Goa mourns death of hippie godfather 'Eight Finger Eddie'
Wednesday 27 October 2010
An ageing American hippie known as "Eight Finger Eddie" who was famous across India's resort state of Goa as a relic of its drug-fuelled, drop-out culture of the 1960s has died.
The 85-year-old, whose real name was Yertward Mazamanian, died in the former Portuguese colony after a long illness on October 18, according to online tribute web sites.
His cremation was streamed live on the user-generated content site www.blogtv.com. The video showed his body covered in flowers and burning incense sticks, next to a black and white photograph of him from the early 1970s.
One post on a Facebook site tribute page read: "He more than anyone put Goa on the Map". Others called him "the original freak".
"Anjuna Beach has lost its Goa Hippy Tribe father!" said another. "All of us over the decades who have shared precious moments with Eddie will miss his smile, his energy, his love for Life and Dance."
"Eight Finger Eddie" was a US expat of Armenian heritage who came to Anjuna Beach in 1965 at the age of 40 and never left.
The secluded sands of north Goa became the sun-kissed final destination for the beatniks and drop-outs on the Hippie Trail from Western Europe to Asia.
With a culture based on drugs, free love and music, the hippies found the beach a haven but it has since become overcrowded, with a reputation for drug- and alcohol-fuelled excess and crime, as foreign tourism has increased.
Eddie began the popular Anjuna flea market in 1975, originally as a place for tourists to sell or exchange their belongings.
The open-air bazaar still exists but is mainly a place for tie-dyed clothing, ornaments and sometimes stolen goods.
He also ran a soup kitchen for foreign visitors who had lost their way, money - or occasionally their minds.
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 1 Kate Winslet thanked 'particularly horrible' girl who bullied her at school after Titanic success
- 2 Australia to impose 24-hour curfew on all cats to protect endangered species
- 3 Black and ethnic minority people twice as likely to be hit by Tory cuts than white people, report finds
- 4 Walter Palmer: Cecil the lion killer revealed to be American dentist
- 5 What TripAdvisor users think of 16 of the world's most popular landmarks
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
The last thing Labour needs is a leader like Jeremy Corbyn who people want to vote for
I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn't exist
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
COMPETITIVE: Guru Careers: A Product Manager / Product Owner is required to jo...
£25k plus Benefits: Guru Careers: A Carpenter and Maintenance Operator is need...
£17600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This museum cares for one of the largest...
£12500 - £24500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Drivers wanted for a family run...