Tuesday 18 November 2014

Clevage, cats and fish

If you have visited the fish markets of Goa, then the title would not make your mind wander away. The markets are a 'must see' place if you are keen on experiencing a slice of the Goan way of life and believe me there is more than fish here. Well, if you are a fussy vegetarian who cannot ingest the smells and sights of slaughtered sea creatures, then I suggest you stroll in the beaches and update your Facebook status with sun, sea and sand and of course you spoiling it all with a wide grin! No offence, please.

When I first stepped into the market, the assault on my eyes and senses were incredible. I loved what I saw is an understatement. Of course, the smell was overpowering but so is culture! Fish - big, small, medium, white, yellow, orange, black, and the shapes and the variety was indeed a treat. And added to the fishes, crabs and prawn were the fisherwomen - buxom, garrulous, colourful, gold laden and flowers on their hair. They were a picture to treasure. And some had cleavages that could be mistaken for a tunnel - dark and deep. Some of my friends tell me that the cleavage sells more fish if the customer is a man. Well, do we actually need to hear it to know it! And if someone asks for a discount, then . . . the rest is history!

Oh oh . . . did I also mention cats. They dot the entire market and again we find, striped, plain, dotted, black, brown, white, black & white, brown & white, black & brown - They either sleep, eat or longingly stare at the fish and almost always their wait is rewarded. I must say that the cats are fat and lazy. Each one has a favourite spot at the market which can either be at the foot of the fish monger or the spot where the fish waste are thrown or on the lap of the woman/man. People and cats love fish in equal measure in Goa --- some like it raw while some like it hot!

Mario Miranda's depiction of a fish market in Goa

On one side of the market are men who cut the fish for customers for a price of 20 rupees and often while at the job, they strike a conversation either about fish - the cutting and cooking or about life in general and while the tongue utters the hands cut. Their knives, which is a prized possession makes smooth slices of the fish. Some salivate just by watching the fish being cut - Food like sex is a very personal and intimate act and knowing one's taste is the key to enjoying the process.

This reminds me of the film that I watched this afternoon, A Hundred Foot Journey which discusses the culinary experience of a young and handsome Hassan Kadam who enjoys and savours food that he goes on to becoming a Michelin chef. Every time he held an ingredient, I could see that his senses were aroused and delighted - nothing short of an orgasm. Well, I did say that food and sex were not quite different.

So, when food and sex can be mentioned in the same sentence, why not fish and cleavage (too much of Freudian symbols, I reckon ;) )

Image: Internet


  1. This is funny, Dr. Sus. Food and sex, both primal needs indeed. :) But this is what I love most: "Of course, the smell was overpowering but so is culture!" Although I do love fish (with cleavage or otherwise), I didn't like the "assault" to the senses of fish markets...that is, until I looked at them at a cultural POV. Now I've been to some, both here and recently in Korea. Your post has inspired me to start writing about this same topic. But I must admit, not with the same sense of humor as yours.

    Btw, thanks for visiting TTT. I was off the blogosphere for quite a while, so you didn't miss much actually. :)

  2. "Of course, the smell was overpowering but so is culture!" - That's a quotable quote right there! I love the play of words in this post, with the () at the end the very cherry on top.

  3. What a Post, Frankly saying " Mood Khush Kr Dia" Thanks for sharing this.

  4. Great post Susan.it made m laf..:) .. how r u doin

    I hav been 2 Goa 1c but m visit was limited 2 the beach. And now, after reading ur post i regret not visiting anything else - specially the fish market. More so, the title itself s sooo funny n how u have connected everything ....

    Keep writing n making us laugh :)
    Happy writing



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