Many many years ago when I was much younger and much more trusting an old family friend gifted my parents a piece of art he called ‘a work of genius’. It was a 15” by 12” printed frame with the exact same pattern of coloured dots and petal shapes spread across its surface.
At first we assumed it was the detailing that was the genius part about it. But then, some weeks later that same friend called up to inquire about the artwork. When our answers – revolved around similar phrases of praise, he finally revealed to us that hidden within those dots and shapes was a figure of a dancing Krishna. And that the genius part was to spot that hidden figure within its incredible detailing.
At the end of 2017, I wrote an article about whatthat year taught me about life. A little over two years now – in the wake of a new decade – here I am, reminding myself of, and implementing those lessons, through a year of gratitude.
The beginning of 2019 was very different from the beginning of 2020; for one, back then, the new year’s messages poured in till almost the 10th. This year, its been barely few days in, and I can already see that the messages and merriment has phased out.
A small part of me believes it’s because people have matured and moved on from the hysteria of overplaying it. But a more dominant part of me believes, it’s because of a universal decline in enthusiasm. I can’t speak on the behalf of the entire world population – but as I see it, and as Joan Didion once said ‘the world as I had understood it, no longer existed.’
I love the coffee and club sandwiches served at the Sea Lounge. I love its rustic interiors, I love the quiet ambience it radiates, and I love that beyond 8 it’s nearly empty.
And for precisely that reason, my husband and I were in the Taj that night. We entered by 8 and were ready to leave by 9:40. We took the lift and 2 minutes later it opened into the lobby. My ankle was sprained so I stayed inside till our driver could fetch us. That’s when we heard the first sound of commotion. At the same time, I also heard the sound of gunshots.
It was my 14th wedding anniversary and I was given a complimentary Garden Suite on the 6th floor of the Old Wing of the Taj for a night. That night.
My wife and I checked in at about 3 in the afternoon, and after spending a lazy day we wanted to surprise our friends – the owners of Leopold Café – for dinner. As fate would have it, they weren’t there. Not at their house and not even – by God’s grace – at their restaurant.
Manish Mody: It was our anniversary dinner at the Golden Dragon and we had reservations for the 3 of us for 8:15, that night. Me, my wife, Ipsuta and our daughter, Trisha.
We were a little late so they seated us at the Apollo Bar till they could give us a table. Ipsuta and I were enjoying our drinks, but Trisha was hungry so she returned to the restaurant. After resolving a billing problem, we caught up with her 15 minutes later.
We were just skimming through the starters menu when we heard a loud BANG!