Asha Parekh at her flat on
Sunday, Dec. 16, 07
(c) Copyright, Wafaa' Al-Natheema
Today, one year ago, I left Mulund West area of Mumbai in the morning and moved to the Sea Side Hotel, which is in the same vicinity of Sun & Sand Hotel in the Juhu area. This way I would be closer to Asha Parekh's flat, the Arabian Sea, the Prithvi Theater and the airport as I was scheduled to depart on Monday December 17.
After I arrived at the hotel, I had a quick breakfast, packed my two cameras and rushed to get a three-wheeler taxi forgetting to take my gifts to Asha. I was so eager to arrive on time that I forgot to take the gifts I intended to give Asha. I realized I forgot them at the time when I entered her flat after having gone through a dramatic scene with a stranger, who decided to ride with me voluntarily in the taxi expecting money at the end. At one point when the driver didn't know the way to Asha's flat and stopped to ask people in the street, I realized what the stranger was up to and I requested in front of the police officer that he exit the car. That is when I got a call from Asha inquiring about my arrival time. I gave the phone to the policeman to take directions from Asha and instruct the cab driver, which was very helpful.
On that day, I was very tired physically, so with inconvenience of moving in the same morning and after experiencing this dramatic incident with the stranger and the police, I arrived at her flat feeling somewhat shaky and distracted. Despite that, my interview with Asha Parekh was wonderful. Because of the quiet environment and of the availability of electric plugs in convenient places, I was able to use two cameras and have a good quality voice.
After we completed the interview, I took few editing shots including of the beautiful views from her balcony. She then offered delicious snacks and tea, but because she was heading out, I rushed out again forgetting to take still pictures of her and to ask her driver, as she suggested, to take me to the hospital, which has a section named after her. Even though I apologized about forgetting the gifts and promised to give them to the driver who dropped me at the hotel, I was upset at myself.
As I indicated in earlier postings that I intend to produce a documentary film about Asha Parekh and Shammi Kapoor, which I have been working on for the last three weeks and plan to release in the fall of 2009. My trip to London and Germany in November (2008) delayed the editing.
Asha's flat was beautiful. She looked wonderful. Her eyes, bright smile and intelligent personality are her great features. Elegance was her attire!
An hour after I returned to my hotel, I met with Kala Ramnath, a professional violinist at the Sun and Sand Hotel, which was next door to my hotel. The meeting was brief and we took several pictures at the end.