With Romeo Das and Priti Das, in Richards Bay & St. Lucia Bhangazi forest and seashore
I spent five beautiful days in Richards Bay, at the invitation of Mr Romeo Das and his wife Mrs Priti Das. We visited together Lucia Bhangazi Forest and Seashore, the first two days. On the 23rd of February I gave a presentation and I met TATA Employees in Richards Bay; then I met the Grantleigh secondary school students. On the 24th of February I visited Ting-A-Ling Pre Primary School. I also met the Mayor of Rihards Bay, thanks to Mr Romeo Das.
The Consul General of India, Mr Raghunathan, introduced me to Mr Das. After our talk by phone, he invited me to come and visit Richards Bay, where he is working in TATA Steel Company, as MD. As per our talk, he told me he will come and pick me up from Durban on the 21st of February 2015. It was afternoon when I met him the first time in front of the Indian Council General Office in Darban.
Firstly I looked at him: he is two meters tall, with moustache and his deep eyes welcomed me. His wife, Mrs Priti Das, is also a friendly person. Their first approach was really nice. Then we went a long two hours drive which took us to Richard’s Bay. When we arrived, he showed me around Richards Bay, then he took me to his house. The trip was a little tiring, but Priti Boudi (his wife) prepared coffee for us upon arrival. Their house is very well decorated and very close to the bay, from the balcony of the house I could see the sea. It made me quite happy to be in such a wonderful place.
I thought I wanted to do some fishing, but then Mr Das told me he would like to drop me at TATA Steel Guest House, where I can freshen up and after 1,5 hours he will come and pick me up for diner. At 8 o’clock he came and pick me up from the TATA Guest House. Mr Das wife, Priti Boudi (my sister in law) prepared a nice meal, so many things, she fed me too much. Saturday is their vegetarian day, so she prepared many vegetarian dishes. She is a very good cook, she prepared dal, aalu posto, aalu, jhinga and bori together with curry, boiled corolla (I made a special post for Mrs Priti Das, you can read and see pics here). It reminded me that my mother used to prepare some corolla, but I did not like it then. But now it tasted like home. It was a very nice diner. After diner we were sitting and sharing and talking, it all made me feel so close to that family, it seemed to me like I know them for a long time. It was late and I was really sleepy, so Romeo Da and Boudi took me back to the guest house.
The next day, Sunday, in the morning Romeo Da came and picked me up for breakfast. Afterwards, we decided to go to Saint Lucia Bangazi Forest and Seashore.
It was slowly raining and the sky was full of clouds. We first went to the South Indian Temple and after we prayed we continued. The forest is 108 km far, so we went by car approximately 250 km way go and come back. The rain forest villagers make lot of craft of design and they are selling on the roadside.
Then we continued the road, we crossed a bridge over a river with hundreds of hipos, where tourists usually go by ship for a trip. We passed the river and we arrived at the Lucia Market, where we put fuel to Mr Das car and some fish fry and food for the way. Villagers have a beautiful colourful market on the roadside with onions, potatoes, tomatoes, mangos, avocado, bananas, papayas and also pineapples. Finally we arrived at Bangazi Gate, where we needed to buy the ticket for the car, entrance 170 Rant. Then we entered the forest, where we first saw two wild forest pigs and later a group of buffaloes, lot of deers. After we found many monkeys. The forest is very drenched and beautiful, lot of grass, all animals are eating grass happily. After 20 km forest we arrived at the seashore, where there are beautiful bungalows (guest houses). Romeo told me that in Easter and in November, December, January, people come here for holidays (tourists as well). I enjoyed the nice view. I met a man who was there with his wife, catching fish. It was raining. I saw his tend, although it is small, both of them can fit. While Romeo Da was having a long talk with a friend from America, by phone, I was listening to some story from Boudi. Then we went back to Richard’s Bay. In the evening, Bodi prepared a very nice meal, some Hilsa fish fry, dal and some fried potatoes. After that, they dropped me again at the guest house. My second day at Richard’s Bay was a beautiful experience. 23 FEB 2015, Richards Bay, South Africa, It is a wonderful time with Romeo Kumar Das Dada and Boudi at there place. Dada and Boudi living here last three and half years in Richards bay town. They are showing different places and having beautiful time all together. He is working as a CEO of Tata Steel in Richards bay. South Africa. — with Priti Das in Richards Bay, KwaZulu-Natal.