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Cruising actors

And word comes in that the merry band of actors namely Priyanka Chopra, Farhan Akhtar, Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma, who make up the primary cast of Zoya Akhtar's latest under production venture 'Dil Dhadakne Do' are doing very well thank you, as they sail across Europe in their luxury liner on which the film is set.

But perhaps this is exactly the reason that might have prompted a certain Ms Padukone to take time off from her own ventures and fly to Europe for some quiet time with Ranveer.

Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone
Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone

After all, weren’t Ranveer and Anushka a cosy item not too long ago and couldn’t all this time spent cooped up together light a few sparks? Time to check out the high seas and the salubrious climes of Europe-right Deepika?

Cyrus and Paris in Cannes
The fascination certain people have for Paris Hilton, termed by the media as ‘New York’s leading It Girl’ in 2001 never fails to confound us.

Paris Hilton and Cyrus Poonawalla
Paris Hilton and Cyrus Poonawalla

A woman famous for being famous, whose claim to fame is a leaked sex tape and a shrewd parlaying of her family name for maximum commercial benefit, Hilton, though a bit passe after Miley Cyrus’ twerking episode and Kim Kardashian making it to the cover of Vogue, still has her fans.

And chief amongst them is obviously billionaire bon vivant Cyrus Poonawalla, who looked as pleased as punch with his international arm candy at this year’s amfAR Gala on May 22 during the Cannes Film Festival where he is a regular.

Mrs and Mr You Know Who
There are going to be some big name celebrity visitors to Mumbai soon. Melinda Gates is supposed to be coming as a speaker at the next TEDx in the city and sources say if she does, her famous husband will probably accompany her.

Melinda and Bill Gates. PIC/AFP
Melinda and Bill Gates. PIC/AFP

And similarly Victoria Beckham is rumoured to be planning a visit in September to launch part of her luxury clothing line, and if she does, her famous husband is supposed to be accompanying her too!

Victoria and David Beckham. PIC/GETTY IMAGESVictoria and David Beckham. PIC/GETTY IMAGES

Famous women with even more famous husbands. Expect the usual rush to get on party guest lists and scrambling for ownership rights to hosting them.

A paean to Mumbai
Described as capturing ‘the soul of Bombay and the sullied grungy chaos of Mumbai’, THE BOMBAY BRONX, a self styled HIP NEW BAR IN BREACH CANDY, is restaurateur Kishore DF’s latest venture after the success of his WTF and The Big Nasty, for which he has teamed up once again with partner Nakul Kumar to launch a watering hole in the heart of Sobo exclusively for the townies.

Nakul Kumar and Kishore DF
Nakul Kumar and Kishore DF

With quirky tributes to the city’s legendary leitmotifs like auto rickshaw, train booths, dabbawallas, stands and BEST tickets, the bar, designed by Bo Consulting, has got the young and restless …well young and restless. And existing as it does so close to the legendary Sobo hangout and watering hole Ghetto, it remains to be seen if it attracts the Ghetto rats or a crowd of loyal barflies of its own.

Lover’s haven
And while sources say that leading Bollywood producers YRF is gearing up to celebrate the 1000th week run of their all time hit DDLJ with the mother of all parties later in the year, the sweetest and most fitting tribute to Aditya Chopra’s debutante venture about enduring love is the fact that city couples go to the Maratha Mandir where it’s been kept running-to canoodle.

Aditya Chopra
Aditya Chopra

“There’s hardly a soul in the theatre,” said our source, adding, “And while YRF is keeping the film running for its upcoming anniversary, they are also providing the city’s romantics with a place to far from the maddening crowd to call their own.” Nice!

Monsoon Moments
And now that the skies have turned grey and Mumbaikers are looking skywards with expectant expressions hoping that today, (perhaps tomorrow?) the rain Gods will bless their city, I too have begun to think happy monsoon thoughts: Umbrellas bought at Crawford Market, black jamuns bought at Breach Candy, Annie Lennox singing in the background, roasted bhuttas at Marine Drive and the best monsoon gift of all-heavenly fragrant sontakkas being sold by the bucketful at street corners.

What don’t we know about the monsoons in Mumbai? Flooded streets, blocked drains, trains cancelled and the entrances of offices lined with open umbrellas and dripping rain shoes. There’s nothing new about Mumbai’s monsoons: sparrows and stray dogs looking even more pathetic than they normally do, urchins dancing in the rain, shanties huddled against the onslaught with their familiar blue plastic protection, hoardings of films being drenched rendering the stars on them even more maudlin.

There’s something so reassuringly familiar about the monsoons in Mumbai: strangers sharing rides and shelter, newspaper headlines saying ‘City Stranded’ and a universal urge to eat bhajias and drink mugs of tea. In the monsoons, I look forward to going to the Samovar, to watch the rain make the rolling lawns of the Museum look like a lush tropical forest.

I sit there reading the papers, sipping some kahva and wondering when the next-door exhibition hall will be ready and open and host some stunning new exhibitions. From there I go to Rhythm House to pick up some monsoon related music for long drives to nowhere in the car.

In the monsoons, I watch the angry black sea as it turns and churns wondering how it will ever go back to its old ways again. So today, as you can see, I’m having a monsoon moment, hoping that they will finally come and bring respite to the city. Do you think it’s gonna rain today?

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