Why this blog is called "Gallimaufry".

gal-uh-MAW-free\, noun.

Originally meaning "a hash of various kinds of meats," "gallimaufry" comes from French galimafrée; in Old French, from the word galer, "to rejoice, to make merry"; in old English: gala + mafrer: "to eat much," and from Medieval Dutch maffelen: "to open one's mouth wide."

It's also a dish made by hashing up odds and ends of food; a heterogeneous mixture; a hodge-podge; a ragout; a confused jumble; a ridiculous medley; a promiscuous (!) assemblage of persons.

Those of you who know me, will, I’m sure, understand how well some of these phrases (barring the "promiscuous" bit!) fit me.

More importantly, this blog is an ode to my love for Shimla. I hope to show you this little town through my eyes. If you don't see too many people in it, forgive me, because I'm a little chary of turning this into a human zoo.

Stop by for a spell, look at my pictures, ask me questions about Shimla, if you wish. I shall try and answer them as best as I can. Let's be friends for a while....

9 December 2008

And yet more roofs.

I have decided to stop being apologetic about my love of Shimla's rooftops. They exist, they are varied and I love each and every one of them. For good measure, I have placed an old, old favourite, sung by Carole King. The title? Of course, "Up On The Roof"!

The roof and frontage of Himachal Emporium is rather interesting, even if defaced by the ghastly board advertising the name of that worthy entity.

I was walking past Chaura Maidan yesterday, when I happened to look up and noticed this rooftop. I stared. I squinted. I rubbed my eyes. Couldn't believe what I was seeing. Was that an urn placed in a shelf??? I zoomed in on the object. Yes! It was an urn with some pretty blue design on it. And now, looking at the photograph, I cannot but help marvel at the sheer blueness of the sky....

(See image below).

The questions that now plague me day and night: Who put it there? Does it contain anything? How does it stay up? Is it glued in place? If not, then what if there's a strong gust of wind? Will it blow off and fall on Praveen who sells me my daily bread? (I sincerely hope not).

This wonderful rooftop is a part of the Railway Board Building. Isn't the contrast of the red with the blue of the sky behind simply lovely?

En fin, the roof of the Himachal Tourism Corporation's office on Scandal Point. Interesting, in its own little way. I clearly belong to the wrong era. I should have been born in the era when government buildings were constructed aesthetically in our country. Alas.

And now, the promised ditty...
When this old world starts a getting me down
And people are just too much for me to face
I’ll climb way up to the top of the stairs
And all my cares just drift right into space

On the roof, it’s peaceful as can be
And there the world below don’t bother me, no, no

So when I come home feeling tired and beat
I’ll go up where the air is fresh and sweet
I’ll get far away from the hustling crowd
And all the rat-race noise down in the street

On the roof, that’s the only place I know
Look at the city, baby
Where you just have to wish to make it so
Let’s go up on the roof

And at night the stars they put on a show for free
And, darling, you can share it all with me
That’s what I said
Keep on telling you

That right smack dab in the middle of town
I found a paradise that’s troubleproof
And if this old world starts a getting you down
There’s room enough for two
Up on the roof...


Ann said...

I love all those quirky little things. It surprises me how much more I notice now that I have a photo blog. That blue urn is great.

Atoorva said...

oh so u also noticed the urn....we used to call it the holy grail . Yeah..there is soemthing very mysterious about it. Who'd have thought that place for it.

Scribbler said...

I noticed that urn last year (actually this year) when visiting you, and never thought to ask you about it, somehow! It's rather pretty, up close.

Gallimaufry said...

No one has a clue about the urn. The only person left to ask is Raja Bhasin.

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