Sunday, 1 March 2015

Visions of India

The television serial of The Jewel in the Crown was largely responsible for a significant proportion of my Gap year.  I was therefore on tenterhooks awaiting Indian Summers, which my Sunday evenings are now structured around.  Because, even though it's shot in Malaysia, it's still the closest I've got to India in about five years.

I have to go - I keep finding little visions - all of which I take as signs directing me to the Air India website, and my obsession with Good Earth is becoming almost overwhelming - I need these plates:

Indus Plates by Good Earth

Our bathroom needs these towels:

Ceylon Towels by Good Earth

And Sholto and Esmeralda need this tent:

The Caravan Galaxy Tent by Good Earth - how heavenly?  (Although Esmeralda says she'd like it to feature palm trees and spiders, rather than camels.)

Good Earth do actually ship worldwide, but I'm sure that it would be more cost effective for me to actually go there. . . .   So, as an interim, I re-read Rumer Godden's The Peacock Spring, which is beyond wonderful, and went to see Dara at the National Theatre, which is on until the 4th April and which tells the tale of two brothers, Aurangzeb and Dara, and their battle for succession in Mughal India.  The sets are exceptional - all the action takes place either in Agra Fort or the Red Fort in Delhi - as are the costumes, and the predominant theme of the play, which concerns religion and extremism, is both fascinating and relevant; one slightly wonders how it is that we are still having the same arguments 350 years later, but there we go.

Dara at the National Theatre

So while I'm preparing myself for a Good Earth binge, I'm considering the merits of wallpapering a room (or two) in something that will inspire feelings of being in the sub-continent.  Firstly, Jacqueline Seifert's Kerala collection of wallpaper, which I discovered at Craft back in January:

Rickshaw wallpaper by Jacqueline Seifert.   Just looking at it I can almost feel the vibrations (in a Keralan Beach Boys, kind of way.)

And here's another of Jacqueline Seifert's designs from the range, on a wall, suddenly, I'm thinking that my bathroom needs this.  And palm trees!  

But then, there's also Manuel Canovas and Pierre Frey to take into consideration:

Bengale by Manuel Canovas - I've been in love with this wallpaper for almost as long as I can remember

Jardin de Mysore by Pierre Frey (yes, basically I just love elephants.)

Maoris by Pierre Frey, which perhaps isn't so obviously of a particular country but which definitely makes me think of India.

Any decisions are going to take a while, not least because I'll have to convince my husband who thinks he doesn't like wallpaper.   In the mean time, The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is now at the cinema.  A vision of India is better than no India at all.