Another Brick in the Wall

Last night I had a vivid, larger than life but a really strange (strange!) dream.

I’ve come to a top-notch, pretty chi-chi, super luxury resort, spread over the length & breath of an island. Everywhere I look, I see beautiful things and glamorous people. I am so chuffed about being here – after all the years work and clever thinking – I am finally at the place of my dreams. Wide-eyed and delirious with joy, it took me a while to realise that everyone at the resort looked similar. At first I couldn’t see it but then boom, it struck me. Everyone is wearing a ‘crown’- a conical contraption made of gold and shiny jewels. Some crowns are super shiny and large, others either a bit jaded or small but every guest is wearing one. That is, everyone except me. 

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Thinking the ‘unthinkable’ : My experiment with Anti-Excess

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Almost everyone who knows me, knows this – I am a material girl. Infact I am so materialistic that even materialism needs a pair of sunglasses to look at me. No kidding!

Perhaps which is why I should be surprised at my own surprise when I saw two double door wardrobes, a 6-feet clothes rack, two side boards and one chest of drawers bursting at the seams when I moved with ‘just my essentials’ to my new, even if temporary abode in Bambolim, Goa.

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A heady rush of magic & satisfaction

To see Jodhpur Flamenco & Gypsy Festival culminate into a gloriously successful event is one thing, the rush to produce it so it reaches its zenith is another! And I have to admit I am addicted to the latter.

I remember flying down to Jodhpur in January (2014) to meet the organisers of a new festival on the horizon – they took me on a tour of the venue (the majestic Mehrangarh Fort) and told me about their amazing programming idea: Jodhpur Flamenco and Gypsy Festival which was scheduled for March (2014). The only problem was that while they had it all planned out in their mind  – the sponsors, partners and therefore artists were yet to come on board! Not one. Nada.

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My Gypsy Journey

In the midst of all the usual chitter chatter of a Delhi party,  my friend Ramon Blecua asked me “do you know where all the gypsies in the world come from?” I responded with a blank look! “I’ve never really thought about it” I said. As the conversation progressed, I learnt that gypsies all over the world trace their lineage to India, with a significant wave which migrated from Rajasthan. “Is it a surprise then”, he said, “that even centuries later, the Rajasthani folk music and Spanish Flamenco resonate with common threads?” As Minister Counsellor at the Embassy of Spain in Delhi, he is involved in many projects to build cultural bridges between India & Spain, and his most recent baby was the Jodhpur Flamenco & Gypsy Festival (JFGF) – a project dedicated to bring musicians from Spain, Rajasthan & other Gypsy traditions to collaborate, learn from each other & create beautiful music! In a ‘aha’ moment that followed, he asked me the golden question – would I like to meet the organizers of this global project and perhaps work for JFGF? “You are perfect for it” was the last thing I heard before he walked away to join his partner, the very lovely Nupur, on the dance floor.

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