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January 22nd, 2019

Too, too cute!

On a scale of totally wonderful wedding anniversary wishes, this one is a perfect 10 🙂

Sometimes, India makes me laugh out loud with delight, & these charming wishes did just that!

January 7th, 2019

Anyone for a coddling grip?

I made a New Year Resolution to digitise all my thousands upon thousands of transparencies.

Back in the day, before digital photography ruined my livelihood, I used to work for about 20 different photo libraries around the globe, supplying them all with photos. So I have a mammoth task in front of me, in terms of numbers of images to be scanned and, naturally, emotional trips down memory lane.

I’m sharing some of the images on my Instagram feed @decadeography, and others I’ll share with you here.

Like this cracker from late 1980s Delhi.

Talk about wordy advertising 😛 but with all that passionate and tantalizing […]

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January 6th, 2019

So farewell, then, gorgeous fairy lights

It’s not even 10 o’clock in the morning and I am already feeling bereft.

Downcast.

An empty, undecorated void in my heart and, most glaringly obvious, in my home.

Today, 6 January, is the day I take down my Christmas decorations.

We did it on this date in my childhood home, on the basis that 6 January is when the 3 Kings are supposed to have arrived to see the baby Jesus. I never quite got it why all the jolly decorations had to come down on the very day royalty rocked up, but there you go. Traditions are […]

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December 27th, 2018

When a wedding almost goes to the dogs…

…in the BEST possible way, I hasten to add.

Last week was a happy week full of the celebrations leading up to the Sunday wedding of 2 cool young friends of ours, Alisha Mehra & Kula Naidu.

It was a wonderful few days of happy celebrations, with friends and family, as well as the 2 family dogs who played a starring role.

The dogs wandered through all the pre-wedding festivities with great aplomb, even joining people on the dance floor at the mehendi.

But come the wedding on a beautiful sunny Sunday, and the dogs were so stellar they […]

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December 11th, 2018

Happy 107th birthday New Delhi

107 years ago today, at the Delhi Coronation Durbar, King George V announced that the capital of India would be shifted from Calcutta to Delhi, where a new city would be built – New Delhi.

Gosh.

I could, of course, be really immature, and say that 107 years later, Delhi is still not finished, a massive work in progress, but that would be un-birthday-like.

So I won’t.

Instead I shall wish the city that is now my adopted home a very happy birthday.

New Delhi is a city that infuriates me much of the time, a city beset with […]

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December 7th, 2018

There are times when I despair of Delhi

Yeah, I know, I know.

I sometimes give Delhi a hard time.

Well, quite frankly, and at the risk of upsetting anybody yadda yadda yadda, quite often this city is not a particularly likeable place.

Anyone who follows this blog will have read, over the months and years, endless tales of sexual violence of the worst kind, as well as endless tales of pollution of the worst kind.

Now I give you crass, stupid, dangerous vandalism.

Last month, a bridge was inaugurated in east Delhi.

Conceptualised in 1998, started in 2004, it was finally opened (though it is still not […]

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November 23rd, 2018

Dying in the so-called name of God

Right, cards on table time.

I am a Christian. But I have no truck whatsoever with missionaries who seek to convert.

Equally, let me hasten to add, I take great exception to people not being allowed to convert if they so wish – which is a perennial issue here in India.

My view is that the decision to practise one’s religion or not, to convert to another faith or not, is a private one, and that outside bodies have absolutely no right to interfere.

So, having said that, let me share with you a tale of crass stupidity and ignorance […]

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November 22nd, 2018

Sadness, rudeness & a little piece of history

This has been a tough week for my husband and his family.

In the space of 3 days, 2 members of Himmat’s family died – a first cousin and an aunt.

Both memorial services (the “bhog”) were held, with just a day between them, at the Gurdwara Damdama Sahib, a Sikh temple near Humayun’s Tomb.

Not only had I never been to this gurdwara, I’d never even heard of it before, which is surprising, since it has quite some history attached to it

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November 21st, 2018

The worst-protest-ever that became the best-protest-ever!

I have never lied to you, have I?

All these years, I have always faithfully told you the truth about India, varnished or unvarnished.

So trust me, friends, when I tell you that this article is SO totally worth reading, right to the end 🙂

This is India at its daftest &, paradoxically, at its wisest.

Quick bit of background info, before you start reading. Babur, about whom the protesters were up in arms, was the founder of the Mughal dynasty and died in 1530.

Yes, you read that correctly. 1530.

Anyway, read on and enjoy!

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November 6th, 2018

Every dog has his day

And for our dogs, Tommy & Yoko, today was the day.

Along with thousands of dogs in Nepal, our dogs are honoured today on the occasion of “Kukur Puja.”

Such a lovely festival.

I found a very informative blog about this festival, and the contrast between the Indian and Nepali way of celebrating Diwali is quite stark – though in India’s defence, the ban on firecrackers this year has (thus far) reduced the noise levels, and the pain and fear inflicted on animals, street dogs in particular.

Nar Bahadur was sitting petting Yoko yesterday, muttering about how the dogs hate […]

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November 5th, 2018

Delhi’s toxic mess is getting worse

I am not asthmatic.

I have no allergies.

(For the record, as a child, I used to say I was allergic to cream doughnuts, but that was because of a particularly disastrous road trip…I’ll spare you the details…)

So, no, I’m not allergic. I’m not asthmatic.

For my age I’m reasonably fit.

Exercise.

Need to lose 2/3 kg, but don’t we all?

Don’t smoke.

So why am I wheezing and coughing and spluttering?

Why are my eyes stinging?

Why do I feel borderline breathless?

THIS IS WHY.

THIS!

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November 2nd, 2018

Seeing Delhi differently

Today began in the pre-dawn darkness, as I headed off through the streets of Delhi, to meet up with one of my running friends, Sunil Punshi, who was taking me to Yamuna Ghat.

I was last there in probably 2008 or 2009 (pre-Commonwealth Games, that’s for sure) and was keen to see the river again, and at dawn, inspired by the fabulous photos Sunil shares on his Instagram feed (if you don’t already follow him, you should!)

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