Thursday, 3 November 2016

The voice of the sea speaks to the soul

Why do people flock to a sea beach? Many reasons.
Children love to play in the sand, build sand castles. Teaches them creativity.
Families splash in sea waves and have fun.
Surfers ride the waves.
Enjoy a walk in soft sand.
Admire sunrise or sunset.
Ride a water scooter or do para sailing.
Snorkeling and scuba diving.
Just watch the waves coming in and crashing.
Observe creatures like sand bubbler crabs making burrows.
Soak in the silence.
Talk to yourself. (See the title of the story!)
Just gaze at the horizon.
And so on.

In September this year, during our visit to the Andamans, after snorkeling and marveling at the corals, we headed westward to Radhanagar Beach. If you haven't yet read the snorkeling story of Elephant Beach, click here.
See the map of Havelock island below. Map courtesy Barefoot Resorts.

The island has six villages numbered one to six. As we drove past, the villages appeared to be sustainable. We could see the villagers growing rice, coconut and other crops/plants which form part of their staple diet.
 It was a 30-minute drive to Radhanagar beach from our Resort. See a line diagram below.

After parking the vehicle, last 100 meters of the road is lined with few shops and eateries. Fresh coconut water, Jhal-muri and such snacks are available. As you reach the end of the road, the beach comes into sight. And you hold your breath.
As I saw an old lady soaking in her solitude at the beach, I was reminded of an anonymous quotation "The voice of the sea speaks to the soul". Here is the picturesque quote (PQ) with above quotation.

Cell phone menace hasn't spared even the Andaman islands. Even though only BSNL and Airtel signals were reliable, still people couldn't do without their cell phones!
Not all FFA (Friends Forever Asli) members came to Radhanagar beach. Click here to know more about FFA. Here are the veterans and their spouses in their 60s and 70s-- undaunted in their spirit.
 You can't miss the creative patterns in the sand made by tiny Sand Bubbler Crabs. For a detailed picture story on the sand bubbler crabs, click here.
 Photo-op on the beach continued.
You can get a taste of the beach panorama through this 30-second video. It features GR and Swapan enjoying the view.

Mangroves: Mangrove forests and swamps form an important part of marine ecological system. Mangroves prevent soil erosion, give protection from tsunamis, provide breeding ground for fish and other marine animals. Mangroves and corals co-exist around the world. See the two maps below- the first one depicting corals and the second one showing mangroves around the world.

About 71% of mangroves in India are found on the East coast. Andaman region is rich in mangrove forests. See the pictures below.

For details on mangroves in Andamans, click the link here.
For mangrove swamps worldwide, you may browse the article here.
Rich forest cover in Andamans adds to the beauty of the beaches. Pictures:

Our Scuba diving instructor had advised us not to miss the lagoon at the western end of the beach. It was a fairly long walk and we had to return before sunset. All visitors have to clear off the beach as the sun sets every day.

Although we reached the lagoon in time with enough daylight but we refrained from taking more pictures there. We did not want to disturb the privacy of two young couples at the lagoon.

Some of the rocks at the beach had moss deposit. It made a contrasting picture.
We also spotted a landing craft of Indian Navy on the beach.
On the return leg from the lagoon, light was fading but not the intensity of sea waves. Seeing the surf, I was reminded of another quotation. PQ on the waves and the surf.

It was time for sunset. Feel the sunset through the pictures.

Before we end this story, here is another PQ. Life is like a sea. Read on:
You would have noticed that the beaches at Havelock island are exclusive and not over crowded. Hope it remains like this in times to come.

Thanks for browsing. Your own memories or pictures are welcome.
   - Harsh-the-Ghumakkad with inputs from Gipy-Gian Prakash
     3rd Nov 2016

Postscript: Links to all the ten stories of our visit to the Andamans in 2016 are given below. Just click to browse.

Who were the travellers? - FFA Friends forever asli
Port Blair and its attractions- Kaala Paani, Corvyn's Beach
Sailing to Havelock - weather permitting
Thrill of Snorkeling- Elephant Beach
Kalapathar Beach- Where you discover yourself
Radhanagar Beach- Where the Sun goes down in a blink
Ross Island- Ruins with a story and incredible sound and light show
Chidiyatapu- Where the birds find you

Thanks again.

     Harsh-the-Ghumakkad with Neeta Bhargava/ 30th Dec 2016

#Portblair #andamans #islands #cellularjail #ffa #ghumakkadharsh #ghumakkadhb #havelock #elephantbeach #radhanagarbeach #rossisland #scubadiving #snorkeling

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