Mumbai Diary: Saturday scene

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

Fun with folding
It’s the last farmers’ market of the year at the Maharashtra Nature Park in the city, and should be especially fun for children. Khiyali, a young girl homeschooled by Gandhian parents, will help children six and above to make triflexagons, from 11am to 12 noon. Her mother will have a discussion for parents on slow learning. Another workshop on Christmas decorations will be held from 10am onwards, and there will be music by artistes from National Streets for Performing Arts, as well as Christmas carols at 1pm. Of course, you can stock up on organic vegetables and fruit, and we hear that palak stocks are in abundance. (Incidentally, you can steam the green goodness and freeze it for future use.)

ON THE ROAD: Cynthia and Jens Jacob in their Volkswagen Kombi, a four-cylinder 1500cc petrol van
On the road: Cynthia and Jens Jacob in their Volkswagen Kombi, a four-cylinder 1500cc petrol van

Driving across the world
GERMAN-born entrepreneur Jens Jacob and his wife Cynthia were in the city a few days ago, as they cover India in their aim to drive across the world. The couple are travelling  in their 1965 Volkswagen Kombi van, nicknamed ‘Bluee’. The van is equipped with a small kitchen, a water tank, spares, tools and some books. Jens started the journey alone five years ago, but now travels with his wife who he met in Dubai. The duo have travelled over 26 countries, over 60,000km, including The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Dubai, Oman and Iran. They are now in India. Talking about India, Jens says, “I had many Indian friends and they had told me a lot about India. The crowds and the pace of India, particularly Mumbai, has left me in awe. I have fallen in love with the Indian people.”  Mumbai, Jens says, is the first city in which he felt lost. He says, “Driving on the roads of Mumbai has been like hell. People cross the roads even if the signal is on. There is no space between cars, bikers crisscross anyhow. I was overwhelmed by the traffic.” The Jacobs will visit other places in India and then go to West Bengal,  from where they plan to drive to Myanmar as he continues his journey in his car which will complete 50 years on February 15, 2015. Jens has chronicled his journeys in his e-books, which are available at www.bulliadventure24.com.

New phone app for safety
With reports of attacks on women and senior citizens growing, news of a phone application to help keep people safe is always welcome. Security systems firm Zicom has launched an Android-based app called Ziman, which can be used to call for help in times of need. Free to download from ziman.zicom.com/app/panic.apk or from the website mycs.zicom.com/ziman, the app can be activated in five seconds in an emergency, and the user can enter up to two emergency contact numbers. The pro (paid) version has additional features. The app also helps users find nearby hospitals and police stations. Ziman was launched yesterday at an event which included a panel discussion on safety and security. Participants included film director Mukesh Bhatt, Mumbai’s Deputy Mayor Alka Kerkar, chairperson of Khar Residents’ Association Anandini Thakoor and karate champion and model Sandhya Shetty. Viveck Shettyy, head of the media cell for the Consumer Guidance Society of India, moderated the discussion.

Parsi youth get together for a cause
A GROUP of youngsters from the Parsi community are organising a social to promote togetherness and camaraderie. The group called Xtremely Young Zoroastrians (XYZ) with ‘Pursuit of Happiness’ as its motto has organised a series of cultural activities for children of the community. At Birla Matushri Sabhaghar tomorrow (December 21) at 10.45am, the group will organise some fellowship and service activities for children between 5 and 15 years from the Parsi community. With this programme, the group plans to kickstart and then continue to have a series of programmes for young Parsis in the city every alternate Sunday at various venues. Hoshaang Gotla, founder of XYZ, says, “The XYZ Foundation is striving to build a strong sense of belonging and pride amongst the children of the Parsi community. Religious values are an important part of our culture and we want our children to start adhering to them from an early age. The activities that XYZ will undertake include, developing leadership skills like goal setting, decision making, team work, people skills and ethics.” The event will include a cultural performance and installation of the executive committee.

Snappy chat
Teacher:
Why did you go home early from school?
Student: I was trying to make up for coming late!

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