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amethyst

it’s an old heritage-like house converted into a restaurant.

 a cutely built old fashioned structure with round pillars in three porches on either sideand trees and plants of myriad variety all over the courtyard.in between them, there are tables and chairs made out of rosewood for people to sit.

only the courtyard, porch and living room (which is huge) is amethyst part.

it has a very zoroastrian look n feel… the kinda old parsi houses on the countryside etc..it’s a stubbornly quiet place, and the occasional sounds of leaves brushing against the breeze, a cuckoo adds to the natural ambience..  u generally go to amethyst for a breakfast or brunch… you should take something to read with you and sit there lazying about having cereal or toast with jam while you surf through your novel…

café latte was really good here, they made my kinda version with whatever i explained (i never was satisfied with café coffee day’s or barista’s )

rating : really recommended, you must go.

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chennai open

‘twas a purrrrrfect saturday J household stuff was getting over by afternoon and we had a heavy brunch at amethyst, a place i love… mid afternoon around 3-ish anand’s friend called and we had got one of the sponsors’ passes to  chennai open semi finals, which he had asked for last week.super superbly, there wasn’t any traffic in the market area (where drivers usually get traumatic due to the same reason) and we were home in record 5 minutes!! quickly freshened up and left for the stadium.

but you cant be lucky with traffic everytime and reached the first semi finals 1 set later…it was between youzhny and cilic. youzhny won.honestly i was busy going to canteen and buying food in between sets, and you’ve got to wait till a game gets over to go in/ out so didn’t get deep into the match…. this one. 

then came the demi gods… for the second semi final… rafael nadal vs karlos moya.and boy!!! what a match… i mean wow, what a mtach!!! every point in every game was a shrewd battle, tie breakers went on till score 9… moya is a favourite of the chennai city as he has been coming down to chennai open championships consistently for last three years and has been winning too… so in spite of he being seed 16 and nadal being seed 2,  most of the applause and cheering went to moya…like anand, there were few who cheered for nadal..

cheering up someone, makes elephant-sized huge difference,  saw it with proof  that day,that psychological feeling, that confidence makes all the difference, seriously, moya was playing well consistently, chasing up nadal on every point and sometimes scoring ahead of him… there was consistency, concentration and systematic attempt and calm attitude in his game…  on the other hand, nadal a 21 year old spanish, is born talented. talent oozes, even out of his weakest shots… he is sporadic,  loses oncentration (and few points) to moya and then at some deciding point, he suddenly makes up all and leads moya… every, literally every game was a deuce, advantage to either and then deuce again… literally everytime…  in the end nadal won, albeit vulnerably but moya was the hero of the evening…

the match took close to 4 hours…

nadal admitted that it was a tough match and moya had never played so well before. since both hail from the same country, they are also the best of buddies.

for all the details : http://www.chennaiopen.org/  since we had those special passes, we got to have dinner in the vip lounge of the stadium, it was from the park, one of the sponsors, we got to mingle with the likes of  charu sharma and have been lucky to be snapped with vijay amritraj…

left early. at 12.30 am.

ate idly on sunday. it made us happy.

       

pirates of the curried beans

theres this ngo organisation called ‘little theatre’, which was putting up a play, we being a part of the sponsors were invited. the play was going to be an all children play as the name suggests and was called ‘pirates of the curried beans’

the proceeds go into sponsoring education for underprivileged kids, and its an ongoing and successful effort for the last 35 years now … that’s quite some consistency. we reached the venue expecting whatever anyone can of a kids play. however we got the shock of our lives !! awesome sets, changing sets with light effects at that, elaborate costumes, kids with perfect diction and accents like pirates, and the professional choreography and well spun story made every minute of it interesting…

 

the play was about a ship and its crew of pirates out to find some treasure and how one thing leads to another… but it was a complete original story and nothing to do with the movie series on pirates..

 

there was a kid girl who played a jack sparrow replica, her body language, her swaying around, even when she was dancing, every minute of those 2 hrs she was perfect! there was another kid who played a calypso replica and another guy who played captain burbossa …

apart from around 5-6 main lead characters, there were lots of other kids who played spiders on a lonely island, crew members, ballet dancers etc etc…

it was work of complete professionals!!!

play was followed by a wrap up dinner hosted by the organisers, in the park, chennai. the place is good, especially their leather lounge… well the dinner was in a hall next to it.we made quite a few new friends, food was tasty and not heavy on the stomach.

 

its like one of the socialising evenings, where you get to see some genuinely good talent and meet quality people amongst affectionate hosts. 

 

 

 

 

 

jazz evening

as i walked out of the car in noisy traffic for office, he said he had passes for a jazz show, before waving good day…

unusually for us, at 5 in the evening we decided to leave work in an hour… and reach the place before 7… and really unusually for us, we actually managed to do that!

it was steve smith and his vital information group comprising tom coster (of santana fame), vinny valentino and baron browne.

we were already excited due to the celebrity names and the fact that we would be able to interact with them as it was a small auditorium, and some decent jazz loving crowd.

as the auditorium slowly filled up and they closed the lights, all the four musicians, walked in assumingly, and just picked up their respective instruments and just started playing… almost instantly…

for the uninformed, jazz is a type of music which is free flowing. in a jazz group, any of the musicians, sometimes piano, sometimes guitar sometimes drums, take the lead one by one…. when one takes lead  and plays his piece, others accompany him and provide supportive/background music.

steve, who plays the drums, is just god when he does it… everyone in the auditorium actually just gaped at him, and we gave him a standing ovation too… i mean with that kind of energy, coordinating both hands and legs (which is really difficult as while playing drums each of the four has to do different tasks) and his blend of drums with carnatic classical notes was nothing less than fantabulous !!!

vinny who played guitar, wore a chirpy smile and did some sweeter pieces. tom who was on sysnthesizer did a santana number, ‘europa’.. 

each of them had their different identity and still they were coordinated perfectly…

 

after the show… we got to exchange greetings and got dvds with autographs personally signed for us…

 

some information on vital information picked up from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vital_Information    

 

vital information was formed by steve smith in 1983 with friends tim landers, dave wilczewski, dean brown, and mike stern. years later and after several personnel changes, vital information has become a formidable fusion juggernaut whose longevity surpasses the zawinul syndicate, tribal tech and even weather report.

the current all-star lineup of tom coster (keyboards), vinny valentino (guitar), baron browne (bass) and steve smith (drums) serve up a veritable banquet of sounds, from slamming funk and syncopated second line grooves to seriously swinging, uptempo b-3 burners, south indian carnatic inspired jams and sizzling fuzoid romps. vital information continues to hone its “u.s. music” direction while staking out some adventurous new territory..

..and of course you have.. http://www.vitalinformation.com/

                                                           

                                                  

resort in chennai : MGM resorts

this one is on the ecr highway, a huge resort, professionally and aesthetically maintained… beautiful ponds, bridges, photography worthy…

their beach (ie. their part of the beach) is the best one in chennai… serene, clear, and some beach sports on…

we had the pleasure of sipping tea here on the beach, their café with wooden tables and chairs is extended right upto the shore…

lime juice didn’t have lime, but tea was good, and actually we know that they dont have good food here… we’ve been here for the third time i guess….

you order one dish… then you cant order anything after that…  anyways as they get too late also 🙂

recommended : please visit whenever you are on the ecr highway, you’ll like the resort enuf to pardon them for the food part… 

food in chennai : moonrakers

in mahabalipuram, this is a sea food lover’s place… it smells fish from a distance !

quiet neighbourhood… and that ‘goa-like’ feel… typical traditional indian brocade ware stores around… few other restaurants of the same like…namely, ‘blue elephant’ etc… quite some ‘phirangs’ having a good time… etc etc… i took some time to get used to the ‘fragrance’, as i am a vegetarian by choice (i have realized that saying i am a vegetarian by birth and strictly stood by it so far, is not a very proud thing to be)… once i was one if it.. i liked its ambience, it has its own li’ll attitude, in its own li’ll world… that’s like…’i don’t care about whats going on elsewhere’… they have stone interiors, wooden staircase, poorly maintained, yet that’s why its unique.. on the top floor, we luckily managed to find a place close to the wooden balcony like railing… cool breeze, no sun, it was a gentle soothing feeling… had ordered for fish fry and paneer tikka… i bet they make some of the most amazing paneer tikkas i’ve had, albeit garlic used was a li’ll more, recommended : if you go to mahabalipuram, it is a good idea to stop over here… 

shopping : marks and spencers

i make opinions quickly. sometimes, i think so.

i always felt that marks and spencers was one overly priced brand, and there was no point buying those basic tees for 1500 bucks etc..

was there just yesterday (don’t remember the last time i went to a m&s)… i managed to shop for some really affordable and great stuff, some of the ‘most useful’ things i have ‘ever’ bought…  some women always dress in three basic colours, white, black and red… after all they have thought something about it 🙂 right ?