Hyderabad Diaries – Chapter 3

Where I am floored by a Roman artist and a genius from Kerala

I think I have not been exposed to museums enough. I was not particularly keen on visiting Salarjung when we went checking the city out. However, fifteen minutes inside that white castle-like building and I was mesmerized by sculptures from the first and second century. Most of these were statues of Jain, Buddhist, and Hindu deities dating back to Pallava and Chola periods. I also loved the children’s section that has a wide array of toys and puppets. Another interesting gallery was that of guns, daggers, shields, and swords belonging to Mughal emperors like Aurangazeb, Tippu Sultan, and Mohammad Shah. Nevertheless, I only had time and energy to explore the first of the three levels of the museum.

Two pieces that impressed me the most were Veiled Rebecca and Stolen Interview. Let me tell you that the pictures of those that I found on the Internet do not do any justice to the real pieces.

Veiled Rebecca is work of the Roman artist Giovanni Maria Benzoni. Rebecca was wife of Isaac. In this sculpture, she draws a transparent veil on self before meeting her future husband. What struck me about this sculpture was its precision and elegance. You have to look at the real piece to appreciate the neatness with which the artist has sculpted the folds of the transparent veil that covers the woman from head to toe.

Stolen Interview, known as Romancing Couple on the Internet from some reason, is a painting by the famous painter of Kerala – Raja Ravi Verma. The original painting is colored, unlike the picture seen here. He is popular for his depiction of female beauty. And after seeing this painting I know why. The woman in the painting charms you. The expressions on her face, her facial features, and her body language… you just cannot take your eyes off her. I am told that one can find a huge collection of Ravi Verma’s work in the Art Gallery of Mysore.

Where I realize that people in Hyderabad do not walk much

I went for this micro-mini LJ meet yesterday. Met and for lunch at 10 Downing Street. Post lunch we decided to visit a bookstore, not more than a kilometer away. Navina and I decided to walk down instead of taking an auto. During this seven – eight minutes walk, different auto drivers stopped by our side to check if we needed their services; not once, not twice, but nine times. (Yes, we counted!)

Two women walking down the road at 3:20 in the afternoon is not a common sight in this city, is it?

On a different note, these nice people from Hyderabad have offered to take me to all the cool bookstores in the city. All you treasure boxes that talks about on his journal, here I come!

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Where I discover the source of inspiration for Telugu movies’ choreogrpahers

While I ate my dinner at the office cafeteria last night, I entertained myself by watching some Telugu movie on Gemini. The hero (some real popular dude, I think) saves the girl from being slaughtered on a train by the baddies. Next, a dream sequence where the hero, dressed in all black, breaks into a dance sequence on the roof of a moving train with a supposedly sexy woman in red lehenga for company. The jhatkas matkas of this woman will definitely put Malika Arora to shame.

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