Goa Masala: An anthology of stories by Canadian Goans

 
9789380739045: Goa Masala: An anthology of stories by Canadian Goans
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Canada has become home to a growing number of Goans. Tracing their roots to the former Portuguese colony (now India's smallest State), they have come from varied destinations. What experiences have shaped their background? What memories do they carry with them? This anthology captures their stories, fiction and non-fiction, and reminiscences. First published in Canada, *Goa Masala* is an initiative of the 55PGA (55 Plus Goan Association). It is now being published in Goa itself. In both cases, the goal is to keep memories of another time alive; a task specially crucial amidst a community believed to have one of the highest per capita out-migration rates in the world. Essays include non-fiction, memoirs and creative writing set among the "Africander" community of Goans in Africa, stories from Goa itself, adjustment issues in North America, details about life in Burma, and things your children should be definitely knowing more about.

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Contributions from Alick Alphonso, Leslie Andrade, Ben Antao, Eddie D'Cruz, Connie D'Souza, Jenny de Mello, Tim de Mello, Anthony DeSouza, Elma DeSouza, Eric De Souza, Marina De Souza, Joan DoRosario, Olencio Fernandes, Rudy Fernandes, Al Lobo, Edmund Lobo, Elma Lobo, Muriel Lucas, Braz Menezes, Paul Nazareth, Pliny X. Noronha, George Pereira, Maurice Pereira, Alice Pinto, Betty Quinn, Juliet Rebello, Melba Remedios, Alex Rodrigues, Armand Rodrigues, Lourdino Rodrigues, Rudi Rodrigues, Lisette Saldanha, Manuel Sequeira and Xavier Sequeira. Original Canadian editorial team: Ben Antao, Alick Alphonso, Joan DoRosario, Eric De Souza, George Pereira, Al Lobo and Rudi Rodrigues. Design and art direction: Rudi Rodrigues. Cover: Detail from a painting by Rudi Rodrigues of a market scene in Mapusa, Goa, commissioned by Joe and Bonita Lobo, Canada. To the leadership of the 55PGA, including Rudy Fernandes, Juliet Rebello and Al Mathias, whose dogged persistence was crucial in securing the funding necessary to get this off the ground with the New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP) grant. In addition, for their follow-up push to get reticent Goans to put pen to paper and participate in the short story contest, our source for the content of this book. This book turned into a reality thanks specially to Ben Antao, Alick Alphonso, Al Lobo, Joan DoRosario and Eric De Souza, some of the members of the 55PGA Book Club who not only contributed by submitting their own stories to the contest but also volunteered to edit and polish some of the other submissions that are featured in this book. It flowed out of the work of the participants of the short story contest. Those who tried and submitted stories as well as those who did not quite feel ready to submit.

Review:

NEW BOOK IN GOA---'GOA MASALA', BY GOANS LIVING IN CANADA. . . Someone handed me a copy the other day, and a couple of names in the inner flyleaf rang bells---Fred Noronha's GOA 1556, and Fr. Delio Mendonca @ XCHR. I was about to consign Goa Masala to the lower shelf (since at the moment Ms. Selma Carvalho's DIASPORA book is getting a lot of attention) when our 'reading hour' approached for wife Germana---who by now has become a listener rather than reader, but retains her fondness for 'Goan Stories'. As a Canadian I was also just a bit intrigued by 'Goan's writing in Canada'. Opening the volume ad lib, I started with Marina De Souza's two pieces---ALL GOA VILLAGE FESTIVAL' and NEIGHBORS' QUARRELS. Since I have had nearly fifty years auditory association with Konkani language I am (while not by any means 'fluent') able to navigate (in reading) for Konkani words and phrases. Dear Germana is wholly enthralled by Ms. Marina's sallies in Konkani. As victim of 'text-editor syndrome' I would be inclined to blue-pencil some of Marina's English idiom, but dear wife insists that her bracketed Konkani covers any multitude of English idiomatic sins. Interesting slant on Literary Values, to be considered in this type of Collection---something that I had not really been aware of before. --Goanet, Sept 13, 2010

Canadian Goans muse over the days they knew, reminisce about other times 'Goa Masala', a new anthology contains essays by Goans based in Canada. The aim is to keep alive memories of another time; a task specially crucial amidst a community believed to have one of the highest per capita out-migration rates in the world. * * * Thousands of Goans have shifted to the cold climes of Canada, but their hearts carry a place for Goa, Africa, Burma and such places they earlier called home. This point get strongly made in a new anthology, to be released in Goa this weekend (Sunday, August 29, 2010), comprising writing from this expat group. Called 'Goa Masala', the volume was first published by the Toronto-based A Plus Publishing, headed by former Goa journalist Ben Antao. Now, to be released in a Goa edition on Sunday at Margao's Ravindra Bhavan -- along with Selma Carvalho's 'Into The Diaspora Wilderness', another well-received diaspora-related book -- this anthology contains 41 essays including short stories and reminiscences. It gives an insight into the Goa of the past, which has changed in some ways and continues in others. Stories titled 'Baba puta' (by the Calangute-born Alick Alphonso), 'The landlord's son' and 'Evil eye' (by Aldona-schooled Eddie D'Cruz) talk about Goan life. Jenny D'Mello, British by birth, explains what it means to be "married to a Goan". Her husband of many years, Tim D'Mello of Anjuna and formerly East Africa, narrates his own encounter with learning Konkani virtually from scratch, and why he believes it is important for Goans to keep in touch with their language. Other essays echo the challenges and fun of growing up in Goa and schooling here. Some narrate a neighbourly quarrel conducted using comical literally-translated "Konklish", debate the logic of arranged marriages, and talk about the travails faced by expat Goans at different points of history due to changing fortunes and situations. Africa obviously still claims stake to a significant part of the expat Goan heart. Probably more so here, as this book was put together by the 55PGA (55 Plus Goan Association), some of whose members lived through the very times when migration to that continent was the hot favourite among the Goan global diaspora. In a piece filled with detail and emotion, Xavier Sequeira, whose father was a pioneer in the tiny Tanganyika town of Iringa -- built during the 1890s as a German Army base -- narrates his experiences in an elephant hunt. "I felt no elation as I saw the proud majestic matriarch crumple with my single bullet," he writes. But this was no case of wanton killing by the logic of those times. Sequeira met with Sonny Vaz, of Moshi in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro, and Vaz's brother's farm next to Serengeti was finding jumbos marauding its corn fields. Yet, the tragedy involved in the unfortunate man-animal interaction comes across strongly in the author's words. Manuel "Manny" Sequeira talks of his experiences of adjusting to life in North America, while Lisette Saldanha tells a fascinating story from Tanga, Tanzania in 1938. Saldanha's essay is about a seven-year-old coping with the sudden death of a father, a reality the young lad could barely comprehend in times life expectancy was low and parents dying while still in their forties was not very unusual. Bombay-educated artist Rudi Rodrigues has a story titled 'A candle for St. Anthony'. It has a family on holiday in Goa, and deals with the theme of how faith in the saint who is believed to help find lost objects influences diverse members of a particular household. Former junior engineer Lourdino Rodrigues of Orlim, Salcete, tells a spooky tale about a charming girl met at a dance, with a typically Goan twist. Armand Rodrigues describes how Goans struggle to cope with the ... --PRLog

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Ben Antao (Editor)
Published by Goa,1556 and A Plus Publishing Toronto (2010)
ISBN 10: 9380739044 ISBN 13: 9789380739045
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