Mumbai Diary: Sunday dossier

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

Heritage mascot
We do love it when the cultural icons of our city fly high. Which is why news of Sabyasachi Mukherjee, director of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (CSMVS), heading to the Global Colloquium of University Presidents gives us a kick.

Sabyasachi Mukherjee
Sabyasachi Mukherjee

On April 12 and 14, the colloquium, to be held at Yale University, will reflect on the theme, Preservation of Cultural Heritage, and will be convened by presidents of its five sponsoring institutions — the universities of New York, Columbia, Princeton, Pennsylvania and Yale, all names that make us go hmm.

Supported by the United Nations Secretary General, the colloquium will see Mukherjee speak about the negative impact of globalisation, technology and power politics on cultural heritage. "We are losing so many cultural aspects, especially the nation's multilinguistic identity.

While we cannot stop globalisation, how can we preserve both our tangible and intangible heritage?" Mukherjee said to this diarist.

A biker's haven
There"s more to bikers than the badass stereotype of bearded, tattooed, pony tail wearing scrubs," says Vir Nakai, entrepreneur and motorcycle enthusiast. To help his breed learn the challenge of riding on tough terrain and build confidence to take the unbeaten path, Nakai has organised an open house at the Garage 52 — The Motorcycle Collective on April 23.

"When you're riding and the bike breaks down, you need to know what to do. Depending on a mechanic doesn't always work," he says. Which is why the open house will help bikers get their hands dirty and learn tricks of the trade, talk to experts and socialise with their ilk.

The celebration will include talks by experts, sale of gear and accessories and a barbeque night. "All to celebrate the garage's third anniversary."

Staying on the 'write' track
Forty-year-old marathon runner Bijay Nair is sprinting towards a new track, and from the looks of it, there's nothing stopping him. Eight years after the ex-Navy commander first decided to hit the tarmac following a thyroid condition, his aspirations in writing have also received a boost.

Bijay Nair
Bijay Nair

Nair won a recently held poetry competition, which was organised by Mumbai Road Runners and saw around 50 participants. No guesses, what he wrote about! "Running," he says, adding, "I have so many reasons to be grateful."

Nair recalls how he was first compelled to run to beat his thyroid problem. "I weighed 104 kgs then," he says. Today, having completed 38 half and seven full-marathons, Nair is at his fittest best. And it doesn't end here. He is also releasing a book this August, which narrates the stories of 44 runners from Mumbai and Bengaluru. His win at the competition is a reminder that he's on the right track.

Vijay Manjrekar finally honoured at Wankhede
The dressing rooms at Wankhede Stadium finally have a name again. After five years to be precise. The Mumbai Cricket Association authorities forgot to install a signage for the Vijay Manjrekar Dressing Rooms when the stadium was renovated for the 2011 World Cup.

The new signage for the Vijay Manjrekar Dressing Rooms at the Wankhede Stadium. Pic/Subodh Mayure
The new signage for the Vijay Manjrekar Dressing Rooms at the Wankhede Stadium. Pic/Subodh Mayure

A couple of mentions in articles and a few nudges/reminders by this newspaper to those in the corridors of city cricket power ultimately worked and Manjrekar, the great Mumbai and India batsman of the 1950s and 1960s was finally re-honoured.

The late Manjrekar served the game well. He was a mentor to several Mumbai players and only recently did we learn, through some old footage, that it was he who supervised the preparation of Ajit Wadekar's Indian team's tour to the West Indies in 1971 by watching all the players train at the Brabourne Stadium nets before they departed for Jamaica.

The golden jubilee of that triumph is five years away and if at all the Indian cricket board decide to honour the 1971 heroes, Vijay Manjrekar shouldn't miss out on a mention.

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