Saturday, December 24, 2005
Goan villages in India have densely packed houses separated by alleyways, surrounded by fields. Alleyways wide enough for a bullock cart separate the houses, lough a motor scooter is much more common than a bullock.
Older houses are of laterite, a rough rust-red stone. This must be protected from the rain by traditional palm frond screens, or now a layer of concrete and plastic roller blinds. Shops and some newer houses are of reinforced concrete, with the second story left open for grain storage. The laterite stone is incorporated for decoration in large municipal buildings.
Houses have wells, but also a piped municipal water supply. Each house has a roof tank for continuity of supply (incorporated as an architectural feature of apartments in town). There are street lights and mains power to the houses (power goes off for a few minutes several times a day).