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Up early for the pre-arranged 300 rupee boat trip on an outrigger up the creek. Monkeys, kingfishers, cormorants, squacco herons, little waders that looked like knots and numbers of other unidentifiable species sat on the branches or strutted on the banks. But when the boatman unexpectedly picked up a plastic bag and began to throw fish guts into the water, the sky was suddenly full of birds of prey. Flocks of Indian sea-eagles, fish eagles and black kites swooped down to snatch the offal from the water no more than a few feet from the boat. What a breath-taking spectacle! Magnificent. We shall certainly do this again before we leave Palolem.

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The blue and white cottage was only available for three days so this morning we moved along the beach to the unlikely sounding Cafe del Sol. This cocohut is a little more basic and consequently much cheaper. It’s constructed around two coconut trees which go up through the roof, one a foot away from the toilet with a procession of big brown ants moving up and down it. The fan and shower work, though, and the veranda is right in the beach with a terrific view of the setting sun. We’ll give it a few days and decide whether to move upmarket again.

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