Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Andheri traffic can change your plans, they say. And that's what actor Sonali Kulkarni did on Thursday when she arrived in the suburb. First, she ditched her car and boarded the Metro from Andheri to Versova, where she was spotted by this mid-day photographer. Next, Kulkarni asked her for directions to Lokhandwala, and took her advice and hopped into an auto rickshaw! Pic/Sneha kharabe
Art for a cause
Kerala may no longer be in the news for the flood that devastated the state in August last year, but people are still picking up the pieces to get back on their feet. In the bid to do its bit for its home state, the Kochi Biennale Foundation, which is the parent organisation of the ongoing Kochi-Muziris Biennale, has tied up with auction house Saffronart for the first live fundraiser art auction in Kerala.
Called Art Rises for Kerala, proceeds from it will be donated to the Government of Kerala Chief Minister's Distress Relief Fund. Works have been donated by Anish Kapoor, Atul Dodiya, Anju Dodiya and GR Iranna, and there are even two rare drawings by Amrita Sher-Gil in there. The sale will have no buyer's premium. The 42 artworks are available for viewing until January 18, when the auction will take place.
Preserving his childhood memories
When a bookstore shuts down, it isn't just a brick and mortar space that ceases to exist. It marks the end of an era for those who have spent hours inside, perusing books, soaking in the smell of new tomes and yellowing pages, and getting transformed for life in the process.
So when Roshan Abbas learnt that Hobby Corner, a bookstore in his hometown of Lucknow had shut down and the owner was selling books by the roadside, he took to social media to galvanise support for the elderly man.
"Let's do something. He gave us our childhood," the actor and presenter said, appealing to his Lucknow-based followers. But responses came in from all over, including singer Meiyang Chang who said reading habits need to be supported.
Abbas will be launching a crowd-funding campaign soon. "I have sent someone to meet him. [We'll] then raise funds on an online platform and monitor how they are used," he said.
A unique celebration
A Lucknowi cuisine eatery in Juhu is celebrating completing one year in a unique way — by donating wheelchairs to a neighbouring hospital. "We got to know that Cooper Hospital needs wheelchairs, so we have decided to donate a few there to celebrate rather than using that money for marketing the restaurant," Farid Khan, owner of KBN Kitchens, told this diarist.
"Ours is a small venture and we haven't even broken even yet, but we just wanted to do something for our first anniversary, and this seemed apt. My father couldn't walk properly for a brief period, and we needed a wheelchair to help him move around. We know how much running around happens in hospitals," he informs. They have placed the order with a Bombay-based supplier and the donation is scheduled for next weekend. However, their restaurant is not wheelchair-friendly yet owing to shortage of space. But Khan does hope to move to a bigger space, which is disabled-friendly.
A groom from 18 years ago
These days it's refreshing to read about Anjuman Atash Behram in any context other than being caught in the tussle between the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited and the Parsi community. The community has been seeking the realignment of a tunnel for the Metro-3 line that goes below two revered fire temples, including the Atash Behram, as it could cause structural damage.
But it was once a place to celebrate milestones minus any impending threat, as photographer Chirodeep Chaudhuri was reminded of when a Parsi couple wrote to him recently, 18 years after he made their special day a little more special.
"My friend and I had been shooting pictures in South Bombay. We found ourselves at Dhobi Talao and saw a bride and her groom alighting from a car. I remember being tentative about shooting a picture but the bride gave me a smile. As non-Parsis we weren't allowed to step beyond the gates but I got to witness my first Parsi wedding," he wrote on Instagram.
Back with a bang
It was towards the fag end of November, and peak season in the picturesque state of Goa when news broke that the celebrated Burmese eatery, Bomra's had been caught in controversy for allegedly serving dog meat.
This diarist had reached out Bawmra Jap, its chef and owner, and at the time he had said, "It's ludicrous. They have no basis whatsoever." And that the claims were bizarre comes through in the fact that a month and a half later, Jap and his celebrity-den are entirely back in action.
Now, we hear, Jap will be in town from today for a week-long visit to work on new dishes for Miss T, 2018's lauded opening co-helmed by Gauri Devidayal, who said, "We can't wait to have him back in the house." Jap can't wait to get back into the kitchen either. "Bombay folks can expect exciting new additions to the menu!" he said.
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