Sunset Silhouttes in the Sea :)

Trip Start Dec 20, 2010
Trip End Dec 27, 2010

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Flag of India  , Mahārāshtra,
Wednesday, December 22, 2010

*Sandhya, 23.01.11*

Sindhudurg was one of Shivaji's strongest sea forts, just off a very important port of that time, Malvan. The fort is a marvel considering it was offshore, on a small island. The distance can only be traveled fully by boat in high tide; during low tide, the island can only be reached after clambering over a rock zone! The other side of the fort is of course the wide open sea. The entrance to the fort is a well curved sinusoidal affair; if you don't go around the curvy side, you wont know the entrance is there at all! This much is obvious, he efficacy of the fort as a defense outpost; but how life must have been inside the fort is left to imagination. The fort had been plundered so many times and burned aground, that almost all of the erstwhile grand structures are no more. There are still some people who live there, in small houses, but that is about it.

We reached at low tide, and clambered over the rocks alongwith a multitude of humanity that the ferry boats spewed out every few minutes. This throng trying to reach the fort is met head on by a throng heading back from the fort, making for a virtual cacophony of voices at a narrow bottle neck of a strip close to the fort. I wonder how many people fall in this mess each day?
Anyway, the lovely fort and the sea made the photographing kids shutter happy (a la trigger happy!) and as we slowly moved toward the fort, we saw a lot of squishy sea cucumbers, scurrying crabs, a few birds and some green corals (pics?). Mahua was prancing around rocks with admirable ease inspite of her foot :)

We were fort-unate (hee hee sorry, too much time with Geetha!) to be atop a massive parapet on the seaward side when the sun was making up its mind to set. Along the wall to the right we could glimpse the Queen's beach, quite private and undisturbed. In front of us was the blue sea, with the sky just bursting into a flame of orange and yellow as we were leaving the fort. As the boat was taking us back to the mainland, the whole scene was drenched with a sunset colors that were simply awesome. The fiery background made each shape stand out in inky contrast! The fort itself looked like an enormous, randomly constructed shape. A big mid section tapering on either side where the island was trailing off into the sea; coconut trees who looked out over the wall as if attempting to survey the outside world, with their leaves swaying madly to the brisk sea breeze.

Either side of the fort had the sea broken by massive rocks of every shape imaginable, burnt black as if the very water was aflame! Dotted on the landscape were fishing boats coming home. One especially, rowed by hand, silhouetted against the setting sun, refuses to stop swimming before my eyes - one man standing with the oar, two others sitting, all made whole in brilliant molten black. It was like someone was playing with the contrast of this scene, making the background richer and the shadows inkier, until night arrived and the darkness became absolute.

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