30 May, 2010

My summer in Delhi

I have been meaning to write somethings for quite some time now but the weather in Delhi has just been so horrible that I have no energy left for anything creative. Going to Italy and France for 2 weeks made it even worse since the weather there was just perfect for me. Getting back to Delhi in the peak of its summer is not the wisest thing to do but home is home and there is no place like home. Had a wonderful time in Italy sharing Saskia's and my music with the wonderful audience there. We were performing in Cabella, a small village about 2hrs from Milan for the Sahaja Yoga Centre, devotees of Mata Nirmala Devi ji. I have had a wonderful relationship with many of them for over 15yrs now since my first concert for her in Berlin in 1994. I love the respect and love they have for our music and our culture and it is always a special feeling for me to play for them.

We rented a car from Milan airport and drove down to Saskia's parents in the south of France. Wow!! What a beautiful journey--through the French Alps and seeing some of the most beautiful sights of the world. Who can ever ask for anything better in life?!!! My music takes me to such beautiful places all over the world and to be able to share it with my 2 loves, my wife and my son, is indeed something that I could not even dream of. We spent 10 lovely days with Saskia's parents in what I call "paradise". All the creative games that Ishaan plays with his grandmother is triggering his imagination. To see him play with his grand father is always very beautiful. I miss the fact that Ishaan never got to meet his other grand father, my father, who I am sure would have loved him to pieces. My father passed away a few months before Ishaan entered this world and after having seen his relationship with my nieces and nephew and the beautiful bond they shared, I always wanted my child to build the same bond with his grand father. But I am sure that wherever he is today, he is looking down at Ishaan with a lot of love. Both Saskia and me attach a lot of importance to our families and it is wonderful to see Ishaan so comfortable in both the cultures and both families. Another beautiful thing to see was Ishaan's relationship with the dog there, Ursa. Ursa is a French Bria rd and one of the most gentle dogs that I have ever come across. For her to withstand the growth of 5 grandchildren who all adore her without any sort of anger is something admirable. If she gets annoyed by anything, she just walks away from the scene and comes back a couple of minutes later. Such control is what we all human beings should also develop. Is'nt this what meditation is all about? To control your emotions, not to show or express anger or other negative characters?

I also got to spend a couple of days with my brother in Geneva and enjoyed some great food with him. Bisibelebath with all the wonderful side dishes, Biryani--the way I like it--hot and spicy.

Since we were flying Emirates, we had to drive back to Milan to catch our flight. The journey back, we chose a different route. Drove through more exotic places like Nice, Cannes, Monaco, along the Mediterranean Sea. The international festival was on in Cannes but we decided not to enter the city and get caught in any traffic. I have to say that the Emirates is one of the best airlines I have flown. Wonderful and helpful staff, both at the airports and in the flights. The best thing was the way they looked after Ishaan. One of the gifts he got, a puppet called Pedro, the Parrot and Rani, the Tiger have become his favorite toys now. Saskia does an amazing interpretation of Pedro and Rani and its wonderful to see how much Ishaan learns through them. Saskia has almost created an "alter ego" for herself since she can say anything she wants as Pedro(the naughty one while Rani is the goody goody one). I do have some beautiful videos but she will kill me if I ever share it with you on YouTube!!! She hates it that I record all these videos but I am sure she will thank me when we both get older and only have memories of Ishaan's childhood to keep us occupied. The minute we stepped out of the airport in Delhi and the hot air hit us, I just wanted to run back and catch the next flight back!!

Well---I started writing with the intention of writing something different but have ended up writing something else completely. But that's what happens when I plan things out rather than be impulsive. So is the case with my music--when I plan something and work meticulously, sometimes they do not work out as well as I thought they would. But when I go with the flow of music and let the music dictate me, the feeling of joy inside me is something extraordinary. There are many times when this flow brings tears to my eyes even as I am performing. This feeling of joy to be totally one with the music is what I aspire for. I do not know when or what creates this feeling and what triggers it but whenever it does happen, it's sheer bliss that nothing else can give. Only the joy I get from seeing Ishaan is closest to this.

I do hope to be more regular with my writings since I do enjoy sharing my thoughts and experiences through this medium. Have a great time in whatever you are doing.