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Goa’s bedrock.

The Konkani term tambdi maati – lit. red clay – has special meaning to Goans. It refers to the red soil of our land derived from the bedrock laterite that spans Goa‘s demesne.

Traditional Goan dwellings – homes, temples and churches – were built with laterite and coated with lime. Post-1961 we saw the retreat of laterite and the dismal spread of Third World concrete.

Chapel windows in Arpora, Goa

Laterite wall and windows of nacre, in Arpora
5D Mark III, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

House of Dattaram Wadkar in Thivim, Goa

House in Thivim
5D Mark III, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

Basilica of Bom Jesus, Old Goa

Basilica of Bom Jesus, Old Goa, stripped of its lime plaster
5D, 24-105L

  • Vivian A. D'Souza - May 17, 2018 - 3:43 pm

    Laeterite is Goa. That is why I built my home with exposed Laeterite exterior walls. I have received a lot of compliments
    Actually, I wanted to have the entire home of exposed laeterite
    as this was how my Grandparents home used to be (except for the
    living room).
    Since I was in the USA while the house was being built, the
    Architect and Contractor took liberties with my instructions, and the interiors and the balcao area were plastered.
    I love the warm cozy look of Laeterite !ReplyCancel

    • Rajan Parrikar - May 17, 2018 - 4:17 pm

      Vivian-bab, having seen your home I concur that it has the “warm cozy look” that you mention.ReplyCancel

  • Premanand - May 17, 2018 - 8:02 am

    We used to play from morning till sundown in ‘tambdi maati’ and by the end of summer vacations I used to invariably get the ‘tambdi maatiche phod’, small water boils and blisters, on both of my legs. After looking at those photographs I so want to be in Goa, right now! 🙂ReplyCancel

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