Gauhar

On 19 February 2019, thanks to my husband Sukhangshu, a theater artist, I got the chance to watch the much-acclaimed play ‘Gauhar’ at Delhi’s Kamani Auditorium in spite of a tight work schedule.

Rajeshwari Sachdev played the lead role of Gauhar to great perfection with her flawless singing, acting, dancing, and her stunning looks. She was Gauhar, the feisty, versatile artist, and Gauhar was Rajeshwari…

The other actors, such as Zila Khan with her superb rendition of Thumris, were amazing too, but the reason why I am making a special mention here about Rajeshwari is that she is one of those God’s special creations who have so many talents which you would rarely find in one single individual. I have seen her perform in various films, serials, and the song-dance video Hule-hulare-hule-hule-hule), but this particular play Gauhar, I think, tapped her full potential and brought out her best. She shone like a diamond!

Zila Khan, who is Pandit Vilayat Khan’s daughter, played as the older Gauhar. Her style of classical singing was a lovely treat and in the end, we were told by the Director Lilette Dubey that she sang so beautifully in spite of a sore throat and fever.

The play, as expected, ended with a standing ovation and I came home, feeling absolutely thrilled.

I wonder why Bollywood doesn’t tap the skills of these talented theater people more often instead of dishing out scores of meaningless, inane films. We deserve better, don’t we?

Here are some more pics.

At the end of the play, Lillette Dubey did the introductions…

Poppy Lane

It is Spring now in Delhi. A poet’s delight. Flowers everywhere; even in those sooty, heavily polluted industrial patches of the city where flowers are the last thing on anyone’s mind.

The pic on the top is of a lane adjoining M.G Road Metro Station, right outside Beverley Park II Apartments. I call this road ‘Poppy Lane’ because these red and white poppies are its most striking feature. They look absolutely divine and ravishing. Whenever there is a breeze, they shake and bob their heads like Flamenco dancers and seem to be smiling merrily. A mere sight of them is enough to set your pulse racing with joy and forget your worries for a while.

Thanks to Poppy lane and its thoughtful gardeners, I am now one of those blessed ones who get the chance to grab a few moments of unalloyed happiness, peace, and tranquillity before getting sucked into another day of corporate turmoil.

Alas, this brief interlude will soon be over and these lovely poppies would disappear…Do visit them before they are gone…

Come Summer and the Champa trees on this lane would flaunt clumps of glorious white flowers. The road would then become The Frangipani Lane as named by the famous writer-blogger Mayank System Soofi in his Delhiwale column in The Hindustan Times on 15 August 2018. See the pic below.

Something like a much-loved child in a joint family with many pet names….

A Big Thank you, PH!

No other website or publisher has got me as much love and admiration as a poet as Poemhunter.com. By frequently displaying my name as a ‘Popular Member’ and some of my poems as ‘Member Poem,’ PH continues to encourage me to submit more and more new poems to their site and acquire new admirers at a global level. All this without any expectations whatsoever, financially or otherwise.

See these pics below.

It has worked the other way round too. From a painfully shy, reclusive, highly introverted poet, I have transformed into a writer who loves to attend open Mike poetry sessions, thanks to PH. My very first invitation to an Open Mike came via PH from a fellow member poet Mr. R.K. Das who lives in Delhi and works in Rajya Sabha.

Here’s a video of my performance in ‘Caferati’ at India Habitat Center. https://youtu.be/d-qCMMr95QE

Recently one of PH’s numerous member poets Kumarmani Mahakul honored me with the title, ‘Spring Rain.’ See these links.

URL: https://m.poemhunter.com/jasbir-chatterjee/

https://www.poemhunter.com/poem/attention-to-titles-of-honour-part-6/

The best part of PH is that they make every member Poet feel important and deeply loved.

Thanks once again, dear PH!

Yellow Day 2

On my way to work in The Delhi Metro on 10 February 2019 , I found several people specially dressed in yellow (see pic above) to celebrate the festivals of Basant Panchami and Saraswati Puja on that day. I wished I could join them in their pandals…

It reminded me of another yellow day 2 years ago…Click here and read on… https://jasbirchatterjeephotoblog.wordpress.com/2017/09/07/a-yellow-day/

A Winter Recipe

At the peak of winter, when it’s chilly, misty, and cloudy outside and the plants are bereft of green leaves, it’s best to head to the kitchen and make these unusual pakoras for yourself and your family. Have them with a cup of hot masala chai. It will drive away the blues and make you feel better.

Here are the step-by-step pics…

1. Grind some cauliflower ganthals (stalks) along with a bunch of garlic, some ginger, and a green chilly. Take out this paste in a vessel and add besan (black gram powder) to it.

Add salt, ajwain, hing, amchur, cumin powder, and coriander powder as per your taste.

Mix well.

Take out spoonfuls of this batter and deep fry in hot oil in a Karahi till they turn brown all over.

Place them in a plate once done. Enjoy with a dip of your choice and a hot cup of tea.

Happy eating!☺️

All About A Shawl

There are certain things that stay young forever, irrespective of their ageing users. This shawl, for instance.

I bought it in 1991 for Rs.150 from the Gujarat Pavilion at Delhi’s Pragati Maidan during its Annual World Trade Fair. It was something I felt very proud of at that time as I have never been a very good shopper who manages to get wonderful things at reasonable prices.

Since then, this shawl has undergone several washings, often with very harsh detergents. Yet it remains as fresh, soft, and warm as it was when I first bought it.

Every winter I take it out along with the other shawls which are trendier, thicker, warmer, and costlier. But I find myself using only this one at home. Why, you might ask.

Well, it reminds me of my childhood spent in Gujarat; the sandy beach on which I played; the salty taste of raw groundnuts that spilled over from the huge ships far away and got deposited on the shore by the huge, foamy waves; the picnics my family and I enjoyed outside the club room at Sainik School campus, Balachadi, Jamnagar, just a few yards away from the Arabian Sea beach…