If you cross the creek from Mumbai southwards, you are in the adjoining district of Raigad with its headquarters at Alibaug. The ‘u’ in Alibaug is an English mystery and that ‘u’ appears in many names without much justification. The entire district was earlier known as Alibaug. This part of Maharashtra has seen a lot of history with rulers from within as well as the Europeans. At least in one case the rulers claim African ancestry as we will see as we go along.
There are a few places having regular ferry service from Mumbai to this district. Revas is the northernmost but does not connect to Mumbai. It is used mainly for the areas adjoining Navi Mumbai and other places south of Thane Creek. You can see below the jetty and the places across the creek
The mangrove here are healthy and thick. Did not see much of plastic menace here.
Consequently, this area appears to be a major spawning ground for shrimps, prawns and crabs.
What you see below are chicken legs. Not the ones that you eat. What you eat are the thighs, not the legs. These are the legs proper on which the chicken run. The chicken shop in your neighbourhood would be having a problem in disposing off these discards. Not here. They are an excellent bait for Mud Crabs.
The preparations are under way for a crabbing expedition, the most professional that I have seen.
The boats seen below will be used. On a smaller scale one can even use the shore at high tide.
The Revas port is approached through a swath of mixed wetland and mangrove. The area produces a wise variety of fruits, nuts, tubers and other produce typical of Konkan region. A smpling of those itms isfound here on the jetty for sale.
The next one is the jetty at Mandva. It is reflective of the Mumbai culture. The resturant on the jetty serves this and that says it all.
Mandva is in the Sasawane village panchayat and a about 15 Kms from Alibaug town.
It has a rudimentary Lighthouse.
And this structure up on the hill, looking like a water tank which it is not.
You will see a number of sailing and motor boats around here. Most of Mumbai’s moneybags have holiday homes and their boats here. They go incognito. Dont expect to meet them on the passenger ferry, you silly.
On your way from Mandva to Alibaug you can take diversion and visit the village of one of India’s topmost sculptor- Vinayak Pandurang Karmarkar and have a look at the private museum maintained by his descendents. The place is called Awas, Sasawane.
Gandhiji himself is claimed to have sat for this portrait.
Many Englishmen and the Indian royalty are seen among the works of art.
When you come out you might find this buffalo in the compound eating grass.
No. It cannot eat. It is one of the sculptures in stone.
PART II OF ‘AROUND ALIBAUG’ FOLLOWS.