Night out at Naukuchiataal
This sleepy lake-town of Uttarakhand will be hosting some of the most exciting action next weekend. It will be spread over two properties by the Naukuchiataal lake.
Meet the North East Express (blues meets classic rock) and The Warsis (sufi qawaalis), Shillong-based Soulmate (Blues), Sajid and the Lost Boys ('ambient folk') on the menu.
Stand-up comic Rajneesh Kapoor is likely to perform on both days of the fest that's been put together by the Happily Unmarried gang and Parikrama Inc. Book early.
Event on July 23rd-24
For details, call 98102 96994
America on the plate
July 4 is the American Independence Day. If you want to catch the tail-end of the festivities, we have a plan. But first things first. What are our favourite things out of America? I would say it's William Faulkner's novels and the films of Martin Scorcese and Woody Allen. Fish chowder and blueberry cheesecake could be close seconds.
If you're in the mood for an American experience in food, stop by at Pepper, a cool hideout off Akbar Bhawan in Chanakyapuri. It has comfort eating, which basically means that what you get here is a taste of food that you may well have made at home but chose not to. "Indian food is flavoursome. Most American eateries think flavour comes from wrapping things in bacon. They grill every damn thing. Not this one," said a happy customer. "Pepper customises food. We like tenderloin but not in such huge portions. We have ours in a burger."
For a full American cultural experience, combine the next two events if you wish. Attend the book reading of Huckleberry Finn but with your mind open.
One of the most enduring images of escape and freedom in American literature, its depiction of blacks is stereotypical. Next, catch the photography exhibition, 'America in my Camera', by Anand Ishwarappa Murgod, an Indian who documented his impression of the US during his visit.
Venue:Pepper, Chanakyapuri, American Independence Day food festival till August 10, ph: 26878320; 'America in My Camera', on till July 30 and book reading of 'Huckleberry Finn', July 24, 10 am, American Center, tel: 23472289
Life of plastic not fantastic
The concept of identity is a recyclable one. Or, so believes Pakistani installation artist Khalil Chishtee. In Delhi with his recent offering, his figures, created primarily out of recycled shopping bags, depict various aspects of the human condition.
The use of plastic bags lends a certain sense of fluidity to the figures, which, in a way, hint at man's inability to change the course of his existence. The installation, Ladder, is a case in point.
For Chishtee, it is a symbol for communication between heaven and earth and also a tool for pointing to a sad fact of human existence — the tendency to use another human being as a stepping stone.
But why the use of plastic? "We live in the age of plastic. From computers, to cell phones, it all involves the same material," he says.
Venue: Recycled identities, Select CityWalk Mall, Saket, 29th July - 12th August, 7 to 9:30 pm. Tel: 9811239932
Rent a bike, Goa-style
Freedom on wheels, that's their motto. Forget about haggling with the autowallahs and finding the right bus routes, uRide, a premium scooter rental agency, is here to solve your travelling woes.
At Rs 200 a day, you rent a gearless Honda Activa which comes with complimentary helmets and maps so that you may explore the city at your own pace.
A three-month old start-up, this rental agency is the brainchild of three friends who were tired of listening to their friends and their ordeal of going through Delhi's traffic.
"That's when we realised that we should go the Goa way. We invested Rs 10 lakh as the initial capital and bought these user-friendly bikes," says Anand Bhaskar Rao, one of the partners at uRide.
"The response has been fantastic, from both the expats and tourists and also those Delhiites who want to discover the city on their own."
Contact uRide at 98713 07363 or 98111 04044 for daily (Rs 200), weekly (Rs 1200) and monthly (Rs 4500) rentals.