Scott saved up his energy all day Monday December 10th so he could take me to Thalassa aka Mariketty’s Place, the Greek restaurant with the most amazing view, in Vagator last night. High up on a cliff overlooking a pocket beach at the base of a mountain…..palms swaying in the seabreeze that was keeping us cliffdwellers quite comfortable with no A-C. We both endured the 30 minute taxi ride (it’s always a harrowing experience of stop ‘n’ starts to avoid wild dogs, cows, bikes, motorcycles, pedestrians, and to pass trucks and slower vehicles…..driving over speedbumps is painful for Scott no matter how careful the driver takes them).
We knew this would be an upscale hipster scene as soon as we left the dusty trash strewn road and entered the restaurant’s gate. A high end clothing boutique in a tent replete with crystal chandeliers a la our friend Raymond Waiteswas the first feast for the eyes. Silken sari fabrics used in fetching contemporary styles all hanging by color groups…..blues into greens over here, reds n pinks, crisp whites, sumptuous golds. Scott and I moved on through a narrow corridor that had personal beach hut living quarters opening out to a large plein air dining terrace. The place was abuzz with well heeled Europeans and locals. Aneel, our friend and gracious host, had made reservations for us. Mariketty is his best friend and he is godfather to her child.
Another treat at Thalassa was their dog is Marlon Brando ‘s brother! That was fun to see Marlon’s twin. There were also local strays that are everywhere. I plan to write a separate post about the wild dogs one of these days but I digress. We were given an excellent and very romantic table with a perfect view of the setting sun. Our drinks and food came so fast we didn’t believe we were in Goa anymore! Both Ivan the assistant manager and Mariketty herself came over to talk to us to see that we were all right. Later when our driver picked us up he told us he was expecting us an hour later because the place is reknowned not only for its food but for it being so popular the wait is very long and locals in the know frequently call their orders in ahead of time. Our angel Aneel discreetly had paved the way for Scott’s ease and we are grateful.
The rest of the night was a fitful one. The past few days we’ve been trying to get a handle on the diuretics that were prescribed for Scott’s ascites problem and tweaking his pain meds so that he can have less fogginess. He hasn’t been wanting to take so many pills and who can blame him? Unfortunately the result of ” lack of coverage” –albeit self chosen– was a wide-awake Scott with high anxiety from 3:30am onward. After three panicky hours (up down inside outside hot cold yes no i don’t know) Scott insisted he needed to keep on walking so we slowly made our way on foot down our unpaved rutted road for a pre-breakfast beach boogie.
Oh, the things we take for granted. Like being able to walk back the way you came without having to stop every twenty feet to rest for ten minutes… or having to pour water over your hat because the meds make your skin so sensitive you feel like Edward Cullen being burned up in the sunlight. At one point we were standing knee deep in the warm ocean water when I got the eerie sense that Scott might be silently thinking of breaking away from me, plunging under the next big wave, embracing death as he has embraced life so whole heartedly. I shivered as I gazed out at the breakers rolling in. We stood there, neither of us saying a word. The moment passed and we managed the arduous ( for Scott) return up the beach to get to our taxi meeting place for the short ride back to Sur La Mer. My heart skipped a beat later that day when in a moment of frustration he accused me of never having taken the time to walk in his shoes and feel what it feels like to want to drown yourself and end it all sooner. Your shoes are too big for me, darling, but I slipped them on today without knowing they were yours.