Unforgettable tour concert!

Written on 10:11 AM by Minu Agarwal

(Review of Unforgettable tour concert near San Francisco on July 27th,08)

It all started with a month long contemplation of whether to go or not. There are concerts taking place in bay area every now and then but then we thought what can be bigger than Mr. AB, jr. AB, Ash, Madhuri, Preity all on one stage. I follow Amitabh’s blog religiously and read updates about the concert preparations on it which excited me even more to attend this concert. I had never seen a celebrity in my life so this was gonna be my first time!

We got the tickets online from Sulekha.com. Someone told me that it’s better to go early since there are chances of getting stuck in the traffic and not finding a parking spot near the Arena. The show was at 7pm and we reached the venue at 5:45. We had packed Tiffin and carried cameras, binoculars and camcorder. After reaching the entrance we saw a looong queue waiting for the doors to open and heard announcements telling the viewers to not carry any electronics and food items insideL. So we had to leave everything in the car.It was cold and breezy that evening and we waited for more than an hour in the queue freezing! Everyone was dressed up as if they were to attend a wedding! When the doors finally opened the crowd went helter-skelter, queues were broken and a huge mass tried to squeeze through narrow doors. It reminded me of the chaotic situation outside Indian temples.

Oracle Arena is a huge Auditorium accommodating nearly 10,000 people. The stage was very well placed and big screens were put up for close views of the stage. Soon the show started with a performance of bay area Bhangara group. Following that started the solo performances of the stars. First came Ritesh Deshmukh, he danced really well and connected with the audience wonderfully. His energy level was great and his dance choreography was the best amongst all. Then followed Preity, performing on the signature song attached to her image, yes it was Pretty Woman! The most impressive part of her performance was the total dress change that she did in less than 10 seconds. Then Abhishek made a ‘dhansu’ entry from the audience. Ash’s solo performance was just mediocre because it started with ‘Crazy kiya re’ western number which doesn’t suit her image. She looks best in Indian outfits and shouldn’t have started with a western style song. Jaya Bachchan gave a short speech about global warming with a straight face.

As expected, Amitabh was legendry on stage. He sang multiple old songs in an unshakeable voice which made us think whether it was all prerecorded. He performed a sentimental scene from Deewar which was beyond words. He had tears in his eyes at the end of the scene to make it realistic.Among ladies, Madhuri absolutely stole the show! From ‘Ek-Do-Teen’,‘Dhak Dhak’, ‘Dil toh pagal hain’ to ‘Aaja Nachle’; every piece was classy. ‘Dola re’ by Ash and Madhuri was beautiful.

The show went on for more than 4 hours and surpassed all our expectations. The props used during all performances were really creative and side dancers from Shiamak Dawar’s academy were outstanding.

Here are a few pics clicked during the show by one of my colleagues (Officially it wasn’t allowed. But the heck, we’re desis:D)

It truly was an unforgettable experience…

Why do we do this?

Written on 4:09 PM by Tushar

Came across a nice advt. Makes sense except the yes/no part in the end:)

Interpreter of maladies and Unaccustomed earth

Written on 6:43 PM by Tushar

Jhumpa Lahiri is phenomenal as an author!

'Interpreter of Maladies' totally deserves the Pulitzer Prize which it received in 2000. Stories in both books deal with 'an immigrant experience' something which I'm personally going through. Characters in her stories are mostly (Bengali) Indian immigrants and are torn due to cultural differences between their native land and US. After reading Wikipedia
entry on her, I realized that protagonist in her stories is mostly inspired by her personal life. Jhumpa's parents moved to US when she was three. Her family kept visiting Calcutta every summer. She changed her name from Nilanajana to Jhumpa as she thought it was too embarrassing (?).Remember Gogol Ganguly from her novel ‘The namesake’?

It is often said that Jhumpa portrays lives of Indian immigrants as dull. After reading her book I can say that this accusation holds water.But even though her characters are not leading a very colorful life a reader can easily relate with them.For me, transition to US(the country and its culture) came naturally but when my parents paid me a visit a couple of months back I was trying really hard to keep them engaged in something or the other so that they would not feel bored or more importantly “out of the place”. I had made a plan for every weekend and successfully executed it as well. In hindsight such a scheme will work for a couple of months or even for a year. But what if they have to move here permanently leaving their motherland or karma bhoomi behind? Will that transition be easy for them? May be since I had these thoughts running in my head while reading these books I thoroughly enjoyed them.

Highly recommended!

English August

Written on 6:30 PM by Tushar

One of my friends suggested that this book might be a good read as the movie based on it was hilarious.

This book is written by an
IAS officer himself so maybe I was expecting too much.The plot looked promising as well...A rookie IAS officer moves to a small town called Madna and experiences the corruption, bureaucracy, difficulties in running an administration first hand. (I am simply fascinated by Indian Administrative Services. At some point I wanted to become a part of it. Given that I am 25 I still have 3 more years to take the plunge if my current profession gets too boring!)

It is a known fact that bureaucracy can lead to pretty hilarious situations...Yes Minister or The office lovers please stand up!
But instead this book gave me an impression an IAS officer who is no less than a king in a small town completely ignores the welfare of people and drinks whiskey,smokes marijuana during daytime to compensate the cultural shock of suddenly moving to a small town from a big city...Maybe after first 150 pages(that's when I stopped reading it)
the rookie gets out of his depression and every page in this book is filled with witty remarks and funny situations but I could not stand it...

Not recommended.

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