Movie Review: Dear Zindagi is your zen


Film Review: Dear Zindagi

Producers: Gauri Khan, Karan Johar and Gauri Shinde

Director: Gauri Shinde

Cast: Alia Bhatt, Ira Dubey, Kunal Kapoor, Ali Zafar and Shah Rukh Khan

Rating: Three and a half stars

Movie still of Dear Zindagi

 

Director Gauri Shinde addresses a very important issue in Dear Zindagi, mental health, and dysfunctional minds that we all come face to face in an age plagued with personal and professional stress.

Dear Zindagi is a subtle movie, intelligently built around dialogues that take the narration forward and doesn’t sink into cliché which finds echo in a typical masala flick. It’s about Kaira, nicknamed Koko (Alia Bhatt) who faces relationship issues and aspires to make her independent short film one day. In a sheer stroke of luck, she crosses the path with the unconventional therapist Dr. Jehangir Khan (Shah Rukh Khan) who will alter the course of her life.

The film is about moments and delves deep into life and the ideology of deriving happiness by tasting the small things in life when we are battered. First thing first, Dear Zindagi is about treading the difficult path by depicting the complex relationships of the main protagonist whether it’s her battles, attention-seeking behavior and growing insecure at the same time.

Gauri Shinde takes us on a roller-coaster ride, a life’s journey worth taking where she offers high-octane levels moments and which contrast at the same time with the simple things that Kiara’s therapist reminds her about.

It is the simplicity of the film which forms an immense part of the narrative minus songs and dance, overt drama but a long conversation monolog that touches the soul in a searing manner. The dialogues are simple and effective whether it’s the chair theory of trying new ones to land something comfortable to slouch,  fear of failure or leaving memories but also about giving birth which is a choice for parents rather than making it a tough job.

Dear Zindagi asks disturbing and uncomfortable questions which are the true purpose of the film. It tears the heart going back to a young Kiara abandoned by her parents that ripped her of the joy of writing letters to her mom.

Alia Bhatt simply owns the film. She plays Kiara effortlessly, brimming with energy and explodes like a volcano on-screen. It’s a stark contrast to the icy cold and expressionless performance in SOTY and the scene where she broke down speaking on the choice of parents to give birth or being called a pathaka. She carries Dear Zindagi on her shoulders from start to finish, whether her mouthing in sarcastic tone or yelling. She is simply stunning and is one actor who has come a long way in such a short span of time. Alia does full justice to an author backed and challenging role that surprises everyone but as a performer, she ups the quotient every time, be it Highway or Udta Punjab.

Shah Rukh Khan plays the unconventional Dr. Jehangir Khan to perfection and is at his natural and charming best. It’s the kind of role that he should never be shy of trying his hands at, playing a character which is not larger than life. The charisma and endearing act of dispensing wisdom with a smile is priceless. Full marks.

The supporting cast composed of Ira Dubey as Fatima, Raguvendra (Kunal Kapoor) and Yashaswini Dayama as Jackie deliver competently and the girls add flavor to this journey of life. However, Ali Zafar is okayish in this blink-and-miss act trying hard to be the SRK of the 90s.

On the flip side, the script and screenplay lack the tautness that English Vinglish boasted of and which interrupts the rhythm majorly post interval. There are few innate details that should have been chopped on the editing table, be it un-necessary song, romance and extended length showcasing Kiara’s short film. It dilutes the layering and texture. The film would have been better had the director chosen to cut the length by 20 minutes.

On the whole, Gauri Shinde offers us a fresh film by shedding all gimmicks and addressing hard-hitting questions, lessons as well as a knockout performance by Alia and an endearing SRK act. Dear Zindagi belongs entirely to Alia Bhatt. It’s refreshing and thought-provoking at the same time. The film is life’s zen.

Love

V

 

Unwritten melody and sibling bond


Sweet melody.

crooning a new tune.

White swan.

Pure as love.

Bonding.

Making new waves.

Unwritten lyrics,

felt by the tinkling of hearts.

Affection.

Longing for emotions.

Sibling love,

not bound by blood.

Some relations are thicker than blood.

Bonding.

Beyond ages,

border and the sky.

It’s just meant to be.

Reunion after decade.

Nothing has changed and will not.

Brother-sister relations,

carved in heaven.

Mixed feeling.

Happiness.

Sadness,

It lies inside the heart.

Beauty of life,

whiff of wind stroking the senses.

Keep faith.

Love

V

#WedShadow: Mistakes of my life


I am a man of mistakes. I own them. It’s in my genes to make mistakes and screw up things by always blurting out the wrong things. I have made so much of mistakes and later expressing regret as an immature student or a young professional, the time I was one. As I hark back, I no longer look at them as mistakes but a great learning opportunity but also missed opportunities. Sharing my bucket list of mistakes.

Image sourced from: Google.

1. I was once rude to a friend and college love interest by shutting myself to her, refusing to scribble something in her scrapbook. I regretted it so much that it gnawed me for nine years. In the start of the year, I apologized to her on Facebook and we chatted for a while. She was sweet saying, “Always be nice to me.” I was relieved.

2. On the flip side, it’s a good thing to make mistakes and the irony is that we are so scared to blunder thinking that it will backfire and we never take the risks to grow be it at work or asking someone out. The worse is that we will be turned down or learn from it. I must be more adventurous. Risks taking can be empowering and make us grow as humans.

3.  It is one thing to make mistake and another one to accept them. Accepting our mistakes never make us small but we can learn from it. As an editor at work, I made several blunders but always owned up because I was keen to learn and not let negativity dampen my spirit.

4.  Earlier, I was not ready to accept my ‘mistake’ which happened three years back. After I quit the job, I was languishing and comparing my life to how good things was earlier. It was a life of regret. But, a huge mistake. Never compare your present no matter how bad it is to the glorious past. No matter what you do, things will not be rosy in pretty much the same fashion. Charter new path and create new memories. I am in a better position and exciting times now for I made effort  not to compare my present with my past. Keep them as memories but embrace the future.

5.  I am human and not flawless. It took me a long time to realize it’s ok to fail, to be disappointed, rejected or knocked down. Life is no competition or race against time. My mistakes showed me a precious insight and life lesson: Compete with yourself. Try to improve every second and raise the bar so high that at times you will fall behind but it will push you to exceed yourself. It’s not about putting someone down for it is never growth in the first place.

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This post is written as part of the prompt, ‘Write about making mistakes and accepting them’ for #WedShadow which I stumbled on Ruchi’s blog. You can share your link here.

How to Participate in #WedShadow?

  1. Follow @romspeaks and @ruchis28 on Twitter for updates.
  2. Prompts will be announced every Wed.
  3. Write the post and Link Up with Ruchie and Romila, share links on WebShadow 
  4. Read, comment, and share on at least two more posts linked in the party Pro Tip – Networking and commenting is good for your blog’s health and ranks.
  5. Use #WedShadow in your post and share in social media using the same hashtag.
  6. Grab Badge and flaunt it on your post.
  7. Every week we will have one featured blogger who is the best reflection of this community.

Love

V

Shikha Kumar’s capsule of Logically Stupid That’s Love


It’s her innate ability and sense to refuse to be wilfully pigeonholed in a specific genre of romance.  In an age where there is a bevy of authors churning boy-meets-girl-breakup-sex-and-don’t kiss and tell-tale, author Shikha Kumar dares to be different in concocting a palate of love to linger on our tongue. Her first Book, ‘She Fixed The Match She Fixed Him’ (HFMSFM) that garnered rave reviews and swooned hearts was all about finding love in a unique fashion, arrange marriage and world of conspiracy. Shikha calls her latest offering, ‘Logically Stupid That’s Love’ as one made of characters closer to real life and far away from the run-of-the-mill candy floss and saccharine tales.

Author Shikha Kumar at the launch of Logically Stupid, That's Love.

Author Shikha Kumar at the launch of Logically Stupid, That’s Love.

Shikha is no stranger to the world of books and social media. Her first outing will soon be made into a motion picture that earned her a place in the exclusive club of the fastest film-rights selling author. You can find this incidental author and qualified IT Manager writing columns on India’s leading newspaper TOI and DailyO, an Indian Today publication when she is not concocting cocktails of love.

Today, I host Shikha Kumar in this blog interview where she speaks on what makes her unique as a brand, her USP, Logically Stupid That’s Love taking you on a roller-coaster ride.

How real is Logically Stupid That’s Love in modern day romance? Shikha defines the characters as imperfect in a less than perfect world. “The book is as real as it could get. You would find Sahana and Kartik near you or even inside you. There is no fantasy or too-good-to-be-true element to my protagonists. They are imperfect, crazy and adamant in their own ways,” she adds.

The author believes that it doesn’t take a fairy tale to weave romance for it permeates our daily hum-drum of life. It’s the plain truth of love. ‘Logically Stupid That’s Love’ touches a raw nerve. There is romance, thrill and the dreaded balance between love and career. Shikha doesn’t believe that love is all about perfect or a magic potion that flickers our worries of the day in the dust. She brings the heart and the mind closer, logic meeting love. She says with an air of practicality, “We all have bills to foot and love fills the gap between the lives that is stuck in vicious circles. We don’t lose anything when we learn the art of juggling personal and professional life. Life is beautiful so is our responsibility towards it. Heart and mind must join forces to combat all battles and create a life worth dying for.”

Book Cover

The novel is about people who never valued life. Logically Stupid, That’s Love is about Kartik who sees no crime to work hard and touch the pinnacle of success, unwilling to let go of it for love. He calls Shahana as Miss Stupid. She calls him, Mr Logical. Shahana is a firm believer in love who waited for five years until reality shook her to the ground. Will love triumph with complex characters deeply rooted in their personal ideologies of career meeting love? Shikha muses, “It’s the perk of being a story-teller. I enjoy taking people into a brand new world and see life through various lenses. Deep down we are all believers in love but only a few consider it paramount that life is also a baggage of priorities. But, love decides for itself at times.”

“Mr Logical keeps himself busy with balance sheets. Ms Stupid actually balances all out. It’s a story to make you think how simple it is to live happily with both the heart and the mind in the right place,” Shikha lets the cat out of the bag.

One cannot help not to draw comparisons between both books of Shikha Kumar. I suspect a sense of deja vu with two diametrically opposed characters and wondered if the author has a surprise in store for us with a streak of sequel hiding somewhere, like thrillers.

mayura

Shikha Kumar with media & Business Strategist Mayura Amarkant.

book-launch-logically-stupid-1

Young guns making a beeline for Logically Stupid That’s Love.

Shikha says: “Two different plots, characters and situations. The underlying message of embracing life and believing in love is the same. She says HFMSFM was all about finding loved in the most turbulent manner embedded in an arranged marriage while Logically Stupid That’s Love is a striking equilibrium between career and love. Both would mesmerize in their own subtle way. It’s a promise.”

The NRI author and Indian to the core went on to promote her latest book in a rather unique fashion, going live on #Fame app and hosted her own show, ‘Love and Relationships’ where she doles out gyan. She is also the first Indian author to be styled by the international clothes brand Vinegar Fashion and during city tours, she counseled youth on matters of the heart through Master Classes on Heartbreaks & Heart Aches. Was it a conscious move to tap the pulse of the Indian youth with novels meets branding through Love and Relationships. Comparison or not to MTV’s Love School, one can’t deny that Shikha is taking branding to an entirely different level that will revolutionize the way we look at authors and books in India. It’s the right time to give authors their due.

Shikha gave a fantastic guest session on Love and Relationships at the Bedekar Institute of Management as part of their capsule on self-management and emotional intelligence for managers.

Mayura and Shikha (First and second from left) posing with guests at the launch.

Mayura and Shikha (First and second from left) posing with Dr Nitin Joshi, Director of Bedekar Institute of Management and a fellow professor at the launch.

Shikha takes it as a compliment whenever her books are compared to a movie-viewing experience. She honestly gazes, “It’s the brand that I am trying to sew for myself where the conversations take the story forward and wrapped in an entertaining capsule. The characters are pivotal to the story and capture the hearts of the audience in an effortless manner. It’s something they can relate to.”

The characters in the world of Shikha Kumar is not altered in a drastic manner or forcefully impose an event in her novels, a pitfall she smart avoids falling into.  It works in my favor, she says.

The story of ‘Logically Stupid, That’s Love is peppered in a smooth flow. As an author, her ultimate aim is, ‘To make people smile and leave them with hope for a beautiful life.” Isn’t what romance books worth its salt should be all about? Freshness, alluring and whiff of optimism. “A good read, value for money and no dull moments is my promise to the readers,” she waves off.

Book your copy of Logically Stupid, That’s Love here. You can connect with Shikha Kumar on Twitter, Facebook, and her website. The interview has been facilitated by one of my closest friend, the Mumbai-based Mayura Amarkant, Media & Business Strategist and Consultant to several companies.

Love

V

 

 

WoW: Seeking the soul in the mate


‘This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

WoW! Blogadda

 

A friend told me today during our snippet of conversation, “I am not your soul mate, just to make things clear.” She has a practical take on soul mates, it is the mate of the soul with whom you share a very special connection. No need to pretense. It’s all about being yourself or silence whether you say it with words or not.”

It got me thinking, who is my soul mate? The zillion friends I have on Facebook whom I never met but I have a special bond with or the folks I have passionate discussions about the vagaries of life, emotions, cosmic energy or the universe. Nah! That’s a different connection. Soul is the mate with whom the connection is made on an altogether different planet with whom we may or may not have a romantic or physical inclination. It is genderless, in fact.

In our journey and the quest to complete ourselves, we meet different people  with whom we hit a passionate and lyrical high which we often mistake as our soul mates. The definition of a soul mate is quite flawed, in my opinion. It happened to me ages ago when I fell in love with different someones’ with whom I’d share peppy, romantics SMSes and hanging out together thinking that she is the one for the emotional chord was so strong and powerful like lightning. I was convinced that the different Shes’ are the soul mates. We tend to be swayed and blinded by emotions like the smokescreen we wear on the face, convinced that she is the One. They were companions in the journey of life.

Dissecting on soul mates is complex, tricky and subjective. It got me wonder whether I am can be my own soul mate. There are two sides to me, the weak vs strong, emotional foolish vs reasonably mature and voices inside vs the body responding. The imaginary voice is one character that I want to introduce in the rom-com novel that I am writing and how he makes fun and pulls down the character afflicted by love. Can’t we be our own soul mate? Yet! This argument has several flaws since it may just be a pretending voice inside that soothes the hyper me that I am a strong person. It’s the fickle human nature.

It’s a tough self-analysis to make on The Special One, albeit, the soul mate, the one who takes hold of you when you are weakened by events and can hear your voice of distress or happiness. It shows that I haven’t really found one but the streak of soul mates through friends who helped me to hold on when the going was tough. It’s crazy how the human minds and bodies respond to something as deep as soul mates to make it very romantic, lyrical or glamorous.

I feel when the soul mate comes, she will make me feel uncomfortable and disturbing inside, someone who I wouldn’t let go easily. It’s all about connecting hearts and we can be One without emotional attachment or romantic fling. It will be someone who would   complete me as a person and together, we would become One whole and not tiny particles.  She will not be an ordinary girl or women who skim my path every single day but someone very special, beyond the ordinary who would push me to the extreme edge. She will be a very strong woman and the feelings that only the heart and soul can experience within.

The soul mate will be a woman or girl, it’s something that I feel very strongly about and know it deep within. Why I am insisting and oft-repeating woman or girl? I wouldn’t lend age to my soul mate. She can be older to me or very much younger, perhaps an 18-year-old girl. Why do we need to assign age or gender to a relationship between soul mates? I mean, we don’t need to prove anything to society. That’s what our relationship will be all about where there would be no moral or religious justification.

Wondering how and what the soul mate will be all about. I am a seeker. I shall seek in this journey of life and she will find me. I am a great believer in the guardian angel who has always sparkled my life with the extraordinary and she will be one angelic girl. Again, I may paint a wrong description of my soul mate but she will come in a form. I am not painting an idyllic or rosy picture but believe in the impossible made possible. We live in a world of possibilities. The soul mate is the stuff our dreams are made of yet very real and human to the core.

Love

V

 

Mumbai Diaries: First Monsoon tryst


Mumbai Diaries (June 2003):

I woke up to the usual morning raga of struggling to find myself in a new city and the world in itself, coming to terms with this culture shock where even an ant seems to be an alien. It’s been a little more than ten days in the city of dreams and flung into a universe kicking you in the bum. Yes! Mumbai is the land of opportunity but it does things to ordinary mortals, making you recoil like a snake on the defense.

The first Monsoon was a sheer delight as I stared in bewilderment at the clatter of rain hitting people on the face like the tiny grain of salt and brick of stone. Trees shook furiously and branches whooshed with siren like sound. Monsoon has hit Mumbai quite early, they said. The branches broke into tiny small pieces with the rasping sound of quilled papers and popped balloons.

I walked at leisure pace, waded out of the hostel at Churchgate facing Marine Drive but the moment I stepped out had to beat a hasty retreat inside the comfort and confine of the hostel. It was scary to brave the rain. A huge pool of water flew like current formed in front of the road where vehicles mumbled slowly on C-Road at Churchgate. There was no way I could traipse my way at Marine Drive. It could spell danger, my mind feared.

Image credit: Google/https://quintype-01.imgix.net/thequint/2016-06/84c578b1-1218-4104-be63-4ba1b0a1802f/mumbai-monsoon-hero-image.gif

You stand at the crossroad, the famous hostel entrance door when you are assailed by the rain and wind thrusting you backward as you struggle to open your umbrella that spun and twisted. You know the rain is the messenger when the phone trilled at the reception and the mama (security) calls your name which got you wondering who is calling in this wet morning when you trying to be a warrior battling fiery rain. It’s Parveen aunty, one of our family contacts, who informs that she is reaching the hostel in another 10 minutes to take you to her house.

It made you wonder how to stand in the rain and overcome the sea of water not to spoil your shoes, struggling with an umbrella for minutes before aunty lands in front of the gate. It becomes the mother of all tension during the first tryst with Mumbai Monsoon. It felt like swimming in the pool filled with branches, papers, used cans and garbage. Finally, the car screeched past the gate and your name is called by a beautiful girl, “Vishal! Get inside.” You hesitate as if someone is coming to kidnap you with the rain lashing at you as punishment for a crime you never did. You are shouted at, “Just get inside man, jaldi.” You muster all courage and come what may, jump in the water, almost slipped and a splash is heard behind as you throw yourself in the car, drenched in few seconds.

The yellow-and-black cab swirled its way past Marine Drive as you witnessed the inhabitants drenched and dancing in the rain, trees gyrated like it’s a dance party, water rising and waves crashing. It’s a beautiful sight which makes you feel good inside where you are separated inside the car from the people doing the happy somersault and soaked from top-to-toe, the hair becoming taking the shape of thick mound.

Image credit: Google/https://vishalbheeroo.files.wordpress.com/2016/11/29e91-marine-drive.jpg

It’s an enjoyable ride to feel the water knocking on the rear window of the old Ambassador and dry leaves stuck like glue on the windscreen as if monsoon whispered into their ear that it’s their private property. The car sauntered its way inside the Parsi colony at Mumbai Central when you are shaken off the dreamy layers of Monsoon to realize that the rain has mysteriously disappeared. You trudge the wooden stairs to make way inside the simple but spaciously done Parsi house and amazed at the ostentatious display of love in abundance and familiarity when uncle came back from work at Air India and the bonding with the niece that I thought was their daughter. There is no substitute to love.

A cup of hot tea warmed the stomach as we sat on bed reeling with laugh, gossip and watching TV that distracted the mind away from homesickness and battle with finding a foot in Mumbai. It was the first brush with the heavy rain that would usher in similar experiences, waiting to be drenched, traipsing past Marine Drive and strolling the entire area from Churchgate leading myself to Fort, Colaba, and Nariman Point.

The start of an everlasting love affair with the Mumbai Monsoon that stayed with me forever and memories crafted as I hark back with a smile on the drenched days.

With love

V

 

 

Remembering 26/11: bled to death, paid in blood


We bled to death.

Paid the price in blood!

A devastation and grim reminder,

that the human life has no value.

Scars remained.

Life wouldn’t be the same again.

Like the tender flower,

crushed to death,

we could never come to terms.

We may laugh and sing the anthem of life.

Yet! The fear instilled in us.

Perhaps, closure is such an abused word.

Humanity sank the lowest.

It was that day!

We abhorred it and hated to be reminded.

We should!

Face the demons!

Sacrifice of the unsung heroes.

Blood must be scrutinized.

Corpses lying in blood should rage in our minds.

Forgetting is no closure.

26/11

We remember the city bleeding and consumed in anger.

Remembering the dreaded terror attack in Mumbai 26/11, eight years back and the loss of lives.

V

Stormy affair, furious tide


Wind swirling and swaying,

like a wild child.

Tide rising like fury.

Roaring anger.

Black umbrella occupied every thin space in the city.

Who can stop nature’s wrath?

Umbrella and its people,

thrust backward and struggled to stand straight.

Foggy sky,

deserted road

and humans pleading for mercy.

Day of reckoning.

Trees fell apart.

Lightning struck.

City brought to a halt.

Cars swimming like paper boat,

on roads turned into vast swath of river.

Wind blew from afar,

like a loud siren wailing,

crossing the Arabian sea.

Wisp of smoke timidly surfacing in the sky.

Stormy affair.

The city and the rain,

bound by turmoil.

Love

V

 

 

Pune Memoirs (Part two): A filmy affair (2)


Pune Memoirs: 2004/2005

It’s becoming a painful process to retrieve events in my memory box in an orderly fashion between 2004 and 2005. It’s been more than 10 years since I started my second year in Pune and therefore, I shall write on specific memories that I can recall. Everyone knows that the film bug hit me very early where I dreamed of becoming a film actor and director in the Hindi film industry.

What do you do on a lazy, drab and boring Sunday with flatmates? We snuggled on the bed and watched Mujhse Shaadi Karoge on Cable TV in those days when the guy from the slum will come to fix the antenna for access to all the TV channels for a monthly 300 bucks, a far cry from today’s Dish TV which is splattered all over. We were sitting and watching the comedy flick when Neraj, our classmate came to leisurely spell, Amitabh Bachchan is in Pune shooting for Viruddh with John Abraham and Anusha. It was double dhamaka since my love for Bachchan knows no bound and I also had a major crush on Anusha Dandekar. It sent my pulses racing and the heart beat suddenly sprang longing to meet my idol who was in shooting in the city.

Spoilsport! It came with Adi who is perhaps one of the rare Indians who abhors Hindi movies and hell bent to dissuade me from watching the shooting of the film. Stop being hyper, he would chide me. He spat fireballs ranging from cautiousness of being roughed up by cops to being mad and not making sense at all. Our friends, Kusum, and her boyfriend Manish, along with Neraj went to try their luck at the shoot for a dekkho of the stars and I was waiting in anticipation cleaning my modest Kodak cam for a pic with Mr. Bachchan and Anushka, and kept a small book a small book of the former in my bag to grab an autograph. It was the evening when Adi called Neraj, “What’s happening over there? Usska Amitabh Bachchan dikha kya?” in reference to me. Bad luck! Apparently, it turned out to be chaotic with news spreading like wildfire and the crowd swarming to the shoot.

I was disappointed but this wouldn’t deter me to try meeting my idol. It was already evening and was in two minds to sneak in towards Deccan but finally abandoned all plans for the day. Manish was tempting me when we walked on FC Road for dinner as the movement of cars moved past us, “See, Amitabh Bachchan is inside this car.” Like an idiot, I turned around. He laughed, “Just imagine you are breathing the same air as Amitabh Bachchan.” It only reaffirmed my resolve to take the chance to be clicked with my idol.

A view of Deccan in Pune/Image sourced from https://upload.wikimedia.org

A view of Deccan in Pune/Image sourced from https://upload.wikimedia.org

The next day, I skipped the morning lecture and walked in the scorching sun for three to four kilometers, with the camera in hand to Deccan in the early morning. It was past 8.30 a.m. The bungalow’s gate was closed and guarded like a fortress. The crowd grew in numbers with the cops having a tough time and lathi charged to control the crowd standing on both sides of the road. The only solace was makeup van and camera equipment, assistant directors, makeup artists doing the running around outside the bungalow. We stood in the heat and waiting for the stars to come out or try our luck in the hope that the gate will soon open to fulfill our wish of rubbing shoulders with our favorite stars.

Patience was wearing thin on me and my stomach grumbled waiting for film stars without a morsel of food since morning. A college sweetheart called and asked the whereabout since she wanted to meet the heartthrob John Abraham and at the same time, some girls were yelling, ‘John! John! Come and kiss me.’ I kept walking to-and-fro past the gate where finally, I had a dekkho of Anusha who accompanied someone near her vanity van. Picture perfect! It was my reaction and I almost lost my heart to her. Her hair, green eyes, and flawless face was something to die. A blink-and-miss appearance. How I wish I could date her!

A dim hope surfaced after the security let a handful of people in after the crowd ran mad and pushing on the gate. As I followed the crowd going berserk and wading past the gate, I was stopped by the security who asked me to wait for them to come back. A lady entered and i sensed the chance handing the book of Amitabh Bachchan, requesting her to get me an autograph since the chances looked bleak to meet the country’s biggest superstar. The wait was long and spotted the lady from far and I ran in her direction but she told in the whole pushing, she forgot the book inside.

It was disappointing and I decided to go back to get the printed copies from the camera shots at Foto Fast Digital on FC Road. There were pictures taken during Rose Day in college much before the digi camera entered my life. The roll was emptied and just imagine my horror to see half of the pictures were burned for walking with the camera exposed in the sun. It was horrible, to say the least. What a day!

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My tryst with films continued in Pune when I almost became an extra, struggling to land into titbit of roles when someone told me about a shoot taking place in the city and my name was given to the crew. I received an sms that a bus will wait for us at Swargate depot. It was the start of a tedious and anxious journey with a large group of boys and girls ever ready to make the first step in the film world. It took a long time for the bus to finally kick the engine, caught in the traffic and stumbling towards the outskirt in Pune. Some were dressed in flashy clothes while people like me wore denim and tee. I was amused to see aspiring actors wearing such jazzy clothes and was like, who wear such sort of clothes for a shoot?!

The bus stopped in a deserted place and we waited in anticipation for the casting guys to usher us out at the shooting location. It was hot sitting inside the bus for hours and so irritating to made to wait like this when those guys mysteriously disappeared. We asked one of the guys inside the bus whether the film crew will ever come. Finally, someone came after three hours and we were asked to stand up where few guys and girls were pointed out at. They walked like film stars and scampered out of the bus.

The rest of us were asked to stay inside which means we were not selected and the bus turned around to drop us to our destination back in the city. You know the joke turned on me? The same guys whom I laughed and at were selected for wearing jazzy clothes. Apparently, it was for the shoot of a song sequence. I was dejected for being rejected as an extra, that too inside a bus.

I went back to the flat and slept for a while to let the feeling of rejection to sink in. The flatmates and friends were quite supportive despite the fact that I was awkward, ashamed to say that I was turned down. Adi gently told me that I should try for casting and can be an agent to hire extra and junior artists. Neraj told me not to worry for a crew will soon land in Pune with Ajay Devgan and Sanjay Dutt in tow and junior artists will be needed. He even called one of his cousins who was involved to confirm. The funny thing is when the time came, the crew decided at the last minute not to come to Pune and the film was shelved.

My story of struggle with films could well be made into a comedy of error during my Pune days.

Love

V

Journey of life


Stars in the sky;

Limitless road;

 

Push the doors wide open;

Be the flying star;

Believe;

Dare;

Fly:

Close the eyes;

Chase the dreams;

No mountaineer slope is too big to climb;

No dream is too mammoth to achieve;

Don’t start;

Flock like the pigeons,

chasing their destinations.

You are the bird flapping its wings,

to conquer the world.

The time has come;

It’s Now.

Don’t fall prey to the over thinkers;

It kills the enthusiasm;

O! Traveller!

Let the light shine on your journey.

With love

V