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Mumbai Diary: Tuesday Dossier

Updated on: 21 May,2024 06:49 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Team mid-day |

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

Mumbai Diary: Tuesday Dossier

Pic/Shadab Khan

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Mumbai Diary: Tuesday Dossier

Cooling off period

Police and Home Guard personnel take a break from the searing temperatures under the awning of a Kurla lassi stall. 

How to revive musical instruments 

Joydeep Mukherjee with the revived sur-rababJoydeep Mukherjee with the revived sur-rabab

After 16 months of dedicated work, Sangeet Natak Akademi awardee Joydeep Mukherjee has revived two ancient instruments — Tanseni rabab and sur-rabab. The instrumentalist, previously credited for reviving nearly-extinct instruments mohan veena and sursingar, tells this diarist that Tanseni rabab is the father of sursingar. “It is the missing link between the Afghan rabab and sursingar. So, when I am taking the instrument sursingar ahead, I need a reference in hand for my audience to explain that it came from the Tanseni rabab,” Mukherjee explained. “Both sur-rabab and Tanseni rabab were heritage instruments of the Senia Gharana. The latter was created some 500 years ago in the 16th century by Miyan Tansen, while the former was created in the Bengal of 1880s by Ustad Abdullah Khan of the Senia Shahjehanpur Gharana by mixing Tanseni Rabab with Sursingar,” he revealed. His dadaguru Pandit Radhika Mohan Maitreya also played the Tanseni rabab “I needed to carry on the legacy,” he added, promising that he will play both of these newly revived instruments at his upcoming concerts across the country.

Busy bees 

Handmade home for bees; (right)  Dr V ShubhalaxmiHandmade home for bees; (right)  Dr V Shubhalaxmi

It was World Bee Day yesterday, and Dr V Shubhalaxmi, naturalist and founder of Ladybird Environmental Consulting, decided to create a handmade bee-home. “Anybody can make it. Take an empty can and insert dried twigs of giant milkweed cut to fit the size of the can. Hang it with a rope to your garden, balcony or any shaded space, and voila, you have a home that solitary bees can nest in,” she explained, adding that solitary bees are often found nesting in sockets or key holes of houses. “Mumbai is home to many species. The most common ones are honey bees. To them, ceilings of railway stations or ledges in tall buildings are like mountains; somewhere they can be comfortable and sheltered. Carpenter bees are also commonly spotted. They are a type of solitary bees. Another species that few are aware of its existence in the city are stingless bees; they do not sting, are only about one-cm huge, and find homes in tree trunks,” she shared. Writing off the common fear of being stung, she said, “For some reason, we humans think that all animals are out there to harm us. But this is not the case, and especially not with bees. They are top-class pollinators. For every fourth bite of food we take, we have a bee to thank,” she reminded us. 

Quilted memories for Bharti Singh

A section of the memory quilt; (right) Bharti Singh. Pic Courtesy/wikimedia.comA section of the memory quilt; (right) Bharti Singh. Pic Courtesy/

Prabhadevi’s Harshita Gupta loves to turn overflowing closets into vibrant bedding and memorabilia. Founder of a family venture that upcycles used clothes into quilts, bed sheets, soft toys and more, Gupta’s latest work is a series for comedian Bharti Singh. “She had nearly 400 items from her child Golla’s closet that she wanted us to upcycle. And like most moms, there was a lot of emotional attachment to her child’s first set of clothes,” Gupta revealed, who crafted a memory quilt comprising the child’s old overalls, socks, and bibs for the family. “What better way to preserve your firstborn’s memories?” Singh stated in a recent vlog on YouTube. “Families usually express their wish to use all the available material to avoid discarding any parts. To accommodate the request, we made a memory bear plushie from the leftover patches of Golla’s clothes,” Gupta revealed to this diarist. For more details, log on to @amarememoire. 

 Harshita Gupta Harshita Gupta 

Sorry, no space for stray dogs

The girls get a cab after a two-hour-long wait. Pic Courtesy/Pradeep DhivarThe girls get a cab after a two-hour-long wait. Pic Courtesy/Pradeep Dhivar

Last week, two college-going sisters from Mankhurd, Aarti Chourasiya and Soni Raju Choudhary, set out in the afternoon to find treatment for their pet stray, Sheru, who was wrapped in their arms. “The veterinarian in our area suggested that we needed to take him to the animal hospital in Sewri,” the girls shared. While they were able to find a kaali-peeli from Mankhurd, they were dropped off mid-way by the driver without any plausible reason. The girls tried to hail another taxi to ferry their ill friend to the hospital but all taxis refused after seeing a dog. They even booked a ride from an aggregator cab, but the driver cancelled it the moment he saw the dog. “We waited two hours to get a cab, but then gave up and started walking towards the hospital in the heat. It is always the case with cabs; they refuse to take dogs in vehicles. Luckily, we met someone en route who helped us get a kaali-peeli. Now, Sheru is fit again,” Choudhary revealed.  

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