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Birthday Celebrations!

>> At friend and neighbour Arti Surendranth’s birthday celebrations (how come some of the nicest people are Geminis?) on Saturday at Rohit Bal’s spectacular Veda, we met a slice of Mumbai’s beautiful people: the enigmatic Jackie Shroff, an ebullient and slim Juhi Chawla, dynamo duo Tara and Roopak Saluja, Mumbai’s spirited lasses Shaina NC, Anna Singh, Deepa Harris, Akanksha Nanda, Chhaya Momaya and Rita Dodhy, the impeccably mannered Fardeen Khan, big bull Rakesh Jhunjhunwalla, suave gents Niraj Bajaj, Tarun Kataria, and Ashwini Kakkar, old friends like Shekhar and Rashmi Mehta, Pradeep and Papia Guha, Chhitra Gidwani, Tony and Sherry Singh.


Arti Surendranath cutting her birthday cake

But this diary would not be what it was — a chronicler of what goes on silently in the margins of events often unnoticed or unreported — if we did not mention three poignant observations in what was otherwise a full voltage high society bash! We could not help being moved by the sight of Arti’s lovely children Angad and Kshiraja who worked tirelessly from the sidelines to ensure their mom’s special day was perfect.


Amrita and Rahul Raichand

We take our hat off to a certain lady of grace and fortitude who attended her friend’s birthday despite a recent tragedy in her life that must have been debilitating.


Jackie Shroff and Anna Singh

We noticed how another beautiful lady who’d had a very high-profile marital breakup that had exercised the media happened to exit at the same moment as her ex-husband. Whether it was a coincidence or synchronized, we don’t know.


Arti Surendranath and Alok Aggarwal

But we are proud to say that we didn’t embarrass the couple by hanging around to see if they went home together. Though we are keeping our fingers crossed. After all, — it’s moments like these that remind us that however beautiful rich or famous — under all that glamour and makeup — we’re human.

All that we love and miss about Mumbai life
>> From Ernest Flanagan, musician and singer we received this gem. Some happy memories of day’s gone by…


Some raw mango to make you drool


Buddhi Ka Bal....and licking sticky fingers


Running to the golawalla


Multi-coloured candies.

The Party of the Decade?
>> Many years ago — 46 to be exact — the American novelist, the diminutive social gadfly Truman Capote threw a masked ball in honour of the Washington Post publisher Katherine Graham, that came to be called the ‘ Party of the Century’.


Aamir Khan and Kiran Rao

Themed as a Black and White Ball, it galvanised the upper echelons of American society for months before and after its occurrence. The New York Times gave the party extensive coverage, author Deborah Davis wrote an entire book about it, and it held thrall over successive generations of America’s elite classes.


Karishma and Kareena Kapoor

So momentous was the party to society’s fragile regard of itself that we are told many who were not invited chose to fly across continents as an alibi, many were placed in social Siberia as a result of not making it to Capote’s list and tidbits of the party were consumed with ferocious delight and regaled many another evening.¬†


Manish Malhotra and Karan Johar

What we will not miss
>> Now that the IPL is over and we can all go back to life as we knew it, here are a few things we will not be missing at India’s celebrated ‘out to lunch’ moment.

We will not miss the sight of alarmingly cheerful European bimbettes in polythene body suits attempting to deceive us into thinking we’re at the Giants Stadium witnessing an American football game.

We will not miss the interpretation of what passed for breaking news during the season and as TV viewers we will not be shortchanged of our daily dose of parliamentary tamasha and disaster coverage.

We will not be subjected to images of sundry celebrities and their friends waving their team flags and attempting to appear intense and involved while donning silly hats and tees.

We will not miss the angst of losing team owners, the Facebook posts of our Facebook friends (what’s the point of saying ‘go Dhoni ‘on your status — you think he’s reading it? or Rajiv Shukla’s sartorial sense or syntax.

We will not miss pathetic attempts at humour in ads nor the incessant ticker type of game updates.

We will not miss losing our friends and family to evenings before the TV and the glazed look that comes to their eyes.

We will definitely not miss stories of star tantrums on and off the field match fixing allegations or after game party drunken behavior.

There are more things that we will not miss, but these should suffice. Goodnight and goodbye IPL. It’s time to pack up your bags and accede the spotlight to that other great Indian tamasha : politics¬†

Something of this magnitude on the Social Richter scale appears to have been achieved by the prominent birthday celebrations of you know who this weekend. Not only has it elicited uncommon interest for who came and wore what (and for that there are eminently better sources than ourselves) but all that went on around the margins of that particular evening are being relished with equal delight. And here’s two of the more hilarious:

The uninvited wife of a leading businessman is reported to have come up with an ingenious and creative way to ensure that herself and her friends would appear to be walking in to the said party in all the next day’s coverage by hosting her own party in an adjoining room. Another wife of an industrialist rumoured to be knocking perennially at Bollywood society’s door is alleged to have flown in from Europe for six hours to mark her presence at the epochal bash! That’s how important an event it was!¬†

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