Tag: Girija Madhavan

Tales from Family Lore…
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Tales from Family Lore…

February 16, 2020

By Girija Madhavan Images of the 1920s and early 1930s are reprints of the descriptions of my father, M. Venkatesh and mother Mukta, a memory bank for me. Venkatesh was an engineer in the Mysore State Railways. Mysore was a conservative society, each community adhering strictly to their customs but living together in amity. My…

Farewell to Tokyo
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Farewell to Tokyo

January 12, 2020

By Girija Madhavan A few months into a new diplomatic post, normally of three years, I would settle into a comfort zone, at ease with the local language and customs. As time wore on, a familiar angst would appear, “Where next?” Our stay in Japan, where my husband, A. Madhavan, had been posted as Ambassador…

Celebrating Indian Art in Japan
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Celebrating Indian Art in Japan

July 7, 2019

By Girija Madhavan My abiding memories of Japan, apart from the friendships formed there, are of the art and aesthetics of the country. My husband, A. Madhavan, was posted as Indian Ambassador to Japan in 1985. Before we left Japan in 1988, a “Festival of India” was celebrated there featuring Indian classical and folk art,…

Sakura Flower Power
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Sakura Flower Power

April 21, 2019

By Girija Madhavan Cherry blossom, “Sakura”, is the national flower of Japan. In spring, the trees begin to bloom. Japan waits for the pink and white tide, starting in the warm tip of Okinawa, to spread over the country and finally reach the heights of cold Hokkaido. Newspapers print the cherry blossom forecasts of various…

An unique experience in Gifu, Japan: Cormorant Fishing
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An unique experience in Gifu, Japan: Cormorant Fishing

March 24, 2019

By Girija Madhavan Indian diplomats enjoy a variety of cultural events when posted abroad; musical recitals, dances or ethnic programmes of the countries they are accredited to. In Japan, a different experience was to be  invited to witness an old fishing tradition in Gifu, Cormorant Fishing. My husband, A. Madhavan and I were among a…

A Glimpse of the Geisha World
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A Glimpse of the Geisha World

February 16, 2019

By Girija Madhavan Images of Mount Fuji, cherry blossoms, bullet trains or electronic devices come to mind when thinking of Japan. Less familiar is another Japanese icon: the Geisha in a kimono, with traditional hairdo, white makeup, scarlet lipstick and an aura of mystery and allure. In Japanese, the word “Gei” stands for art and…

Mysore in Brush-strokes
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Mysore in Brush-strokes

January 2, 2019

By Girija Madhavan An oil-painting of a pastoral scene in green and gold, catches a ray of the morning sun where it hangs on a wall in our home. The workers in the field seem to come alive, the foliage moves in the morning breeze in contrast to the static hay ricks in the background….

CHANOYU: The Japanese Tea Ceremony
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CHANOYU: The Japanese Tea Ceremony

November 26, 2018

By Girija Madhavan  Chanoyu,” or “The Way of Tea” is a Japanese tradition of serving tea, a ritual evolved over centuries. It is the ceremonial presentation of “Matcha” or powdered green tea by a Tea Master [man or woman] to a small group of guests, generally in specified tea houses. With Zen Buddhist origins, it…

The World of Sumo, Japanese Wrestling
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The World of Sumo, Japanese Wrestling

October 14, 2018

By Girija Madhavan Mysuru is hosting Dasara, its most important festival. Elephants are brought from jungle camps to lend their caparisoned presence to the procession. Parks display pots of salvias,  zinnias and dahlias; flower beds of cockscomb, cosmos and chrysanthemums. Traditional sports like “Kusti” [wrestling] are a feature of Dasara. Local wrestlers participate in matches,…

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