Veni, Vidi, Vizag

This is a record of when Cheapo went to Vizag couple of years ago…..

The Cheapo wanted a break, The Cheapo needed a break. You see his left hand and shoulder had retired hurt (yep, they have gone back into their Quit Cheapo movement and have stopped working), and Cheapo was all hopped up on injections. Cheapo was sad about being treated as the human pincushion by the medical people, and so Cheapo went to Vizag.

Now literary la di dahs talk a lot about the Sisyphean pathos of Russian literature and Greek tragedies; they talk about the futility of man’s endeavor against the Fates; they talk of sadness, of misery, of depression of the impotency of human emotions when god and nature herself conspire against him.

Cheapo laughs at them with a massive sense of superiority.

Those Greek and Russian playwrites and philosophers know nothing about suffering, know nothing about reaching the nadir of misery.

Cheapo knows.

Like Dante, Cheapo also went through hell.


8. 30 PM: Ohh no, there are old ladies around. They are going to bug Cheapo about his berth any time now, just you wait.

8. 40 PM: There it is, they asked as per usual. The Cheapo refused. Let’s face it, with one functioning hand; he is more paralytic and handicapped than them.

8.55 PM: There’s a spawn of Beelzebub. It’s looking at Cheapo. Its planning something, Cheapo can feel it in his marrow.

9.05 PM: Yep, the spawn has started calling for its own personal hellhounds. It sounds like an orchestra compromising Cacophonix, a pride of cackling hyena, a group of bullfrogs with laryngitis, and a battalion of Himesh.

9.20 PM: Inner peace, Cheapo must have inner peace.

9. 45 PM: For the love of Belphegor, stop that cackling!!!

10.15 PM: There is an uncouth savage around here somewhere who is playing his radio and it’s on loop with a hideous monstrosity of a song.

10.45 PM: What would Jason Bourne do? Well, he would beat the radioactive guy to death with a toothpick. Cheapo does not have a toothpick.

00.45 PM: Mehahahaha, thou shalt soweth what thou reapeth…..err, no that can’t be right…..thou shalt reapeth what soweth……The savahe just woke up in a hot panic stricken mode after the volume in his radio thingy went up.

01:00 AM: Ah, silence, peace, serenity, heaven.

01.35 AM: Fuuuuuuuuucccccckkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk, spawn of Beelzebub has started again. Is there a law against punching babies??

02.00 AM: The Cheapo shall not punch a baby, The Cheapo shall not punch a baby, The Cheapo shall not punch a baby, The Cheapo shall not punch a baby, The Cheapo shall not punch a baby………

02. 30 AM: How can something make a noise continuously for so long?? For the love of Vasco da Gama, woman, take care of your spawn!!!

02.35 AM: There is a saying that prayers and meditation helps one to attain a state of Nirvana.

So does Vodka

Unfortunately the hypocritical Indians frown upon people who board public transportation after partaking the stuff, so it seems genocide is the only path left to The Cheapo.

02: 40 AM: Ah, Mrs Beelzebub has taken the spawn away somewhere to try to come it down, undoubtedly promising a future full of fire, brimstone, hellhounds, sacrificed virgins and Bangladeshis.

03. 00 AM: Ah, everyone has buggered off to the land of Morpheus. Silence reigns supreme.

That French philosopher was correct – HELL IS OTHER PEOPLE.


07.30 AM: The spawn is sleeping without a care in the fucking world.

So, as you can see, the journey couldn’t have been worse.

And it was bad also because hopped up as he was on pain killers, the Cheapo needed peace and quiet.



So, you must be wondering, why Vizag? Its not a historical site and there’s nothing to write about its cuisine. So why Vizag?

Cheapo will tell you why – its because apparently you can do rudimentary sailing at Rushikonda beach, you can go cave loitering to see stalactites and stalagmites in Borra, you can practice archery at a tribal village in Araku and you can go into an actual decommissioned submarine of the Indian Navy in RK Beach.

So Cheapo reached Vizag and went to meet the dude who is the contact person for the Sailing Association of Vizag and guess what he told Cheapo, go on guess….

He told Cheapo that all the sail boats have gone off to Hyderabad for a couple of weeks to take part in some event.


The old Cheapo would have been devastated, would have whined and moped and cried and bitched.

The new Cheapo thought Que Sera Sera. But seeing Cheapo’s disappointment, the guy introduced him to a wee laddie who is apparently already a member of the national junior surfing team. His parents are poor fishpeople; he goes to school, can speak English more fluently than 90% of Cheapo’s colleagues, and is quite good at his sport –he showed Cheapo his prizes, including a brand new American surfboard which he had won in a competition in Pondicherry in the summer.

It was a pleasure meeting the wee dude.

It was time to get back to the hotel; Cheapo was bugging a vendor about a bhutta (corn on the cob), when all of a sudden the sky fell on their heads.

All the rolly polly pot bellied Bong tourists – probably East Bengalis – started running helter skelter in an extremely undignified manner.

Cheapo don’t do undignified manner.

He saw a fisherman’s thatch – a place on the beach where they hang out – calmly walked over there, saw that a few of them were playing a game of dice (with pebbles), plonked himself down and started chatting with them

It was an awesome way to spend an hour or so

Not only did Cheapo make new friends but he got to witness one of the most awesome natural phenomena out there – a storm on a ocean….the sky was dark, the rain was pounding, the surfs were high and the lightning…oh comrades the lightning……….

Yep, life ain’t all bad.


The next day was all about the sight seeing. The Cheapo had booked a day tour with the APTDC.

The bus took Cheapo to

Simhachalam Temple (nothing great architecturally, plus Cheapo doesn’t do religion) 100_6348 100_6349

Thotlakonda (a Buddhist site, now in ruins),

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Kailashgiri  (toy train and ropeway)

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Naval museum


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Boat ride

100_6571 100_6581 100_6584 100_6587 100_6597 100_6602 100_6616  100_6623



You see, this time Cheapo had a plan.

And the plan involved a speedboat. The Cheapo wanted the salty sea air flowing through his beard.

And it was a fantastic experience.

It was so fantastic, that the Cheapo forgot all about his own body and tried to be a king of the world.

But since he had just 1 functioning hand, there was only ever going to be one outcome.

Fast speedboat, high surfs, Cheapo in the air.

And as we all know, what goes up must come down.

Swimming, pulling, and…………. on part of the speedboat operating fisherfolk…… initially much consternation and subsequently much hilarity ensued.

Cheapo will let you on 2 things.

1. The ocean is a dirty place
2. Sand sticks to the most inconvenient places


Memorable day indeed.

Next day turned out to be even more.

It was a day that almost didn’t happen; Cheapo was late to the railways station and could get on the train literally only at the last minute.

But he sure was glad that he did – it was a fabulous journey.

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Through tunnels and waterfalls with the mountains on one side and the valleys on the other.

Upon reaching Araku, Cheapo was taken to the tribal museum and had a bout of archery.

Suffice to say that he sucked – though the official reason for his suckiness was the lame hand. He could not even hold the bow up properly, how could he shoot? (Even if he had 3 hands, he still probably would have sucked, but let’s keep that between ourselves)


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Archery was followed by a bout of tribal music and dance.

And here the Cheapo had a problem.

Not about the music and dance by the tribals – but about the city girls’ overexuberance in joining in the festivities. Look, you dance on your own, no problems – but the tribal girls are professionals who are performing the dance of their people, their heritage, appreciate that and respect them. Just because you are rich does not mean you get to barge in on anything.


Anyway, Cheapo is a grumpy old sod, so who cares what he thinks.

The best part of the day was yet to come though.

The Cheapo was taken into a cave.

A cave full of stalactites and stalagmites – Borra Caves

It was a beautiful journey, and though the Cheapo huffed and the Cheapo puffed, he enjoyed the descent. He felt like Virgil.

Being the proud possessor of an extremely fertile imagination, Cheapo met a dragon, King Kong, the Alien, the Hulk, a python, a yeti, the Great Wall and a giant dildo.

100_6704 Giant dildo 100_6709 Dragon100_6725 King Kong 100_6737 The Alien100_6746 Yeti 100_6754 The Hulk (on the right) 100_6758 A Python 100_6770 The Great Wall of China


It was Cheapo’s Adventures in a magical Wonderland, just without any silly bugger muttering about his hats, any wascally wabbits and nobody inviting Cheapo to a  tea party.

No cookies for Cheapo

But at least he got to keep his head.


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