During my last Bihu holidays, I, along with my parents, planned a trip to Kolkata. I was greatly excited. I was dreaming about the places we would be visiting. My friend Kavya and his parents were also to accompany us. Finally, the day came and we flew to Kolkata. I enjoyed a lot as it was my first air journey. I took the window seat and was greatly excited when our plane was flying amidst the clouds.
During our stay, we visited different places, including the Victoria Memorial, about which I had read in one of my school textbooks. On our return journey, unknowingly, Kavya and I entered the plane’s cockpit. We were scared to see the machines there. We tried to run away from there, but the pilots stopped us. They talked with us affectionately and also gave us small gifts.
On the last day of our stay at Kolkata, we planned to go to Digha. We hired a car and started on our journey towards Digha, early in the morning. I have not seen a sea before, but I planned to do a lot of things there. On the way, our parents decided to go to Mandarmani, instead of Digha. The name Mandarmani didn’t sound too exciting to me, but we went anyway. We reached the place at noon and I finally saw the sea.
We took a ride in a bike-like vehicle that took us all closer to the sea. The vehicle took us a few kilometres into the sandy seashore and dropped us on the beach to enjoy. I saw the waves crashing into the seashore and going back calmly, to be back again in a few seconds. We also saw a few small crabs and were scared. But slowly, our fears vanished. Holding our parents’ hands, we started going into the sea. The waves of water touched our feet. We were enjoying it so much that we forgot about the crabs. We proceeded further into the sea. Now, we were facing the big waves, which soaked us completely. Some of them were so large that we had salt water in our mouths. We played with the waves, not bothering about time. When our parents decided to go back, we came to know that we had been playing in the sea for more than four hours. Still, we didn’t want to go back. Finally, when we walked back, on the sandy seashore, I spotted a star-like shape. I requested my father to dig it out. Initially, he refused, but as I insisted, he gave in. To our great surprise, we found a small starfish. Later, we found two more such starfishes. I brought all three of them with me. Later, at home, my father used some chemical to preserve them. I presented one to Kavya and one to my school. The third one is still with me.
The same vehicle later took us a few kilometers on the seashore to the other side. There, we saw many fishermen. They were collecting fishes with the help of boats. There were a lot of big and small fishes of different colours. I also saw some red crabs. I have never seen so many fishes before.
From there, we returned. We took a bath and had seafood for lunch. By then it was 6 p.m. The name Mandarmani will now remain etched in my memories forever.