Although I feel greatly complimented by much of what is said in the email I received from Saudi Arabia, some of the contents troubled me greatly.
Like other Cathedralites hooked on to your blog, I too have become an avid reader because it not only revives good old memories but also enables me to remember some names which had virtually been erased from my memory banks!
In your blog entry of March 25 about Marine Drive and Churchgate being populated by several Cathedralites, there are some names you had left out. The late Jaswant Ghatge, who happened to be a dear friend of mine, also lived in Chateau Marine. The Mistri brothers (Pheroze and Adi) lived in Krishna Mahal (corner of D Road) while I lived on the ground floor.
Incidentally, like Jaffer Hussain living with his aunt, the late Nargis, I was living with my cousin, Suraiya who died in 2004 and also happened to be a famous filmstar of her time. (JM: I had a feeling that Suraiya had a flat near the end of where Warden Road and Peddar Road met at the Mahalaxmi Race Course end! Wish I could remember the name of the building as my uncle used to live in that flat. I remember seeing Suraiya there several times.)
Unfortunately I left Bombay to immigrate to Pakistan in early 1961 and went into oblivion only to resurface after the death of my cousin Suraiya for settlement of property matters!
I began the search of my long lost classmates and friends and succeeded to some extent - thanks to you, without whom it couldn’t have been possible.
After several attempts to gain a visa for India, I’m still struggling to get one.
An official request was put forward through my Company here in Saudi Arabia to provide me a visa to recruit engineers from Bombay.
Guess what the Visa Officer had to say! “We cannot issue visa to a Pakistani going to India for recruitment!”
I just can’t believe its happening to me.
Perhaps having a Bangladeshi citizenship might have fetched me an Indian visa!
Say hi to Annikki for me.
The names I left out were not any deliberate plot - but just because they were the "limits" of my grey matter when I wrote the piece. It is the interaction with people like Sheikh that caused my brain to also recall what was said. So, this nostalgia business is a two-way street!
Sheikh, I cannot understand in today's world how any consular official of any country can behave in such a mannner.