When the British were in Calcutta, they started a club called The Saturday Club. Years later, they left. But inadvertently, it would seem, that they left behind an immaculate construction of unintended English humour. I caught this notice on the club’s main notice board, it reads,
“EMERGENCY/FIRE ESCAPE ACCESS IS THROUGH LADIES’ DRESSING ROOM”
Two very important people I met on this trip were Amyt-da, my ex-guitar teacher. I disclosed, with utter embarrassment, that I have started to teach. Which left him speechless and his fingers stuck on the fretboard for about 3 bars after which he coaxed out a burpish “good” from an unknown vibration of his vocal chord. Skinny Alley, is coming out with their second album soon, so stay tuned.
The other important person was Letu, my 8 year old niece, thusly named ’cause she came into this Earth 6 days late. We played badminton on the road (since the goons at Saturday Club would not let us play during lunch hours) and I taught her a trick or two before my breath ran out the door. We went over to The Forum, a mall, where we ate and shopped a bit. It is a strange Calcutta, very distant from the one I knew. Caught between the forces of traditionalism and consumerist validation, the city and its folks trudge on the daily grind of exceptional existence. Every visit to Calcutta makes me think. This time is no different. I am still thinking (and this is serious so you should, too) how come Marie biscuits get so much of advertising budget ? Tell me.