Monday, February 16, 2015

The Mahindra Blues Festival 2015

It was an absolutely brilliant festival and Buddy Guy was amazing. It's hard to believe this man is 78 when you see him perform. Known as the "bridge" between blues and rock, he had a profound influence on Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, to name just a few.

Buddy Guy was performing with Quinn Sullivan, a young man who has been playing guitar since he was 3 (and he is only 15 now!). He was discovered by Buddy Guy when he was 8 and invited on stage to perform with him at a concert. 

Such a great evening.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Nashik - one of India's holiest cities

Nashik is around 170 Kms from Mumbai and is one of India's holiest cities. It has hundreds of ancient temples and is one of the 4 places in the world that hosts the Kumbh Mela.  This is a mass Hindu pilgrimage in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred river.  It is the largest single peaceful gathering in the world, with around 100 million people making the pilgrimage.  It is held once every 3 years and rotates around 4 cities in India (so it is held in Nashik once every 12 years).

Nashik is also mentioned in Hindu mythology as the place where Lord Rama lived during his 14 years in exile.  The city is the site of more than 100 ancient temples.  

Nashik got its name from another Hindu myth.  Lakshmana cut off the nose of Supanakha, and the word "nasika" in Sanskrit means nose.  Nashik is also mentioned in the Ramayana as it's the site of the Sita Gumpha caves, from where Sita, Lord Rama's wife, was abducted by Ravana.   I went into the caves and had to crawl through a tiny hole and down some steps.  It was a very tight fit!

Sunday, February 8, 2015


This weekend a group of us went to Nashik to the SulaFest.  This is a wine and music festival held at the Sula Vineyards, about 170 kms away from Mumbai.  We drove up after school on Friday, and came back on Sunday evening, which was a perfect timing for a weekend getaway.

We stayed in an AirB&B homestay.  The place was run by a couple who had an organic farm outside of Nashik and it was nicely decorated with recycled materials.  The photo below shows a group of us up on the roof terrace.

There was plenty to do at the SulaFest.  There was the opportunity to do wine tasting, to try different foods, to sit and lounge in the sun and watch various bands.  Top of the list was Indie Rock band Young the Giant, but probably one of my favourite bands was Yes Sir Boss from the UK.

On both the Saturday and Sunday mornings before going to the festival we spent time in Nashik - there was lots of see.  I especially enjoyed the drive - we passed some amazing scenery (and also 3 horrific crashes where lorries had come off the road and were crashed in the side).  The road was good but obviously people were not driving carefully.