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Newsletter. Issue 2002-5. Dec.27, 2002
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Letter from Goa
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Letter from Goa

VARIOUS imaginative and high-sounding titles have been bestowed on Goa over the centuries. Let us add here on of our own: Goa Centre for Celebrations. Down here on the west coast of India, the year is about to ring out after having thrown up a innumerable celebrations, religious or otherwise. Perhaps I am repeating when I say that people have been coming here not only attracted by the beauty of our land but for a lot of other good, bad and even ugly reasons.

Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee will arrive here soon, to have a good rest at a South Goa resort. North Goa seems to be at the losing end, at least where celebrities are concerned, since the advent of the "River Princess". Anyway, one wonders whether the year-end in Goa is fine enough time for such a thing. His deputy, Advani, will be here too. The Goa cops are already hard put to contain the threat that the Al-Qaeda terrorists have infiltrated Goa to bomb the Israelis who descend on Anjuna and other beaches for the New Year celebrations.

The round of rave parties has already begun and the cops are said to be on the lookout to stop them. But who can see in the dark? Definitely not the cops, who can't even see crime in broad daylight. Despite these eternal handicaps they are now burdened with watching Goa's rough, serpentine roads to see that no harm comes to the national leaders, who would be here to rest for a couple of days or more.

The terrorist bit has already terrorized the tourists, who would have been here in several thousands otherwise. The visitors appear to be much less in number than they once used to be at this festive time of the year in Goa.

Come December and several Goan NRIs return for a holiday to the land of their forefathers. You find them all over the place these days&visiting relatives, friends and acquaintances, sampling the "natalamcho kunsvar" (Christmas sweets), purchasing "cheurisam" at the Mapusa Friday Market&and being virtually at all odd places. One wonders, however, how many of them will find some time and would be inclined to attend the Convention organised by the NRI Felicitation Centre on November 29.

Well, we haven't done with celebrations yet. At Goacom, we were involved in a grand occasion of our very own with Marlon Menezes, director of Goacom Insys, taking as his life-partner lovely Aldila Lobo. The nuptials took place at the Bambolim Cross at 5.30 pm on December 27, with Fr Athaide, Fr Ronnie D'Souza and Fr Archie Fernandes being the celebrants at the Mass.

"God's relationship with mankind is depicted, in the Old Testament, in matrimonial language," intoned the suave priest in his brief homily, which lauded Marlon and Aldila for the crucial step they have taken. Later, at the green and profusely decorated lawns of Cidade de Goa, many gathered enthusiastically to shower the happy newly weds with red rose petals and confetti&the youngsters blew bubbles gloriously, while the sea clapped consistently, rhythmically on the sands that lace the Cidade lawns.

Mrs Dias, the toast mistress, sang some virtues of Marlon and Aldila and their parents too, before going on to caution the special man and his wife: "If somebody tells you that there is a perfect marriage, don't believe them; it's a myth." She added, "A marriage has to be nurtured and sustained in love and understanding," and felt that the intelligent and well-qualified couple possessed it in plenty. Mrs Dias quoted Aldila, "Marlon is the rugged type of hiking and biking man and I am a city girl. Ever since we have known each other, we have found great joy in doing the things that each other likes."

Not really given much to formality, Marlon miked&sorry, joked: "I had a fancy speech prepared and I left it at the church," and thanked one and all for making the wedding day such an august occasion. Aldila also had her own say: "Where would we be without friends, who were instrumental in bringing us together, and have great pains, some crossing oceans and others just with the efforts they put in, to be here today?" Aldila mentioned in a special way Ariosto and Vivian Coelho, who she said were "very instrumental" to bring Marlon and her together.

Alfie, the favourite announcer of FM listeners in Goa, conducted the function in his usually, very engaging manner. Archies, with Santa Claus caps, provided melodious music, fitting the occasion.

Shall we say&Till then, and wish that the NEW YEAR 2003 ushers in a heavy load of happiness, peace and prosperity to each one of us in humankind&!

Editor: Joel D'Souza


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