We were in town over the weekend. I love that part of the city. It is old and experienced and smells of a time that men wore hats and women carried parasols. Well, perhaps they did not actually do so but well, one is given to flights of fancy in this heat when hats and parasols would be a damn good idea. Anyhow, so at some point we drove past the Royal Opera House. Wiki tells me that it was built in 1912 and was India's only opera house. It is a really old building (duh, 1912) and is completely in shambles. The tall doors are locked and covered with years of dust and grime.I looked at it, mesmerized.
Me: Mahesh, look at this building. I am sure it was owned by a rich seth (frames of Guru Dutt era films furiously running riot in my mind). He would have fallen in love with the leading lady of the opera. She would have been beautiful and spoilt. She would not have reciprocated his love and broken-hearted, he would have shut the opera house and gone abroad where he would have lived a reclusive life to the end of his days. Since then, the Opera House would have been locked down. What do you think?
Mahesh: This is prime real estate. It should be broken down and an apartment building built here. Ha ha ha!
After being threatened to be cut off altogether if we did not watch Gulaal, we finally complied. As it turned out, it was a good decision. As usual, we will leave the reviews to the experts. It is heartening to see this new style of film-making from the likes of Vishal Bharadwaj (hey, wasn't he supposed to adapt Romeo and Juliet for his next, what happened to that?) and Anurag Kashyap co-exist with the Karan Johars and Yash Chopras of Bollywood. I wouldn't want to do away with either.
The film was nice of course but the lunch at Tea Center was even better. It's one of my favourite places in Mumbai, one of those old-fashioned places that make you think that Mumbai is not a half-bad place to live in. It is a real tea-room, complete with one of these on each table!
I always stuff myself silly when I go to Tea Center. Yesterday was no exception. After the paneer pakoras and biryani and aloo-paranthas, I still had space left over for a delicious caramel custard. Do you have a restaurant that forces you to overeat?