A brief visit to “Probably Paradise Shelter” in Karjat .

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Mrs Roxanne.Davur in the main foyer of “Probably Paradise Shelter”.

Thanks to “FACEBOOK” got to read about “Probably Paradise Shelter” and Ms Roxanne .Davur who owns and manages this shelter and hence decided to visit the same before the onset of the Monsoons.

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A view of the open grounds of “Probably Paradise Shelter”. This donkey instantly became my friend .

On Monday(10/6/2019) rode 80 Kms on my “Bullet 350” from my residence in Prabhadevi to Takwe village in Karjat to visit the “PROBABLY PARADISE SHELTER” owned and managed by Ms Roxanne.Davur. Reached the shelter at 0930 hrs greeted by the loud barking of dog’s at the entrance gate.Ms Roxanne.Davur is a elderly Parsi lady who has now devoted her life to maintaining a shelter for destitute and abandoned animals on her 1.5 acres land in Takwe village of Karjat.

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A view of a part of the palatial 1.5 acre fenced “PROBABLY PARADISE SHELTER” in Takwe village of Karjat.

She had a successful career in the airlines and hotel Industry and trained as a master trainer in animal welfare in Delhi later working in Ooty as a “Animal Welfare Inspector” and a “Racecourse Inspector” at the Ooty Racecourse.

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Roxanne Davur with her cats inside the “Cattery Lodging” where over a 100 cats reside. Amazing.

 

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The visitor/narrator at the “Probably Paradise Shelter” .A few of the 100 + cats were all over me and Ms Roxanne Davur and never before in my life i had these many cats wanting my affection and pampering. At home i have two Traditional Persian cats and have owned pets since childhood previously owning dogs.

She started this shelter in Takwe village of Karjat in December 2012 and is helped by the locals of Takwe village in daily maintenance of this sprawling complex which costs Rs 6 lakhs/month in maintenance alone.

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A view of the recent addition of a “Dog Kennel” on the 1.5 acre “Probably Paradise Shelter” estate.

I was the only visitor early in the morning and she explained me the basic layout and management of this private amazing animal shelter where discarded pets and street casualty animals can live the rest of their lives in this Paradise for animals.

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Roxanne having a cup of tea in the company of her beloved non-human companions.

In human terms i would compare it to a “Old Age Home” for pet’s and abandoned domesticated animals.We humans have a tendency to treat pets as commodities that can be abandoned and tragically most abandoned pets die miserable deaths as they cannot survive on the streets or wild akin to feral dogs or cats .

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This dog would have not survived a few days on the streets and here it is happy and contended in “Probably Paradise Shelter”.Its such pathetic and hopeless animal medical cases that are handled free of charge at this unique animal shelter .

Most important is that all the dog’s and cat’s get along together although the cat’s due to their vast numbers have a separate cattery enclosure.

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Roxanne administrating “Intravenous ” medication to “Ebony” the mix-breed abandoned dog that suffered a partial heart attack .

The animals at times are medicated by Ms Roxanne.Davur herself and during my short visit she administered a intravenous saline medication to “Ebony” , a abandoned mix breed that had suffered a heart attack at night .

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WHO SAYS CATS AND DOGS DON’T GET ALONG ? This particular cat doesn’t mingle along with the other 100 + cats in the “Cattery Residence” of the shelter but gets along very well with this dog. Both are kept isolated in a separate pen and enjoy each others company as can be observed in this photo.

Roxanne.Davur has led a very privileged life and lifestyle and is still in touch with the “Who’s Who” of the “Horse racing and Celebrity” world and at times donations from the wealthy do help in supporting the “Probably Paradise Shelter” that is unique in our Country where most philanthropists donate wealth only towards “Human Hospitals” or “Human Welfare”.

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Ms Roxanne Davur in her palatial “PROBABLY PARADISE SHELTER” in Takwe village of Karjat in the State of Maharashtra in India.

On Thursday( 9/2/2017) Roxanne.Davur was recognized for her charitable work towards the welfare of animals and awarded the “Yes Foundation Everyday Hero Award -2016” in the presence of  Union Minister of Railways Mr Suresh.Prabhu ,actor Abhishek.Bachchan and the founder chairman of GMR group Mr G.M .Rao.

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Made the 80 Kms motorcycle ride from Prabhadevi in Mumbai to Takwe village in Karjat and later back home to Mumbai.Here i am at Vanjarwadi (Kadav) in Karjat having overshot my location by a kilometer. On inquiring with locals finally found my way to “Probably Paradise Shelter” .The entrance to the shelter had a dirt road and was akin to riding a motorcycle “Dirt Race” also proving the durability and adaptability of my “Royal Enfield Bullet 350” .It was peak “Dry Summer” but once the Monsoon sets in this entire locality would be a carpet of natural greenery.Just 2 1/2 hrs drive from concrete jungle Mumbai is a real paradise of natural forests and farmland. Numerous resorts are being developed in the vicinity and only hope some legislation is enacted in not converting the entire “Green Belt” neighborhood of Karjat into a cluster of artificially landscaped resort and holiday villa’s.Thank’s to my visit to the “Probably Paradise Shelter” that i got a view of Karjat as a tourist.

A visit to the “Probably Paradise Shelter” in Takwe village of Karjat.

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Mrs Roxanne.Davur in the main foyer of “Probably Paradise Shelter”. The beautiful labrador was abandoned by its owner.Tragic that many pet owners abandon their pets if they have bahavioural problems or are expensive to maintain.Maintaining a “PET” is expensive requiring personal human interaction with the pet 

Since the purchase of the   Royal Enfield “Bullet 350” motorcycle in March 2016 its been a addiction of long distance motorcycle cruising  after my 11 days  2000 Kms epic riding odyssey from Mumbai to Barkur and back to Mumbai.

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A view of a part of the palatial 1.5 acre fenced “PROBABLY PARADISE SHELTER” in Takwe village of Karjat.

Thanks to “FACEBOOK” got to read about “Probably Paradise Shelter” and Ms Roxanne .Davur who owns and manages this shelter and hence decided to visit the same before the onset of the Monsoons.On Monday (10/6/2019) rode 80 Kms on my “Bullet 350” from my residence in Prabhadevi to Takwe village in Karjat to visit the “PROBABLY PARADISE SHELTER” owned and managed by Ms Roxanne.Davur.

 

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Reached the shelter at 0930 hrs greeted by the loud barking of dog’s at the entrance gate.Ms Roxanne.Davur is a elderly Parsi lady who has now devoted her life to maintaining a shelter for destitute and abandoned animals on her 1.5 acres land in Takwe village of Karjat. She had a successful career in the airlines and hotel Industry and trained as a master trainer in Delhi later working in Ooty as a “Animal Welfare Inspector” and a “Racecourse Inspector” at the Ooty Racecourse. She started this shelter in Takwe village of Karjat in December 2012 and is helped by the locals of Takwe village in daily maintenance of this sprawling complex..I was the only visitor early in the morning and she explained me the basic layout and management of this amazing private animal shelter where discarded pets and street casualty animals can live the rest of their lives in this Paradise for animals. In human terms i would compare it to a “Old Age Home” for pet’s and abandoned domesticated animals.We humans have a tendency to treat pets as commodities that can be abandoned and tragically most abandoned pets die miserable deaths as they cannot survive on the streets or wild akin to feral  dogs or cats . She showed me  the “Cattery Housing” where  over 100 cats are enclosed inside spacious “Apartments(Flats)” akin to humans living in houses.On sitting on the sofa inside the “Cattery Flat” the cats were all over me and Roxanne wanting to be petted and pampered.Besides the “Cattery enclosure ” there are pony’s , donkey’s , dog’s and a pig on the shelter premises.Most important is that all the dog’s and cat’s get along together although the cat’s due to their vast numbers have a separate cattery enclosure.She has also built a new kennel for dogs at one end of the estate .The animals at times are medicated by Ms Roxanne.Davur herself and during my short visit she administered a intravenous saline medication to “Ebony” , a abandoned mix breed that had suffered a mild  heart attack at night.The maintenance of this shelter costs Roxanne.Davur approximately Rs 6 lakhs/Month not taking into consideration  the personal devotion and emotions attached to almost every four legged animal inhabiting the shelter. On Thursday(9/2/2017) Ms Roxanne.Davur was awarded the “Yes Foundation Everyday Hero Award -2016” for her dedication to the care and welfare of animals.She was awarded a prize money of Rs 1 lakh in the presence of Union Minister of Railways Mr Suresh.Prabhu , actor Abhishek.Bachchan and founder chairman of GMR group Mr G.M.Rao. She has and still interacts  with the “Who’s Who” of the “Horse racing and Celebrity” world and during our conversation her name-dropping of icons of the  business,Political  and celebrity World was akin to my nomadic travels and extreme adventure sports across various Country’s.At times donations from wealthy patrons do help in supporting the “Probably Paradise Shelter” that is unique in our Country where most philanthropists donate wealth only towards  “Human Hospitals” or “Human Welfare”. At 1245 hrs I finally bid her and the unique “Probably Paradise shelter” goodbye  with her engrossed in giving “Ebony” the intravenous saline drip and a chance to live a normal life .

The tragic negligence of the ancestral 150 year old house of “Pai Tiatr Joao . Augustinho.Fernandes “in Modsai in Margao.

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The crumbling 150 year old Portuguese era house of the “Father of Konkani Tiatr ( Theatre) ” Joao .Augustinho.Fernandes at Modsai in Margao.

 

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A decaying “HERITAGE HOUSE” in urgent need of a internal repairs facelift .

 

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A view of the decaying ruins of “Pai Tiatr ” heritage house in Modsai.

 

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A view of the 150 year old crumbling “HERITAGE HOUSE” of “Pai Tiatr”.

 

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A different side view view of “Pai Tiatr” heritage house.

 

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Mr Godfrey.J.I.Gonsalves. and self inside the 150 year old crumbling house of “Pai Tiatr” in Modsai.

 

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A Internal view of 150 year old “Pai Tiatr” heritage house.A typical Goan Catholic house decor although 150 years old internal structure. In urgent need of repairs to preserve this heritage house.

 

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A Internal view of 150 year old “Pai Tiatr” heritage house.A typical Goan Catholic house decor although 150 years old internal structure. Religious icons in the house. In urgent need of repairs to preserve this heritage house.

Had been on a solo motorcycle ride from Mumbai to Barkur and back to Mumbai on my “Bullet 350 Black BS IV” with in-between rest-stops of a few days in Goa. On my return ride from Barkur to Mumbao on Monday(6/5/2018) had a 2 day stop-over at Margao.On Tuesday(7/5/2019) decided to explore some of the locales in Margao while cruising  the city on my motorcycle.Just rode my bike randomly around the main city circle towards Holy Spirit church and came across some old Portuguese era bungalows .Stopped my bike in the vicinity of Modsai village and just strolled aimlessly wandering and admiring the architecture of these beautiful palatial bungalows. A gentleman on a scooter stopped besides me and  i was lucky to have a chance meeting with socialist activist writer  and tiatrist Mr Godfrey.J.I.Gonsalves.

 

 

Ancestral House of Musician Chris.Perry in Modsai village of Margao.                                                                                                                                                                                                                             He explained me the heritage importance of this locality in Margao  and showed me the heritage house of Goan musician,composer,songwriter and film producer  Mr Chris.Perry who was a gifted trumpeter and also the person responsible for launching the singing career of Lorna.Cordeiro, called the nightingale of Goa.           He later took me to the house of Joao. Augustinho.Fernandes who has been honoured with the title of “Pai Tiatrist(Father of Theatre)” and after  whom  the main auditorium hall at Ravindra Bhavan is named.  Joao. Augustinho.Fernandes  has been honoured with the title of “Pai Tiatrist(Father of Theatre)” by the State Govt of Goa and after  whom  the main auditorium hall at Ravindra Bhavan in Margao  is named.Sadly his relatives now residing in this heritage house cannot afford the repairs and maintenance of the building and the same as seen in the photo is in gradual decay  Thanks to social activist and free lance blogger Mr Godfrey.J.I.Gonsalves who knows the family personally that i got entry into this historic crumbling house as also to view the awards and literature on Joao.Augustinho.Fernandes and his spouse Regina.Fernandes who was also a actress in the World of Goan Tiatr(Theatre).With real estate prices zooming in Goa this house would have been redeveloped into a palatial modern building or resort had it not been for a few activists like Mr Godfrey.J.I.Gonsalves who created awareness for preserving the  house of  the father of Konkani Tiatr. The Government of Goa has declared this house as a “Heritage Monument” and hope it is internally repaired while preserving its main 150 year old external structure.Tremendous tourist revenue could be generated by exhibiting such houses as living museums. I myself would have paid a entrance fee to visit this house and get a glimpse of the residence of  the founder of Tiatr in Goa..

 

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Literature and write-ups in the house on media write-ups on “Pai Tiatr Joao Augustinho Fernandes” . Also the awards by the State Govt of Goa. The present descendants inheriting this historic house do not have the funds to maintain or repair this 150 year old Portuguese era house. Awards and Press write-ups do not automatically convert into mega bucks money.

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” PAI TIATRIST JOAO AUGUSTINHO AUDITORIUM ” in RAVINDRA BHAVAN in Margao.

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Recognition and honour by the State Govt of Goa to “Pai Tiatr”.

CHATRAPATI SHIVAJI MAHARAJ PARK :-“Cradle of Indian Cricket” and ” Political Gatherings”.

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Shivaji Park ground littered with garbage at its central locale..

Just happened to visit “Shivaji Park Ground” early in the morning  on Sunday(24/2/2019) between 0700 hrs -0800 hrs and was sad on seeing almost the entire historic playground littered with plastic waste, paper and plastic water bottles.

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Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Ground( 1925) is the cradle of Indian Cricket. Many “Cricket Pitches” with Nets are erected at various places on this sprawling ground.

A political rally organised by Mr Prakash Ambedkar and Mr Asaduddin Owaisi’s was held the previous night on Saturday(23/2/2019) and hence the litter the day after this massive political rally. Shivaji Park was established in 1925 as the “Mahim Park” until its name was changed to “Shivaji Park” in 1927 and over the decades has been the venue for the Indian Freedom movement during British rule and post Independence the venue for various political parties most notable the “Shiv Sena”.

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Notice the litter of waste in the middle of the ground which is in the process of being cleaned.

Beside’s being the “CRADLE” of “Indian Cricket” having nurtured some of India’s house-hold cricket names Shivaji park is also famous for its large political rallies like the one held yesterday.The cleaning of the park was identical to cleaning Prabhadevi sea beach at low tide as such was the amount of waste litter on this large beautiful playground.

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.Young budding cricketers undergoing their daily grueling fitness training exercises.

      Local budding cricketers were practicing at the “Nets wickets ” nurtured at certain spots on this large  27.9 acres ground, the largest ground within Mumbai city.Came across “Achrekar Sports Club”  training nets on one end of the ground where Cricket Coach Mr Vivek.Todankar was guiding young girl’s and boy’s in the skill’s of the game.

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“Gulli Cricket(Tennis Ball Cricket)” being played on the periphery parts of the ground.Playing on the “Net Pitches” is charged while “Gully Cricket” is free and popular amongst those not able to afford attending a “Cricket Coaching Institution” or hiring a cricket pitch for a few hours. Shivaji Park accommodates all types of games with football being popular during the Monsoon season.  Player’s from various economic strata’s of society get a chance to use this ground throughout the year .Who know’s ? One of these “Gully Cricketer’s” could become the next State level or International level cricketer.

Aspiring cricketers were practicing at the Nets which cost a hire rate of Rs 800 for  2 to 3 Hrs. The tuition charges for the cricket classes  were  Rs 1000/ month with a entrance fee of Rs 6000.                                                                                                                                       

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“Achrekar Cricket Coaching” classes being conducted on a section of the ground.Coach Mr Vivek.Tondankar  coaching the young girls and boy’s on different “Net Pitches”.Here the Girl’s are being coached.

Holding large rallies is normal as has been since the formation of this park  but we Indians attending these rallies should observe some civic sense and see that plastic bottles, eatable wrappers and other waste is thrown into a rubbish bin and not onto this large sprawling ground.

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“Big Boy’s” practicing at the net’s on a section of the ground.Charges for renting a part of the ground for a day’s cricket game range from Rs 20,000 – Rs 25,000. 

 Why are we Indian’s so callous in observing basic civic sense in our own country but would avoid the same when touring outside India where in some country’s it’s a punishable crime to throw litter on the streets.I am not trying to change India and my own city Mumbai but hope to create some awareness about basic civic cleanliness .

“HOME GALA- 2019” :-Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Pool Swimming Competitions.

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Spectators encouraging the competitors most of whom were parents cheering their young children.SWIMMING SHOULD BE MADE A MANDATORY COURSE IN SCHOOLS

Sunday (24/2/2019) :- Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Olympic Swimming Pool(M.G.M.O) in Mumbai held its annual “Home Gala -2019” swimming competition at its majestic pool complex .

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Traditional inauguration of the start of the “HOME GALA-2019” Swimming competition.

Definitely one of the largest public municipal pool in India having 4 different pools within its complex .Only member’s of the pool which consists of approximately 15,000 members were allowed to participate. 50 meters(One Length of the main 50 meter Olympic pool) races were held in this Olympic size pool for various age groups of boy’s and girls,men and women beginning with the age group of 7 years which had 25 meters maximum distance while the rest age groups of upto 60 Years of age had 50 meters as the maximum distance.

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EVENTS FOR THE “HOME GALA -2019” swimming competitions.

25 meters Freestyle and Breast Stroke races were also held for Men and Women above the age of 60 years.Hence every age group swimming member got a opportunity for competing in a regular race.Competitive races were held in the disciplines of “Butterfly Stroke”, “Breast Stroke”, “Back Stroke” and the ” Freestyle Stroke”.

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Just arrived at the swimming pool for the competition.A normal daily casual routine if not in competition.

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First race of the competition. “Under 7 Years Butterfly” stroke

Here i am competing in the 50 meters freestyle for “50-60 Years” age group.Placed 4th out of 6 swimmers while swimming in lane N0 5.I am basically a long distance swimmer averaging a daily swim of 2 Kms ++ at this pool during my normal daily fitness cycling and swimming workouts.

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Swimming Coach Mr Percy.Hakim seen talking with the competition officials is synonymous with “M.G.M.O” pool and its alma mater of National and State level swimmers .In fact when I first applied for membership in the 20th century(Read 1990’s) he took my swimming test of swimming 30 meters in the small pool.Today I leisurely swim 3 Kms ++.Jai Ho

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A photo-shoot after the 50 meters freestyle competition in which i placed 4th out of 6 competitors in the “50-60 Years” age Group.

 

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Placed 4th out of 6 competitors.

This was the first time in my life that i participated in a swimming competition and as the saying goes you are never too young or old to achieve or do anything in life.

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Lifeguards and “Timekeepers” at the shallow end(Finish line) of the Olympic size 50 meters pool

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The “GRAND STAND” of “M.G.M.O” pool. Strangely photography is prohibited inside the pool premises.Have visited pools outside India where photography is allowed.

Proud to have participated and completed the race as i learned swimming at a very late age in my life always a outdoors Terra- firma sportsman and athlete but never a water baby during my formative growing years although later in life spent 23 years onn/off in sailing the seas’s in my profession as a “Marine Engineer”.Its strange but true that you need not know swimming to be a “Scuba Diver” and similar i am sure that many hard core sailors might be clumsy swimmers. Jai Ho.. :- Seafarer/Blogger/Traveller Rudolph.A.Furtado

KALA GHODA FESTIVAL -2019 .STAND-UP-COMEDY AT IRISH HOUSE.

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Host Jeeya.Sethi introducing each “Stand Up Comedian” for their time slot on stage.

Thursday(7/2/2019) KALA GHODA ARTS FESTIVAL (Stand-Up Comedy at the IRISH HOUSE) :- 2019 is the 20th anniversary of Mumbai’s famed “KALA GHODA FESTIVAL’ in the historic Fort locality of Bombay now Mumbai.Over the decades have seen every facet of this festival with my favourite rendezvous obviously being the classic heritage “Literature/Writer Discourses” on the David Sassoon library lawns”. This year decided to visit the “STAND-UP COMEDY” enacted at the “Irish Pub” .

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Packed Audience inside Irish House for the “Stand Up Comedy” shows.

Had to wait for one and a half hour in the queue for a “Front Row” seat next to the performers.The ambiance inside the “Irish Pub” reminded me of the pubs of London and Europe, a replica of the European watering holes and naturally voted the best bar in Town.The “Stand-Up -Comedy” acts started at 1615 hrs with the host being Jeeya.Sethi.

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The “Narrator” in the crowd in Irish House.

As a Marine Engineer Sailor with 23 years onn/Off sea sailing under my belt having sailed during the hey day’s of shipping port stay’s where the proverb was,quote, “A sailor has a wife in every Port” was blushing like a girl on hearing the “Sex jokes” by this talented young group of “Adult Men and Women Comedians”.Remember that unlike we sailors on ship’s which was a total “Male Complement” during my era of sailing this small pub auditorium had a mix of men and women besides women stand-up comedian performers . Bizarrely, besides a gentleman of 76 years of age i could have been the next oldest with the entire pub packed with college teenagers .Photography or videography was strictly prohibited and the reasons were obvious as the ‘CENSOR BOARD” would come into the picture.This was the last day of the “STAND UP COMEDY” show and i definitely didn’t waste my time or thirst for knowledge. Came out of Irish House sexually educated on the sexual thinking and manners of the average milennial collegian of happening city Mumbai. As a former sailor i felt “OLD FASHIONED” in the sexual permissiveness of 21st century Mumbai. Jai Ho.

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IRISH HOUSE on Rampart Row in Kala Ghoda locality of Mumbai.One of Mumbai’s best pub’s for its ambiance and locale.

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The performing “STAND UP COMEDIANS” sitting in a corner of the Irish House .

Jeeya Sethi (Host) Jeeya believes if you are fat once (by fat she means FAAAAT) you are fat forever.
Mentally you never become thin even after losing all the weight. She has made
entertainment her new life’s mission since nothing else is going for her!
Raunaq Rajani A pure-bred Bombay boy, Raunaq Rajani has been in the comedy scene for a little
more than half a decade. Insightful perspectives, honest observations and sarcastic wit
make Raunaq an act that you shoudn’t miss!
Prashasti Singh Prashasti Singh is yet another IIM graduate searching for meaning outside academic
excellence and material achievement. She has found space for expressing her smalltown sensibilities in this big town hustle.
Ashish Dash Amongst the few things we know about Ashish Dash are the fact that he is from the
great state of Odisha and that he is fond of monkeys. Dash’s act is more confession
than comedy and can be memorably disturbing, This is why he is not popular at house
parties. A very jolly fellow, Ashish plans to make friends in the future.
Sonali Thakker Sonali’s stand-up is powerful, always funny and sometimes scary. The other big love
of her life is travelling, as it gives her great material and is the only way she can escape
from people cracking sad Gujju jokes.
Siddharth Gopinath A very, very tall person from Chennai.
Anand Reghu Published reports say that Anand Reghu has been on the Mumbai stand-up scene for
seven long years since its very inception. This cannot be proved or disproved but it is
ok. Reghu claims to be a Parsi with a bad case of sun burn but we have our doubts.
Masoom Rajwani Masoom Rajwani is one the youngest and most promising stand-up acts on the scene
and one of the few Sindhis who refuses to do a Sindhi joke.
Sumit Anand Sumit Anand has a YouTube Channel containing stand-up videos, you can check it out
and dont have to read below then.
Manik Mahna Manik Mahna is an Indian comedian from Delhi. His style of dry, almost offensive
but in a funny sort of way comedy is what he’s loved for. Manik is an Ultimate Street
Dance battle champion.
Curator: Jeeya Sethi Team: Dhruv Sanghvi & Masoom Rajwani