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Mumbai Diary: Saturday Dossier

Updated on: 02 December,2023 12:27 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Team mid-day |

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

Mumbai Diary: Saturday Dossier

Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

Eye on the birds

A couple relaxes while a photographer clicks pictures at Dadar beach.

All for women

All for women

Writer, actor and theatre maker Sapan Saran is set to add another feather to her hat. On December 16, she will launch her first-ever book Ottam Aur Anya Natak that features three of her works about women at Prithvi House. “We need more women stories, queer stories, caste stories, and stories of marginalised voices until achhe din arrive,” Saran (below) told this diarist, adding that she began compiling her plays during the lockdown. “As a working theatre professional, it is very difficult to find time to create something like this while balancing stage projects. So, it has been on top of my to-do list for a while. Each play has a distinctly different form and cultural landscape with strong female protagonists,” she revealed. 

Reliving the good old days

An illustration of the now defunct Premier Padmini taxi will be part of the ‘90s Forever series; (right) Soumya MujumdarAn illustration of the now defunct Premier Padmini taxi will be part of the ‘90s Forever series; (right) Soumya Mujumdar

As another year comes to a close, you can trust a ‘90s kid to dial up the nostalgia. City-based illustrator and artist Soumya Mujumdar will dig up memories from her past to turn them into 31 illustrations that she will release through December. “I worked all November to prepare the illustrations. They will include school memories, TV shows, old gadgets and modes of transport that probably don’t exist today,” she said. Those in search of ‘90s nostalgia can head to @soumyamujumdardesigns. 

Open-winged welcome 

A long-billed pipit spotted at the park. PIc Cesy/Gopi Tanna; (right) Variable wheatear. PIc Courtesy/Ashwin MohanA long-billed pipit spotted at the park. PIc Cesy/Gopi Tanna; (right) Variable wheatear. PIc Courtesy/Ashwin Mohan

As the festive season warms up, two new visitors have joined the avifauna list at Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP), courtesy Bombay Natural History Society’s bird counting initiative that began earlier this year. “In February, we signed an MOU [Memorandum of Understanding] with SGNP for five years to document the bird species that visit the park,” said Asif Khan, programme officer, who coordinates the monthly bird counts along with Dr Raju Kasambe. The bird monitoring is supported by the SGNP staff, led by director G Mallikarjuna and Sudhir Sonawale, assistant conservator of forests. Last Sunday, they added the long-billed pipit and the variable wheatear to the list of avian species spotted in the park. “It is unusual to spot a variable wheatear here,” Khan shared, explaining that these are migratory birds who come from places like Afghanistan during the winter months. “However, they rest in the northern parts of India and are a rare sight in Mumbai.” Admitting that they have only spotted one bird of each species, he remarked that they could either be strays or birds looking to expand their feeding ground. “Only further research can bring us to definite conclusions,” he told this diarist.

Find your own rhythm 

Rehearsals for the annual play started earlier this year in AugustRehearsals for the annual play started earlier this year in August

After a three-year hiatus, Yash Charitable Trust’s annual festival Saarang Sandhya makes a return with a performance that aims at bridging the gap between the neurodivergent, neurotypical and the specially-abled. Over 50 participants will partake in the hour-long performance to commemorate International Day of Persons with Disabilities tomorrow at Bal Gandharva Auditorium in Bandra. “The show, which has been put together by co-trustee Sia Mirachandani, is titled Different Rhythms, One Heart. It is inclusive, and involves everyone, regardless of whether they are specially-abled or not,’’ said trustee Ashaita Mahajan. The staff members of the trust will also participate in the show. If that were not enough, performers will recreate scenes from films such as Munna Bhai MBBS, and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, among others. “The performance will include singing, dancing and a lot of drama. Everyone has been practising since August. The aim is to show that you can move at your own rhythm.”

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