.
Early next morning, Tej woke up and asked me about what lay in store for him over the weekend. I smiled, and led him from our room to the beach. Those who stay away from the beach and only have hills up north for respite from mundane life, have this awe reserved for anything around sun and the sea. It was early morning and the air around was cool.
The next 40 hours were spent discovering the adrenalin lost to corporate life. We started by gearing our elbows and knees to drive cycles across Mahabalipuram and discovering that the wind in your direction as you pedal along, can actually negate all fears of summer heat. Sweat, yes, we did! To cool off, we jumped in the giant, meandering pool spread across the length of the resort and arrived at a corner, where a Scuba Diving instructor was available. We learnt the basics of diving from him at the pool itself. It’s only when you wear that suit and have an oxygen cylinder in your back, do you realise that years of sitting on a chair at work, did not prepare you for such things. Once you are inside the water, you get to feel how your breathing routines change, once inside the water with a mask.
But just a pool won’t give you the experience you are seeking. We decided to head to the sea to take lessons on surfing. Walking with a surf board under your arms makes for a swag moment, but once you are in the sea, your survival instincts are at its peak. It’s only when you go into the sea and wait to ride the wave, you realise the might of the ocean.
We also used the ATV on the beach to race and break on the sand doing our version of the dune bashing. After an hour in the sand, with our bodies having more salt than required, we went back for a quick shower to get into the pool again.
Once at the pool, we decided to get into a circular orb, to attempt Zorbing. For the first 10 minutes, we fell a few times before actually managing to make the orb move!
All that action meant we needed to replenish our energy stocks, and off we went to the Wharf 2.0 restaurant to relish the fresh catch of the day. We gorged on a delicious lunch and waited there, till the sun decided to set behind us. In the end, to sooth our senses, we chose a massage treatment for ourselves at the Bodhi spa in the resort.
We had made enough memories on this short weekend trip including a short trip to the Mahabalipuram town, where we met a stone carver and talk about his art and life.
Just 40 hours. That’s all it takes to travel 2000 miles across the country, take a dip into the local experience and then head back to work! Does it sound interesting? Hop over to do the same things that we did by asking for the Summer Chillers Program at the Radisson resort.