Mumbai Diary: Friday frolics

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Bring back the cold coffee (and the cake)
Team KN Dhunjibhoy won the high-voltage Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC) elections yesterday. While champagne and celebrations for Team KND are in order, one goes back to Dhunjibhoy’s campaign catchline: Race for Change.

On a lighter note, change is inevitable and necessary in many cases, but one is disappointed that Mahalaxmi racing staples like cold coffee (many years ago sold for Rs 10) and sliced cakes, plus thinly sliced (how very Brit really) cucumber sandwiches and pastries, sold on the first and second decks and in the middle of the course, are no more.

The chaat counter at the far end of the course does have some good spicy stuff, but punters who remember the good ol’ days are wondering where all the old favourites are.

Asian laurel for Mumbai cinematographer
The Asian Television Awards (ATA) 2014 were announced recently and Mumbai-based cinematographer Veerdhaval Puranik won the best cinematography award. The Pune-born technical ace was in Egypt checking out locations for an upcoming project, when the awards were presented in Singapore.

Veerdhaval Puranik won the accolade for his camera work in Buddha, a weekly TV serial
Veerdhaval Puranik won the accolade for his camera work in Buddha, a weekly TV serial

Puranik says, “I have been in the industry since 2000 and have worked on a number of travel shows as well as historical shows. At the Cannes Film Festival, Buddha, the serial for which I won the award was screened. The ATA members saw it and asked the serial makers to send it for the awards.”

Interestingly, Puranik’s was the only category where the serial was nominated. Speaking about Buddha, Puranik says, “A weekly show allows for more scale and scope to explore camera angles and movement. In a historic show, I feel I am able to do more and show my talents better. The vision of Buddha as a serial was very clear and that helped me work better.”

The makers of the serial collected the award on Puranik’s behalf in Singapore. He says, “This award has given me a nice pat on the back, and is very encouraging. My work is my passion, but getting an Asia-level award is a great feeling, too.”

A bridge too far
Animal lovers of any denomination would have been thrilled with Pope Francis declaring recently that all dogs go to heaven. As it is, having taken the name of St Francis of Assisi (patron saint of animals), the Pontiff has already kindled the hope of a kinder world for furred and feathered denizens.

Those who shuffle off the mortal coil are, in international animal lovers’ parlance, said to have crossed the Rainbow Bridge. But as one wag (yes, do note that pun) in the city remarked, in India pets will have to wait for a while before crossing, as the Rainbow Bridge is still under construction.

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