Ensconced in the modern, luxurious environs of the Shangrila Hotel, this venue is almost a nostalgic throwback to the bars of the 40s and 50s, with a lovely modern twist. From the repertoire of live music to the atmosphere, it is warm, retro and relaxing. I’ve been a number of times to the bar and admit, i have had a varied gamut of experiences.
They had a good/ wide selection of wines available (which is a bit of a rarity even at the better bars around town). And they served it beautifully with a decanter and the works. I’m a bit persnickety about how the wine is stored and how it is served since it makes all the difference in flavour preservation. Good storage ensures the sulphites in the wine don’t ferment and “vinegarize” the wine. Good pouring service, with a decanter or an aerater ensures that the wine breathes as much as possible from a newly opened bottle, for the flavours to really come to the fore.
This endearingly sensationalist lot also believes in pithy, public declarations of the meaning and gist of their lives, emblazoned as they are on their carriages. There’s a sweet, almost nostalgic obsession with certain historical personages and quaint adaptations of favored English idioms: Like Che Guevara who always wants the tuk tuk contingent to rebel; Bob Marley who would like them to forget their woes in most likely, a moonshine-steeped, reggae rocked weekend. Then there is the tuk tuk driver throwing out a barefaced challenge that “if you’re bad, he’s your dad”; or the one who’s had it with arrogance saying “fly not high so you fall not low”; or the myriad others who loudly declare that their hearts are up (on their tuk tuk behinds) for the taking, and as many more who have publicly closed themselves to love… certain lady passengers always being an exception!
As the pandemic marches on, this is more true than ever. I have felt impelled to write this piece mostly because we have all now, as a planet, lived through almost 8 months of the Covid-19 blight. All 7 billion lives have, in some measure, been affected, afflicted or completely upended. And the sobering truthContinue reading “OPINION|THE BIG BANG OF SMALL KINDNESSES”
I sit here, encircled in my routine,My safety net spread around me like a bright yellow blanket.The sameness, the everydayness keeping it close, gently embracing.I’ve gulped down the first half of my mug of coffeeSo now I’m surrounded also, by a warm cloak of caffeine.I stretch inwardly with the languid requiescence of a just-fed, just-lovedContinue reading “VERSE| CARPE DIEM”
Some background to this piece is essential i feel, to give it that bit of relatable relevance. Felicia’s character is based on an old family friend in Sri Lanka who is as lovely as she is absolutely, delightfully eccentric. Donald Rajapakse is a more sinister inspiration, based on the character of a man whom iContinue reading “FICTION|A TWILIGHT IN SERENDIB”
Another day breaks on Paradise island,Little glimmers of it coming through the gap at the top of the curtain railThat was a structural detail i hadn’t intended to but, quite presciently, overlooked when i was putting up my blackout drapes.Still in bed, from the play of light and shadow on my wall,i know whether it’sContinue reading “VERSE|PARADISE EARTH”
COLOMBO; SRI LANKA: September 21st, 2021; 10pm: I breathed in deeply. I had to reduce my heart rate, get rid of all the disquieting thoughts ricocheting in my head and get my Calm back. I closed my eyes and focused on my chakras….each one visible, glowing, holding me safe…. There was a loud clamour fromContinue reading “FICTION| SOILENT GREEN* – Part 1”
I have waxed eloquent as far as Pandemic Diaries go, on the thrills and the gloom of being “benignly incarcerated”. This piece will dive into the nuts and bolts of the experience as I try and capture a typical curfew-bound day in the muculant environs of the Colombo lockdown. It all starts at around 9.30amContinue reading “PANDEMIC 2020|Positivum Cogitandi*”
(When the Food Chain upends – The age of fastidiousness, curfews and microscopic annihilators) The current high stress, painfully limiting, curfew-constrained environment has been a fitting test for how well the Super luxurious developments in the city have responded to the basic needs of their residents – like the politico with the 100 watt smileContinue reading “OPINION|The Myth of Super-Luxury Condominiums – Part Deux”