Tuesday, February 11, 2014

One of those days

I woke up early today. It was still dark and cold. My friend, Gia, was pottering about in the kitchen. She is on a General Motors diet and has decided to cook her own food. That really is the best way to stay on a diet, I suppose: plan your meals and cook them yourself. Sounds of shuffling feet (mine) and steady snips of parsley (hers) fill up the kitchen. She offers to make me tea. I agree and sink into the sofa. I reach for my phone and check a few messages. Then I flip through a Vogue, looking at an incandescent Katrina Kaif wearing a pale pink feather gown applying shell-pink gloss to her lips. Her eyes are smudged with a soft grey eyeliner and a bounteous curl frames her face. She reminds me of something very fragile and fleeting - like the really fine slices of Japanese ginger Terrtulia adds in one of their pear and ginger martinis.

Terrtulia. With the wooden board that says, "Eat, Drink, Love."

It's a restaurant in Koregaon Park that I really like. Sometimes, the food is outstanding. And I do mean otustanding. Other times, it's very good. I don't imbibe and am a vegetarian. As a result, I don't find many Italian or Continental restaurants interesting anymore. Their menus are not for those like me. There is very little thought given to adults who choose to not drink or eat meats. Usually, the vegetarian options use heavy, cream or cheese sauces and the non-alcoholic beverages use a cream or sweet.

Not Terrtulia. I absolutely love their fruit Margaritas without liquor, especially the Kiwi Margarita. It's tart and spunky with fresh kiwi slivers lining up the glass. In food, they have a Spinach and corn quiche which is a baked treasure. And their pizza with rucola leaves. This, I think, must be in every order whether one is a vegetarian or non-vegetarian. The way those leaves are cooked - it's a study in perfection. The pizza base is thin and lightly coated with a herbed tomato sauce. There are few slices of pepper and olives and a few of these leaves are just coarsely plucked and placed on the top. It's all dusted off with a little cheese. That pizza is really a masterful piece of work.

Speaking of masterful pieces of work, I attended the Kala Ghoda festival the other day. It is so delightful this year - all bright colours, some really nice stalls (I loved the long, asymmetrical linen dresses and draped kurtis by this brand called 'K' or 'Kaveri'.) There were street sellers peddling neon green and pink pin-wheels that added a burst of freshness in the bright afternoon light. There are some quirky, cheeky installations that catch the light of the Mumbai afternoon sun. A conglomeration of large shards of glass caught splintered images of strangers. Three large postboxes were spray-painted with pictures of movie-stars and tied together with ropes. I didn’t get the point but the hot pinks and charcoal black worked their magic. There was a large canvas, ripped and perforated. It was supposed to represent the changing light of the Bombay sun, the shifting moods of the Arabian Sea. Right at the end of the Kala Ghoda exhibition strip, there was a large canvas shaped like a tree. Large mosaic wheels composed in the form of a tree were displayed and these wheels themselves were pieces depicting something of the city - dinky autorickshaws, huts, stripsof roads, people. 

But I think my favorite part of the art exhibition was what happened outside the exhibition. A seller had a huge stack of beautiful rings arranged on a large slab of glass. There was an infinity ring studded with two diamonds and had very interesting detailing. If you looked at it from a distance, it looked like an owl. Only on a closer look could you see the infinity motif. There was a stunning scorpio ring in green and black stones,  a thick python one in aqua and yellow stones with garnet-splinters for eyes and fangs. There was a simple silver one that looked like a ghungroo. And one really exquisite piece in some kind of black, onyx like stone that was cut like a champagne flute. It was so delectable! 

In any case, most of these were under 400 rupees and lay neatly on a large slab of greenish glass. There was some jostling when a crowd moved past the seller, the slab fell from his hands, and it shattered. Suddenly, there were these shards of green everywhere and dozens of glittery and oxidized jewelry. What really was artistic, though, was how the seller went about remedying the situation. Instead of just clumping back the jewelry somewhere, he simply rearranged the shards irregularly and positioned some jewelry on each fragment. It was so lovely! To see him fashion a pedestrian showroom for stuff right there!

There's art, there are memories, and there's the road on which both things happens. Some days I think of that.


Puneet said...

you write so well.
now i want to go to 'Terrtulia' right now :D

mukta raut said...

Thanks Puneet! Yes, you must. Let me know if you like it.