Saturday, 29 December, 2007

Those Hidden Jewels...

As I rummage through the countless photographs on my laptop - my weary eyes light up as they see some timeless expressions captured by my seeking companion. The pictures leave no room for the written word and rightly so. These little jewels do justice to the hours that I have put behind the camera. Because, the heart of photography is not as much in technique as it is in the humble intention of reducing life's beautiful moments into an immortal frame.

Children of the Mountains

The Discovery of Innocence

Dil Chahta Hai kabhi naa beetein chamkeeley din

The Anatomy of Dissent

Leg Glances on Sunday Afternoons

The Freedom of Imagination


Gandhigiri - Live

The Magic of 3

The Gateway of Expression


Campus Flamboyance

Miracles in the Wind


Thursday, 20 December, 2007

Sunday, 2 December, 2007

Hotal Relax International

India is fascinating. Not only for its diverse landscapes and the eclectic mix of cultures but also for its eccentric sense of humour.

In tribute : Pasted below are 10 photo-stamps of how we tweak English, Intellectual Property Rights and the rules of grammar to create some silly, some ridiculous and almost all ignorant, instances of PDI - Public Display of Indianness.

For me, I love this grammatically incorrect flavour of India. It gives me enough reason to spend a couple of hours in the hotel-crowded, people-infested streets of Pahargunj in New Delhi. And I come back to my room with a huge grin on my face. The grin stemming not so much from what I see but from the underlying humour that misses the eye.

Tibetan Market, Nainital, Uttaranchal

And we thought it was Adidas all this while? I was so disappointed to know that the brand I long cherished, admired and flaunted was actually Adedas. The Tibetan Market in Nainital - pioneers in original imported goods were the ones who enlightened me two weeks back. Anyway, its not too late - Ribok and Nikke have not yet entered the market. Waiting for some competition in the high-performance sports goods sector...

Streets of Vapi, Gujarat

Aptly abbreviated, BP met the eyes of three innocent young men on their way to an innocent young village named Sonwada near Vapi. The title demonstrates the surplus of creative talent in our country and that directors like Farah Khan can do better than call their movies "Om Shanti Om"

Pahargunj, New Delhi

Imagine a bamboo hanging right in the middle of a bustling street. Its height - just about enough for you to scrape under it. Why the bamboo? Cuz Dal Fry is Rs. 8/- and Roti is Rs. 1/- only. Reason enough to paste a huge yellow banner on a shaky bamboo to create yet another Indian promotional delight.

Bhimtal, Uttaranchal

This unique board was stationed outside the scenic Bhimtal lake. Sometimes good intentions can go awry. But nonetheless, my heart-felt (devoid of sarcasm) appreciation for the tourism board for initiating awareness. You left me with a message and a smile. For both, I am thankful.

Pahargunj, New Delhi

Now, Pahargunj in New Delhi could make its way into the Guiness Book really soon. Since my hotel was in this locale, I had the opportunity to soak in the place. My hotel was in this lane named Ram Nagar (famous for everything Lord Ram wouldn't have associated himself with.) And in a lane of 300 metres, I hand-counted 40 salons (or saloons as they call them here.) Now they can't possibly be cutting hair off from anywhere besides the head - atleast me thinks. Nonetheless, these barber-shops had some hilarious names and taglines. Some offered massage service in your room and others like the one above were for both Ladis and Gents. And yes, they are not barber-shops... they are Beauty Saloons.

Off Palika Bazaar, New Delhi

From Connaught Place, on your way to the New Delhi Metro Station - you will find *hold your breath* India's largest collection of desi porn magazines. A feast for the senses, this place is nothing short of a heritage site. You will find Amisha Patel pose in the double X rated - "Love Hua". Then there is the globally popular "Madhosh" and "Sabnam", both of which were selling like hot cakes. Unfortunately, these magazines did not offer pictures and were only erotic reads in Hindi. But probe the guy a little and he will show you his private collection of nude photo mags. And boy! - he had some collection... As you may have guessed, I spent a chunk of my time here when I visited Delhi.

For the travel weary in Pahargunj, let me present to you, none other than Hotal Relax International. The tagline is the classic "We care for you". Look closely and you'd be able to appreciate the slick logo that makes this hotal truly international.

I wonder how British tourists react to such nuances of the English language as is in the case on our left. Massorie, Jambu & Udaypur (Yo!) are must-visit places. Of course, if there are commuting problems then "Availabl on Haire are Latest Car & Coaches"

Ram Nagar, New Delhi

Bhimtal Lake, Uttaranchal

"The public toilet is ahead. Please control till you reach your destination. Don't soil the road like a shameless fucker. This message is for both Ladis and Gents"

Kala Ghoda, Mumbai

In the heart of upmarket South Bombay. In the artsy-fartsy surroundings of Kala Ghoda. In an ambience that respects the power of words and visuals - Why would you name your shop what you have? Why?

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