The cosmic giggler

Lisa Ray with the Dalai Lama
Lisa Ray with the Dalai Lama

Lisa Ray who never stops delighting with her continuous progression (from model to films, to inspirational cancer survivor, to perfume creator), is currently in Dehradun, immersed in three days of talks and lectures on the topic of ‘Reviving Indian Wisdom for Contemporary India’ at a sylvan wellness retreat nestled in the Himalayas. “Overwhelming to be at the receiving end of so much wisdom and good humour in the company of other like-minded shishyas,” she says about the experience, adding, “Numerous things always to share, but for the moment it’s His Highness’ childlike giggle that echoes in my memory.”

Ab Dilli door nahin
Good to see Mumbai making such a splash at the ongoing Delhi Art Fair. From Jitish Kallat’s major exhibition ‘Here After Here’ at the NGMA, described as the piece de resistance of the season, to attendees and participants like Anju and Atul Dodiya, Dhruvi Acharya, gallerists Shireen Gandhy, and curator Anupa Mehta, Godrej Lab’s Parmesh Shahani, the presence of Mumbai was as impactful as it was colourful.

The Mumbai artists at the Delhi Art Fair
The Mumbai artists at the Delhi Art Fair

This collage of portraits from the site taken by Acharya with artist friends Kallat, Surekha, Shakuntala Kulkarni, Archana Hande, the Dodiyas, Manisha Gera Baswani, and Mithu Sen captures Mumbai holding its own in the Capital.

Chutzpah or the art of epic cool
There have been many interpretations of what possessing true chutzpah or savoir faire (the ability to hold one’s own in any situation and to always remain epically cool) really means. The anecdote of the kid who steals flowers from your garden and then sweetly asks you to wrap them up is just the mildest of these.

Vikram and Jeeva Reddy (centre) with friends
Vikram and Jeeva Reddy (centre) with friends

But in our reckoning, the most striking example of chutzpah is Jeeva Reddy, the svelte much-married damsel from Goa who tied the knot again this weekend (she’s been married at least twice earlier to our knowledge) to Delhi-based biz man Vikram Reddy.

We had called up to congratulate the vivacious bride on the happy news and to ask for details of the somewhat sudden joyous occurrence. “Ask Murad,” she said promptly, sending us the number of her former (first) husband who hails from the erstwhile aristocracy of Rampur. “I am in recovery mode,” she said. “Murad will tell you everything. He was there,” she said.

Now we’ve heard of brides accompanied by their children and even former BFs celebrating the new chapter in their lives. But a former husband? Who is as delighted and celebratory as the rest of his family? That, according to us, is real chutzpah. Congratulations Jeeva and Vikram. And may you always remain so epically cool.

Selfie stricken
Call it the Trump factor, but it seems everything connected with the obstreperous new occupant at the White House is going pear-shaped. Consider the case of this media-savvy businesswoman, who had published a picture of herself and POTUS, on the day of his inauguration on the front page of a mainline broadsheet. The outing not only got her a whole lot of trolling on social media from Trump’s legion of critics, but apparently at a high-profile wedding held in Mumbai over the weekend, the lady, who was present, was the cynosure of intense curiosity.

“Everyone either wanted to meet the woman who paid to get her own picture on the front page with the President, or was overhead questioning her biz credentials,” says a guest. “Especially as it was said that she’d snapped the picture with Trump in a room full of 300 other guests at a public meeting at a hotel, when he’d come to Mumbai before becoming Prezzie.” Oh, dear. Only a few weeks ago we’d written about how another selfie with POTUS had landed two Pune-based realtors in a soup with his team.

Wafa and Wi-Fi
As we have written before, both Harsh Goenka (chairman, RPG) and Harsh Mariwala (chairman, Marico), industry leaders and friends, have full-heartedly embraced social media and together amassed about a million online followers. Both chairmen use the platform for sharing insights, news, motivational quotes and, of course, some well-humoured banter.

Harsh Goenka and Harsh Mariwala
Harsh Goenka and Harsh Mariwala

We came across this exchange on Twitter between the two recently when Goenka tweeted the PJ: “When a man betrays you — bewafa. When your internet connection betrays you — bewifi”, which resulted in many digital giggles. Mariwala, ever the wit, responded in coin too, “But when the Internet comes back, you’re happy for it. The same cannot be said for the man.” Indeed.

Music, wine and friends
Word comes in that this year’s Sula Fest, concluded yesterday, was even bigger and better than last year. From oenophiles like Sonal Holland, to glam girls like Kim Sharma and Parveen Dussanj Bedi, all roads apparently led to the Nashik vineyards where the heady mix of two days of wine, music and friends beckoned.

Rajeev Samant and Kim Sharma
Rajeev Samant and Kim Sharma

What’s more, an old winery converted into a sleek modern hotel, two minutes from the festival location, was a vast improvement on the old digs which were located a bit too far from the action. As Dussanj waxed lyrical from the site, “Sitting on this balcony on a warm sunny day, a cool breeze and the best music from around the world playing a few hundred metres away. Magic, music, masti and monkeying around. Dreams must be made of this.”

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