India was rocking hai! I’m back & I saw many balloons.


india0809-5151india0809-004Sat Sri Akal! I’ve returned from my whirlwind trip to India. It was my best trip ever and I’ll be posting about it more in the future and post photos on picaweb soon and provide the link if you’re interested. Imagine my delight when I boarded the plane and heard the man in the next row saying things like Iowa, professor, Hindi. Like a stalker I said, “Hey, are you Philip of Philip’s Fil-ums?!” india0809-2361Well of course it was him, since real life mimics Bollywood and is full of coincidences. Professor Lutgendorf kindly tolerated my many questions and it was a treat to speak with him. I’ve included a photo of us on the plane in Delhi. And to add a perfect ending to my trip, I arrived home to see that generous Beth Loves Bollywood had sent me a movie in the mail! So you can see that Bollywood bloggers started and ended my trip. I was able to attend a wedding, or as the Indians say, a function in Ludhiana. In addition to the marvelous array of wedding functions, I saw the Golden Temple in Amritsar (and drank the holy H2O), the Taj Mahal, the Red Fort in Agra, Fatepur Sikri (Hrihik and Aish’s pad in Jodhaa Akbar dude!) and Sikandra. I ate great food and was treated like a rani. Thanks India! Here’s a little visual proof of my visit:

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india0809-234That was the M. S.  Anand Band of Lahore’s rendition of Aaje Nachle, complete with a Balloon Walla in the background. Now if you’d like to hear something very beautiful, click HERE, HERE, and HERE to listen to one of Ludhiana’s most famous citizens, the late Ishmeet Singh on Star Voice of India.

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21 thoughts on “India was rocking hai! I’m back & I saw many balloons.

  1. OMG YOU MET PROF. LUTGENDORF!!

    If I met him, I would have to pull a Wayne’s World: down on my knees and worshipping, “WE’RE NOT WORTHY! WE’RE NOT WORTHY!” He’s like the rock star of Bollywood film reviewing!

    What a filmi coincidence indeed!

  2. the post-punk cinema club-ji,
    I know! Can you believe it!? I was actually sitting right across the aisle from him, but changed my seat so some lame Himilayas lovin’ father and son could sit together. I say lame since they didn’t even talk, so what’s the point hai? They were adults too, and gora, so it wasn’t like I was respecting some Indian family culture to change my seat. Rascals! But it’s for the best I moved since I would have completely harassed the professor. I did keep going over and saying stuff like, “Hey I thought of another thing…” I told him it was like a super slumber party in the sky. At one point he was wearing a sleep mask. I had the good sense to not go and peel if off his face though. Even I have my limits. He was very kind and helpful and gave me his number that he’d have during his stay in India in case I needed anything. I did not call it…”Hey professor! I know it’s late, but you know how in Seeta Aur Geeta when she’s on that ceiling fan? Well I was thinking that most fans wouldn’t support the weight of an adult and…” He said he likes the ayurvedic toothpastes and I think also the sandalwood soaps of India. Don’t I sound like a stalker? :D

  3. LOL, you are hilarious…how completely filmi fabulous! I’m so glad you liked it and had a good time.

    Maybe next time we can go to Bombay together and stalk real film stars!

  4. Welcome back! Tell me, did you come across “Thank God” brand products? I have a tube of Anytime Cream that someone brought me from India, and it’s a treasured presence in my medicine cabinet. Check it out: http://www.bestonhealth.com/bohproduct/pileskit/pi-cream.htm

    Designed for “piles management” — hemorrhoid relief, as we Americans say — ThankGod brand Anytime Cream contains trusted Indian herbal ingredients. I haven’t needed it, Thank God, but the tube in my possession is a source of comfort, and I would kill for a t-shirt or coffee mug. Hey, maybe one of your readers is a sales rep for the company. If so, holler back! In the meantime, Sitaji and friends, learn more at the website; the brand identity is simple, clear and reassuring. I know you’ll want a tube of your own!

  5. Brahmanandam – I love your comments. Please comment more. This had me laughing so hard, and trying to keep quiet in an open plan office, I think I may need some Thank God relief cream myself.

    Sitaji – OMG can we start a Prof. Lutgendorf fan club?!

  6. you met the Phillip!!!
    And its gr8 to see a pic of u at last!
    and I hope u had a brilliant time!

    [have.to.stop. with. the. exclamations. already]

    I hope our visits can coincide one day!

  7. Glad you had a great trip sitaji! I guess as they say your wonderful journey began with a sign of good luck ie finding Prof Phillip on the onward flight

    Looking forward to reading about your experiences – sights, food, people etc.

    Welcome back

  8. Sitaji,

    Your stalker activities sound like so much fun. Am glad you had a gala time in India. Next time, please to visit the west of the country, apna Bollywood ka area.

  9. Echoing PPCC – OMG Prof “Philip’s Fil-ums” Lutgendorf. What a Bollywoodian co-incidence. And glad to know you had a great trip. Did you see the “Bakshi Villa” (Aish’s pad in Bride And Prejudice) in Amritsar? And the lovely building that doubled as Pakistani Supreme Court in Veer Zara? Amritsar seems to have more filmi landmarks than even Mumbai!

  10. Memsaab,
    To stalk stars together in Bombay would be a dream!

    Stella_1,
    Thanks! I agree, what a fun thing to see the prof.

    Brahmanandam,
    I appreciate the information and will look into it.

    The post-punk cinema club,
    A fan club is an excellent idea. Looks like there are enough commenters here to have a solid base for the club. :) I found the earnest picture of SRK doing a “Golden Temple +SRK” search, having been inspired by just being at the Golden Temple last week. I knew SRK did some shooting there for Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, so I figured I’d find something good. Here’s the link of SRK getting his Sikh on: http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/0dEE0bg1yd4gW/610x.jpg
    I also had the same expressions while there, very earnest.

    shweta!
    Thanks! And don’t stop the exclamations! I use over use them all the time! If you stop using them then I’ll be all alone! :D

    Anonymous,
    Thanks for the visit and comment. I know, what luck!

    Banno,
    Shukriya. And yes, next trip I will make it to Bollywood. I wasn’t ready for that and first needed to be released into the Punjab, just to be safe.

    bollyviewer,
    I know, we’re all so happy about the philip’s Filums coincidence. I will have to send him a link to this so he knows how many fans he has. And sadly no I did no see “Bakshi Villa” nor the faux court building from Veer Zaara, in which Rani really proved herself to her dad by being a great lawyer, and where Veer proved his love for Zaara! Had I known I would have hunted these film landmarks down.

  11. Philip’s Fil-ums was the first Bollywood film reviews website I had come across before any other, so… :-O Whoa. Spooky. It’s too much of a coincidence that you unexpectedly shared a flight with a fellow online Bollywood reviewer who you actually know. I think someone’s watching you! :-S

    Wow! The first picture looks like a screencap! I can’t wait to see the rest of you photos.

  12. FiLMiNDiA,
    I know, that was a super fun coincidence right from the start which I choose to see as an auspicious sign for a good trip, which of course it was. The first image in the post that you speak of I took from a grimy train window, somewhere in Punjab between Ludhiana and Delhi. I was very impressed at the lovely countryside views from the train. I’ll post those pix and a link soon. I have several more from the train that I liked more that that one I posted. Thanks for your visit. :)

  13. Richard,
    Pran is a good reference, but I choose to think of you as the “Amar Akbar Anthony” Pran, who is lugging around a case of GOLD! Yes, he does some time in prison, and is unfairly treated, but in the end it all works out. And if it’s of any consolation, there really isn’t a lot of toilet paper in India, so for that alone you can be glad that you were here in the U.S.. :)

    the post-punk cinema club,
    With you I scream Praaaaaaaaaan! I love him. Remember what a professional A hole he was in Brahmachari? Glad you like the SRK pic. I haven’t seen Rab Ne yet, and maybe that’s a good thing from what I’ve read. He does look hot though showing respect to the gurus and gurdwara though as evidenced in that photo.

  14. I’m in Bombay right now – we were out on Friday night and bought all the balloons off a cute kid that had fallen asleep outside the pub. I have a great balloon I want to show you but don’t know how / if I can post pictures in comments?

  15. That all sounds great! I look forward to reading all about your journey. And nice to see the photo of you. I shall have to look up Philip’s Fil-ums now as I hadn’t heard of him before.

  16. I’m jealous! Looks like you had an amazing time. and that is such a tremendous coincidence, meeting Philip on the way there… fabulous. Your pictures are beautiful.

  17. summer,
    Thanks for your visit and for supporting the balloon walla industry. I would love to post the picture, but I don’t know if it will show up in a comment. I’ll respond to you via email, and then you can send it to me there and I’ll do a post on it, since I do have some additional balloon walla pix that I would like to post too. Thanks!

    Joss,
    Thank you! Yes you will enjoy Philip’s posting a lot.

    DG,
    Yes, since you’ve tasted the amrit of India, you know to be jealous friend. :) It was a great coincidence that Philip’sfil-ums was on the plane. Now I know you are jealous of the trip, but let me tell you something that may push you over the edge: The town I spent most of my time in while there was Ludhiana. Who was born there DG? Yes, your very or Dharmendra. I was swimming in his cellular memory while there.

    Everyone, check out DG’s tales of her trip to India here:

    http://ilovelovelovedharmendra.blogspot.com/2007/12/india-bollywood-related-stuff-part-ii.html

    http://ilovelovelovedharmendra.blogspot.com/2007/12/india-bollywood-related-stuff.html

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