Living in a multicultural city like Toronto, my high school days were spent becoming acquainted with Indian music, food and cinema.
At school I shared a locker with a friend who was really into Bollywood. As a result, the place was plastered in photos of Indian actors, dancers and singers. I must admit I wasn’t very impressed at first – you know, being greeted by Bollywood’s smiling faces every morning, but it eventually grew on me and it wasn’t long before I too learned their names. Namely, Shahrukh Khan – King Khan – The King of Bollywood.
I still remember the first Indian movie I watched at a birthday party while eating samosas – I could not take my eyes off the screen! Perfectly choreographed dance moves, sarees in every colour under the rainbow, gold bangles and nose rings, and dance scenes that jumped across continents without any explanation. It was fascinating!
Last summer I went to India for the first time, and it so happened that my last day in Mumbai was spent in the suburb of Bandra. Now you’re probably thinking, the suburbs? Really, what can suburbia have to offer? Well, Bandra happens to be home to the rich and famous, and that can only mean one thing – Bollywood stars! And of course, my gracious hosts for the day were more than willing to drive around, pointing out the actors’ homes. (Note: These homes are hard to miss as the majority have clusters of fans waiting by the gates, hoping to catch a glimpse of their idol!)
And behold there it was – ‘Mannat’, home to the King of Bollywood.
I practically leapt out of the car, camera in tow. My friends back home would never believe this without proof! Giddy with excitement I pointed and posed while the nearby guards stared, probably wondering what this foreigner knew about Shahrukh Khan.I even pressed my nose against the gates hoping to get a peek… Yeah, I really played it real cool that day.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see Mr. Khan on that occasion, but I hear he has a home at the Palm Jumeira in Dubai, so he may just get another visit if I ever swing by the UAE.