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Seven years back in Goa: not a lot has changed

Agonda Beach The sound of surf is ever present and soon becomes part of my heartbeat.  I don’t hear the roar as separate from my circulation  until I move away from the shore- and then it’s absent like a friend who’s gone somewhere else. I listen to the  waves boom, braking the limit of their […] Read more

Little Moscow in Goa

A small metalled road leads from Morjim village to the beach, which under a decade ago was the one of the most tranquil stretch of sand and coconut palms in Goa. Today the area is known as “Little Moscow.” I entered a huge bamboo and palm shack full of  nut-brown lounging Russians and found the […] Read more

An interesting woman

Two friends from CJM, my Convent school in Delhi, became political activists and distinguished themselves in unforgettable ways. A third friend created the National Dairy Development Board, an extraordinary infrastucture which  supplies the nation with milk  through a network of  cooperatives. This blog, however, is dedicated to the one and only June/Jaya Jaitly, nee Chettur, […] Read more

This is the gospel of GBT (Great British Things) according to the Times columnist, chief Sports Writer, Simon Barnes. 1.The Suffolk Coast: reeds, saline lagoons,the volatile, shifting, changing landscape, home of the bitterns, marsh harriers and avocets. 2. The curry houses of Drummond Street. 3. A Dance to the Music of Time. the 12-novel sequence […] Read more

Posh Street Food

    This is a normal lunchtime in the exclusive precincts of the Delhi Golf Club, built by the British in 1931. Membership has been closed for some while. The championship golf course is landscaped around exquisite 15-16thth century sandstone Muslim tombs and summerhouses, built by the invaders from Afghanistan and further North. Its welcome […] Read more

Work ethic

Feudalism with its many different forms is like the MSRA bacteria. Maybe in 200 years it will be winkled out of all the crevices, nooks and corners in India; another 300 years to disinfect and fumigate the soil which nourishes every cockroach manifestation. Demanding bribes as well as giving them is the elemental result of […] Read more

Defence Colony Sunday

Why Defence Colony? Well, what had originally been farmland was acquistioned by government, divided into building plots and sold to members of the Armed Forces in the 50s at heavily subsidized prices. An old lady in swinging long skirt, man’s overshirt with breast pockets, scratched spectacles, heavy silver anklets and bracelets told me she had […] Read more

The Convent, the Cathedral and the Bourbons

In the very heart of Lutyens’ New Delhi the Gol Dakhana (Round Post Office) is one landmark among several- the cream and red brick Cathedral of the Redemption, the Bangla Sahib Gurdwara, the Hanuman Mandir and my old school, the Convent of Jesus and Mary, which I still think of with fondness. The tall wrought […] Read more

Morning ablutions

Mornings begin with a constitutional in the vicinity of the sacred peepul. Round and round the track they go in their highlighted Adidas, in twos and sometimes threes, talking not of Michelangelo but the stock market, wicked sisters-in-law and the price of onions. The streets are being swept by Har Chandi and her team. Her […] Read more

The Market Opens at 11

You catch a quick taste of a few of the millions of flavours that blend into the complexity of India at Heathrow, where Terminal Four is the designated anthill for Third World airlines and travellers. A first glimpse of the tie of turbans- flying saucers, jaunty bandanas and strangely modernized mushrooms of this proud headdress- […] Read more