It was the final leg of our Tour to these wonderful islands. The next morning, we would be flying back to Hyderabad, via Chennai. It was a day to explore the local sightseeing at Port Blair. The local market was Aberdeen Market, but there was not much to shop around, though we did shop for a small figurine of the Jharawas, because I was rather too fascinated by this tribe. Isn’t it a wonder that such a Tribe still exists even in the 21st Century, when the World has reached into such a technological advancement? But I was lucky to see them in flesh and blood. I still can’t believe my luck.
We first headed to Samudrika Marine Museum which was on Haddo Road. A must visit, especially to the students, and all those who are interested to know the about the variety of species of fishes and corals in and around these Islands. We spend an hour here looking at all the exhibits on display. It was a good place to know about the marine life of the region. A trip should not merely be entertaining, but it should also be educative.
Our next visit was to the Science Centre on Corbyn's Cove Road. It was more of a student affair, but worth visiting. For a while, we felt as if we were some school students, curiously looking, reading and knowing about each exhibit. But, there were some interesting facts about these islands, its history and its anthropology that we learnt through the displays, especially, about the Jharawa Tribe. About the total number of islands in this archipelago, how many were inhabited and how many were still Virgin Islands, far away from human settlement.
From there, we went to Corbyn’s Cove Beach. Spent a while there, watching people enjoy the speed boats, and it was evening by then.
We went to the Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex. It was a lovely place. The view of the surrounding city lit in lights was a beautiful sight. Every Sunday evening, the local police conduct a Band Music there. They played lovely old songs on the flute. It was sheer magic in the air. We sat there looking in wonder and amazement. We spent the evening in complete bliss. And around 09.00 PM we left the place with heavy hearts that from tomorrow we shall miss all the serenity and beauty of these lovely islands.
I must tell you once again about our Driver, Mr Dilip, a young chap who showed us around during our Trip, with so much of patience and perseverance. He deserves special thanks from us for his dedicated service. I wish I had taken his picture to post it here. Goodness, kindness and patience should always be rewarded. God bless him and his family.
There were still many islands which we could not see, because of paucity of time. I wish we had seen them all. But we wish to plan another trip to see the Islands which we could not see during this trip.
Early next morning, our Air India flight was scheduled at 08.00 AM from Veer Savarkar International Airport. So we had to check in at 07.00 AM.
We left the Guest House and reached the Airport. Bidding Bye is really the toughest part of any journey, but we had to. You start belonging to the place you visit. You feel a strange bonding. As our Air India flight took off, and we touched the clouds, we left the lovely islands below, wondering if we would be able to make it again. But the sweet memories shall always remain etched in our hearts.
And before I wind up, this sojourn, I would like to reproduce a beautiful quote which I read:
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”
― Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad/Roughing It.
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