India Travel Stories, Page 17


I did not get robbed, but a person down the way in the XXXX huts got robbed. I am going to call it the XXXX huts because it really does not matter. The cost the room, the owner, or any other explanation of where or what or why does not matter. It happened and could happen in any hotel in the world.

It was a toilet run theft or maybe best to say a person left their room for a short period and someone entered, stole her money and was gone before she returned.


A girl is living in a hut on legs here on Palolem Beach. The hut does not have a toilet inside the room and the person uses the communal toilet or shower. This is common for at least 80-95 percents of the rooms on this beach. I have not seen a room where the toilet is not shared. I know of one place that has a toilet inside the room. The problem is that is not important. The person left the room for some reason or any reason without locking the door. A person in this situation was watching her room and ran in and stole all her money. It was suppose to be about 2000 Dollars. This is a lot of money for a backpacker to have on them and for me ridiculous. I had close to that on me in Iraq, but then there are no banks in Iraq so I had no choice. Some of this is maybe traveler’s check. I did not talk to the person directly yet that got robbed. I will try.

She woke up at 3:00 pm and went to the toilet. When she returned the room was robbed. Now a robbery often gets blamed on the wrong thing. She may have just discovered it after returning from the toilet. Maybe she had some guy in the room earlier and he stole all her money. Then she went to the toilet and come back and for some reason checks. Blaming it on the wrong reason. Lots of thefts happen by people or men or women that some person meets and bring home with them for the night or part of the night, a casual friend of sorts visiting the room. It is better to not bring people in your room. Lot of people on a beach like this may bring people into there room to smoke drugs.

This is sort of the shoplifter method of theft. Someone is in your room visiting and snatches or nicks something. If a lot of people are always in your room then they can do this without being blamed.

Normally a person steals what they know you have, they do not steal from people with nothing. Someone for some reason probably knew she had that money in her room. So she helped them.

I have a computer. The secret is very difficult to keep secret for a long time. That is why I try to get a room that is difficult to break into or enter easily. I am in a concrete room with bars on the window. The lock mechanism or hasp to bolt the door is one of the biggest I have ever seen on any hotel room. It is great and makes me feel very safe. I have my own lock that I brought from another country and is not the cheapest on the market. Nothing bought in this country and known by people.

The only way to break into my room is to come through the roof of to literally break the door in. They would break the door into two pieces. This is not a normal type robbery. It does happen when you have an isolated room. I am in the middle of a courtyard area and my room is connected to the owner’s house. I am not isolated. This is always a problem of camping or living in a motor home or van. You can get robbed easily.

It is always a temptation to leave the door unlocked for just a short look in the mirror for me to comb my hair. I on occasion do this, but probably less then 1 percent of the time. I am gambling when I do so.

I stayed or shared a room for the first 2 nights on the beach. The huts were on the ground and not up in the air or legs. The person I shared the room with refused to lock the door and said they trusted the locals. This creates a situation where I have to leave. If I must trust the whole camp or area I will not stay in a situation. I was on the Amazon River for 18 days. I had my backpack with a computer below me for the whole time. I did not open the computer or show anyone the computer including the foreigners that were with me. I did not talk about my computer either. Because know one knew or I did not talk about the computer there was not temptation for people to steal the computer.

I would say stealing my laptop computer in this country would be like stealing 35,000 dollars in the USA. It is one year’s wage. The person that stole the money from the girl here may have gotten 1 year’s wages for the theft. This is a huge theft. It sounds small to us in a way and would only think of 35,000 dollars as being a big theft. But this is really what the person stole. They stole in our minds 35,000 dollars worth of value. A lot of people would become thieves if they thought they could steal 35,000 dollars and not get caught. Like a fellow worker leaving 35,000 dollars in the desk drawer in a large floor of cubicles.

So what is the bottom line of this story? Lock your door always when you leave.

What is the value of my computer to me? It would cost 1000 dollars to replace my computer. So to me… that means I could live in India for about 166 days on that money. That is one-half a year of living in this country for me. I spend about 6 dollars per day here. That is a lot of money to me. I live on about 5400 dollars a year. I would say that to take or say what the value of 1000 dollar is to me. I would say that it is about 15,000 dollars USA money. I would feel like I lost 15,000 dollars USA. This is mainly because I am not in the USA. I am in a country that would be very difficult for me to earn 1000 dollars. It would take maybe one half year for me to save that money working in this country. I would have to return home to earn that money. That would cost a lot.

People may think I am crazy when I say my Hobo Budget is 5400 dollars a year. But I was at the coffee club with a lot of drinkers and travelers sitting around. They spend the season here in Goa. They smoke cigarettes and are just normal people or members of the English colony of expatriate here.

One person says,

“I budget 50 pounds per week.”

All the people nodded their heads except for me.

I think in dollars, so I was translating that in my head. I was thinking. That is about 75 U.S. dollars. Let me think. I know I spend 6 dollars per day and 6 times 7 days in a week is 42 dollars. Round that up and I spend about 50 dollars per week. If I drank and smoke cigarettes I would be on the same budget as them.

So a normal expatriate on this beach lives on about 75 USA dollars a week or about 300 dollars per month. That is just for normal expenses. Lots of these guys have Enfield motorcycles and I am sure they spend more. But not on the just run of the mill food, drink and shelter. Toys and such is where they would spend extra money. They are not tourist. They do not go shopping daily for sarongs, and crazy things or trinkets.

Newsletter in Palolem Goa

Palolem Goa India


I will go and pick up my 7 pairs of pant that are in the process of having my secret pockets sown inside. It cost me about 25 cents USA per pocket to have them sown inside. I am probably being generous. I also took my backpack to them to have a zipper replaced. This will cost 1 dollar U.S.

The rest of the day will be devoted to getting sun and finishing my newsletter. Putting some final touches on it and hoping my grammar problems are minimized. I am lucky because of the time difference, I can send this at night and it gets to the USA in the morning and Europe in the afternoon. Not really important but I like to think that someone is out there working in a padded cubicl and an email comes in with pictures of the beach. Sort of a great way to let them dream and help them steal time from their capture.

I am building up steam. I will finally. I hope. I think. I maybe will make this 2 hour walk tomorrow to see the turtles nest.


I have learned about world history here in Goa. The trends and fashions of the 60s and 70s that shape opinions. Lots of older people around that were the real rebels of this time. They are quite interesting and humorous. Lots of 65 year old men smoking dope and drinking. Some have grown up and other have not. I always believe that most people change little after they end school. The just stand still in the time frame of the time they graduated and protect or adhere to the culture or their time in the sun.


I have caught myself defending that people are basically good and all the conspiracy theories and corruption is just crap. I admit that there is lots of corruption…

But I bet my life on the fact that people are good. I went to Iraq when nobody said is was safe. But I hung around with the 90 percent of the world. The good people and stay away from the trouble makers. I do not advise most people to do this because only if you can tell at 10 yards who is the 90 percent and who is the 10 percent without ever talking to the person. If your instinct cannot do this. Stay home.

I thought this was weird for myself. But I find that in the end I am very optimistic about people, just not sure I want to share lunch with the majority.


There is a few coffee clubs around Palolem beach. I try to stop outside my room to have a cup of coffee with Gabe about 7:30 in the morning. He give me a perspective on a history of the world from a English and Goa view from WW II until the present. What a free education for the price of a cup of coffee.

There are various coffee clubs here in Palolem mostly catering to two groups. One is the colony of British Expatriates of long-term standing here, and the other is for the Tourist that carry backpacks that need some Muesli and do not feel comfortable unless they get some western style service, talk and food. There is a German place that sells bread. So it is popular. Just like Al Pizza. Very popular with the colony. He is a Swiss guy with Dredds that make a pizza that looks more like quiche. Nothing new in this. Most pizza in other countries has too much pineapple and tuna and short on pepperoni and cheese.

I had some of my secret pockets made here so I can install in some of the new clothes I have purchase. They cost me about 50 cent USA here to have made and a lot of patience. I had 20 made and will walk over to the same place and take about 6 pairs of pant and shorts to have my clothes brought up to my level of proper travel condition. I am fully prepared to conquer a small planet, or will be soon. I am almost fully restocked of all the missing pieces in my backpack.

The only thing I can never get right for my backpack is a mirror. I have a very small mirror, but I am lucky to see my nose with it. Just too small for me to be vain. I have purchase larger mirrors but always end up breaking them.

I have been in a lot of expensive countries in the last 4 months and all my staple supplies of widgets and what-cha-ma-call-its are gone or need replaced. So India has been so far a good place to restock and fix, mend, and replace all the missing parts of my home. I live in a backpack. I think in a computer. When I go out my room I am in the world. Life is just too good. Thank you to all the good Gods of the world.

I was having a discussion this morning about the Islamic religion. It seems to be very close to a cult. I could talk about the similarities. I wonder if the world is brave enough to discuss whether a cult can really be a religion and whether a religion can really be a cult?


I was reading a comment from some government official in the Muslim country of Turkey after the Bombing of a Jewish Synagogue in Istanbul.


The government, said Cicek, condemns the bombings as "savage and inhumane acts of violence -- no matter who did it or why."

The bombers, he said, "are not human and they are not Muslim."

Can I use deductive logic in reverse and say?

"that if they are not human and they did this they are X?"

I suppose this has a lot to do if who did this... Is there a secret we are suppose to keep quiet?

I took this from:

READER ANSWER - Me looking for manufacturer of Backpack in India?


I could be wrong, but I don't think there is a nylon backpack manufacturer in India. Cotton, jute or leather though, are Indian materials they make bags with.

Here is a listing of Indian bag manufacturers (in Asia, it seems nylon backpacks are made in China, Taiwan and Thailand). You could ask these manufacturers and find out or ask for a referral. I could get you Chinese and other Asian contacts for the standard backpack types. For instance, Jansport is made in Taiwan, as I recall from looking for you before.

- Chris

I have a theory about not wanting to swim up stream.

If it looks like I am the only one swimming then maybe I am in the wrong river.

It looks like India is sort of out of the game. They so far do not have any backpacks for sale and the ones may be from Taiwan?

I am sure they make some backpacks here somewhere. But it does not seem obvious so far. This is a big country. I know that in La Paz, Bolivia they have a market that has all the raw material type pieces that you can buy to manufacture backpacks. In fact... hehehe they also sell the brand name tags so you can add to the bag. This is specifically so they can make copies.

But in the end a good supply of parts and a good supply of labor is needed. So it looks like China, Taiwan and Thailand become more interesting and India become less. I am wondering about whether this is about them export them to me, or me going and importing them.

I still have Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia on my list. But then China, Taiwan and Thailand

are also good. Oh yea. Philippines and Guatemala.


I went off on a research tangent in my Computer Encyclopedia and to me a long time to find any clarity on the subject of “Alpha Theory.”

I do this, I will study a phrase or behavior until I get some chunked down clarity on the subject. Until I can understand a concept in simplify in simple terms.

What happened? Why am I talking about Alpha Theory. Last night I was saying that I consider the Islamic or maybe the Arab world working on a more overtly macho level. They dominate the females, and males dominate or try to dominate the other males. I said to a guy,

“Saddam in the leader or figurehead for the Islamic world.”

It is Alpha Theory…. If you have a group of wolves. One will emerge as the leader of the pack.

The man said,

“I do not believe in this.”

That is simple and irrefutable, but lacks the natural idea that someone can dominate you and it really exist. I always think of the very huge football players on my dorm floor. It was fun to talk to them, but in the end you always remembered that they could swat a smaller guy like a fly or mosquito. They was naturally dominant. I could maybe dominate them mentally, but in the end that threat of violence was an equalizer.

I really think that Saddam and Usa Bin Laden are nothing but BIG DOGS or leaders of a group that is only controlled by violence. The more violent, and the more willing you are to enforce the violence the more a person is capable of being the leader in lots of Muslim societies. This seems to hold for the Clerics also, they hold a lot of their positions by having their follower incited to kill the other clerics.

But as a strategy to stop the violence of the middle east and terrorist you need to remove the leaders. If you remove one, there will be another. But after awhile th idea is to replace the leader with person that has power given to him or her by the people. That is democracy. But there is still this alpha theory going one.

Alpha is the first letter of the Greek Alphabet. Therefore as I understand this it means the FIRST. So the alpha theory means that one will be the first. All movies and westerns, and violence shows, and such are about the conflict between good and bad, and who gets the girl. In the end it is also about who is top dog. I am amazed at the intentional or non-intentional desire to keep this type of thought out of conversations. Of course I could just stand up and bang my head on the table and get the proof, but then people would cower and be submissive and walk away. It is sort of a control issue, and to ignore it is to allow a dominate alpha person to control you life. Whether overtly or covertly. Aggressively or passively a person can control another person. This is often a very good thing, it is NOT bad. It is human nature.

So to remember where I stand in the pecking order is to know my safe level of interaction with people. I wrote something a while back to myself on this and think I found it. This link will eventually work.

Democracy still allows for the Alpha Male or the Alpha Female to emerge. The idea works much more subtle, but still works. I think about this every time I am afraid or cowering. I do the cower thing to let them think they another is dominating sometimes, and some time because I am really afraid and know it is the best idea. But in most cases this is still a premeditate concept and sort on the cold side of my head and not the warm side of my head. Maybe from the shadow of myself. Good guy - bad boy sort of debate in the inner mind of myself. Now is all that rambling didn’t give you a head ache. Nothing will..


There is a guy and a girl that met on this beach. The man is about 45 and the woman is about 35 years old. They both sit on the beach daily and talk, then at night they sit and eat dinner together. They are both sociable, warm, and have met various groups of people on the beach. So they do know a lot of people on the beach and are not alone in anyway or dependent upon the other.

It is nice to see relationships start and blossom. This one has a time limit almost of 1 month or until the man goes back to work. Each of them has a single hut on the beach and are right next to each other.

This is a liberal world with most of the traveler and tourist and hard to see any religious or moral restraints that impinge upon their lifestyles. People for good or bad are able to do as they wish. I have been watching this relationship since I arrived at Palolem beach. Thinking they were an item, but I am not a kid and do not go around teasing or chiding as I may have when I was younger.

But yesterday I broached on the subject. So what’s up with your girl. He said,

“We are just friends, she is very independent.”

I said,

“She is independent.”

He said,

“It is good.”

I think he is saying the right thing and trying to allow her to be independent, but I can tell in the back of his mind that he is very frustrated. He has done what he thinks are all the right things. Treated her with respect, listened and tried to be a gentleman in his actions. But in the end this guy did not want to be just friends, he wanted a little more romance. I know that he learned this the other night when a lot of the traveler went out and got drunk. He returned back home late and night and woke her up to try to make her laugh. But was shut down, and told to go to bed, so there was a boundary he crossed, and she did not tolerate a jolly time by him at all.

I told him,

“The USA has a whole country full of independent women.”

Paused, then said,

“They are so independent they do not need men.”

I see a generation of men that have learned the new rules, and they have learned to respect women. This is good and correct. The sad part is they have learned to not have respect for themselves. This man has continued on hoping if he behaved and did all the right things the girl would respect him and care for him.

To me this is a sad story of independence gone astray. She has 35 and 1/3 rules that he obeys perfectly. Why does a person sit around obeying or listening to rules of another person without having some rules of his own? He is no a rule maker and does not try to enforce any rules on her. I would like to walk up and slap him side the head and say,

“The girl has not met you half way.”

She is independent and it is her way or the highway. This is fine and she has the right to do as she wished. But let her be alone and get on with your life. He is now talking very little with her, and starting to make a lot more friends along the beach and wandering around more. But he tried so hard and forgot to have respect for himself.

There is another couple next door that is just the opposite. The male makes all the decisions and the girl tails along. This is sort of out of balance, but it works and they live together and they are happy.


There is a circle to make here on the beach. I can start out from my Hotel, then go out the back to the road, and slowly follow it back to the beach where I walk on the beach back to my room. I take about 4-5 laps a day trying to find something to occupy my time or my mind. I just got back from a night time lap. I normally do not make them at night. Early morning or just before sunset is the best time to make a lap. People walking around and things happening. It to me is a good idea to walk the area of anyplace a lot. The more you walk the area, the more you can pick up on subtle parts of the culture. Small signs, or where the schools are located, or where the cows go. I just learned that on the beach at night all the dogs sleep. They even sleep in groups some of the time. There is a group of about 8 in a pile as I walked back. Not a pile, but a close knit grouping of dogs. Make you remember they used to run in packs. But this is something small you learn as you roam around. This is the local culture and the dogs are the burglar alarms for the area. They will bark in the event of trouble.

I slowly learn faces and name also by walking around and saying hello to the locals. They start to see me enough that I am familiar and more then just a dollar sign to them. There are a few that I recognize very well and am starting small conversations.


My Nephew Brad got a Deer in the first hour of Deer Season.

He is 16 and a great accomplishment. Not that this type of activity makes people happy. But this is real life folks.

I have teased all my nephew about or saying to them,

"Let go kill the bear."

I have never killed a bear, but what I am talking about is becoming a man. I am not sure if Brad feels good or bad now. But he does know one more fact of life.

I congratulate you Brad.