Sailing down the Konkan coast in a tired, leaky old tub.
By Fiacre Banks
April 18, 2018 8:01pm CST
I came across this picture tonight of an old tub called the Konkan Shakti. She was a magnificently worn and troubled old girl when I sailed on her from Bombay down to Panjim in 1978. I travelled deck class. I spread my Gulmarg blanket on the crowded deck and lay there surrounded by seasick land lubbers as the creaking boat heaved southwards through heavy seas for twenty four hours. All afternoon I lay under a roasting hot sun, with children and their mothers fretting everywhere, the boat pitching and rolling. The night was magnificent with the sky all alive and mobile with stars. When I was the only one left awake a calm fell on the ocean. Soon there was only the sound of the boat cutting through the water, and the distant, muffled hum of the engine. I could smell the saltiness of the sea interrupted at times by waves of dusty, aromatic air carrying out invisibly from the shore a few miles away. I wouldn’t sell that memory for a million pounds. The boat’s current status is listed as “decommissioned or lost”!
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