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samedi 11 février 2012



Let alone the Stomach?

The distances covered over three previous generations were done in one flight, Air France Being 777-300, a long and boring flight.. a very pleasant Chinese taxi driver who deposits me in front of the Perak Hotel, Little India.
Look what I started my journey with: Champagne, couscous, pesto pita sandwich, passion fruit pastry…
As I arrived at the Perak Hotel, I could recollect very well the details of my last visit. To the Pleasant South Indian man, I said: I have been here before… and I was about to say, I recognize your face… I don't remember a south Indian man with a red dot in the forehead during my last visit.
I want to say I know your face, but the man I remember had no red dot on his forehead. He smiles broadly and says: this is a recent addition, sir.
Am I good observer ? Even though I don't speak Tamoul, I could tell him that he was speaking Tamoul, much to his surprise.

Study Social Anthropology!  It is the best education  any one can have in addition what ever your elected career is  
I desperately need to eat some South Indian Food. You are in luck, obviously he said, we are right in the middle of Little India… Apollo Banana Leaf Restaurant which has been here since 1974?
I had picked up El Pais in Paris and what better place than a South Indian Resto in the densest Indian part of Singapour (which itself did not exist about 150 years ago), while looking at bejewelled , kohl laden maidens and their slim acoomplices traverse this space as if I am in a dream? Outside, single men sit down in lines, each with a large beer bottle and chatting very loudly in Tamoul, perhaps of their longings to their native land whose music and smell is felt every where..
I have never been so happy being amidst hundreds of proto Dravidian Tamouls, some with garlands of jasmine, some portly, incense and bells and the smell of curry.
I am sitting at the Hotel Perak writing this , it is 4 pm in Paris on a Saturday and exactly 24 hours ago I left the house walking with a heavy heart to the station just minutes away, catching the 4 45 train to St Lazare and then a connecting bus and at Opera, the bus to the airport , arriving at 6 pm, and at 6 20 safely esconsed in the Air France Lounge Terminal 2 E with a glass of champagne in hand.. Was that just 24 hours ago?
Where did these proto Dravidian soft souled tamouls appear all of a sudden in my vista? And why am I so happy?
As a child I had taken a boat across the Bay of Bengal and today , this massive 777 flew across it, with its usual turbulence, just in hours…  It was time of innocence..
I admire the Chinese ingenuity and the hardwork they put into their enterprises. How can Air France fill (every single seat taken in every class) a 777 each day to Singapour. Majority of the passengers were either French or other European and also I felt the flavour of our southern land .. perhaps people catching on connecting QF flights to Melbourne Sydney Perth and Brisbane..
There were hardly any chinese passengers! Don't forget SQ also offers a flight daily and it is an airbus 380!
I was sad to leave Paris, but not sad to leave -6 C temperature and when we arrived after this long boring flight, it was 29 C…
But I did get to watch for the second time, Nader and Simin, A separation …. What a beautiful Movie.. how well portrayed are the tragedies of every day lives of the Iranians! Excellent Movie and I will toast the movie with champagne when it wins accolade a the Oscars this year..

A young child walked alone wondering at the colonial building and the padang… now the lights flicker, this carnival of modernity and it pleased me to no end that I was part of this , looking into this transformation of a beautiful butterfly….
While reading El Pais, I was a little saddened to read about the death of El Flaco, Spinetta, a porteno to the core, the eternal musician .. Also the Gulbenkian at Lisboa is having an exhibit of unpublished texts of Fernando Pessoa… After his death, it was revealed that he had written over 25 000 texts but hidden it from the prying eyes of the Nazi Regime of Salazar!

Dear Friends and Lovers as Pablo would say: take a deep breath, kiss your friends and send notes showing your love to those far away….and say thank you for the bright sunshine and the thunder that breaks the silence of the tropics …