The Story In Moimeme's Words

I arrived in Mumbai on the night of the 26th.  Earlier, Snehal had told me that Srishti (Salman’s assistant responsible for SKF matters) has said to him that she would see if she could coordinate with Salman’s schedule and arrange a meeting for us.  I wasn’t too expectant about this, since Salman usually goes out of town a day or so before his birthday, but I was willing to take whatever came our way. J

Before I left for Mumbai, I had already had a PM from Saurabh that Snehal had arrived in Mumbai and that he had seen the birthday book, and it was very beautiful.  Once I landed in Mumbai, I messaged Snehal, and he and Saurabh came over to my hotel, so we could meet, and not have any confusion the next day.  When they came, Snehal said that Srishti had told him that Salman had already left for Panvel, so we would not be meeting him.  Snehal said he was disappointed, but I was secretly relieved.

They hadn’t brought the book, as they didn’t want to damage it carrying it around town.  We had a good time getting acquainted, and then we made arrangements for the next day. According to Snehal, Srishti had said she would meet us around noon, so he suggested that I wait at the hotel until he called me in the morning, after hearing from Srishti.  But I was keen to have a look around Salman’s place, and see the gathering of fans whom I expected to be there, so said I would go earlier, so as to have plenty of time for all that. 

In the morning Saurabh’s friend M came to my hotel, and the two of us set off.  Saurabh said that M was not a fan of Salman’s but that she liked to participate in the birthday deed since it was for charity.  She had come last year, too.

After I’d gotten on the plane to Mumbai, I realized that I had forgotten to take Salman’s address; I could remember Galaxy Apartments, of course, and then vaguely remembered something about Carter Road, so I was hoping that would be enough.  I figured that in a pinch, I could always say I wanted to go to Salman Khan’s house, and that should be enough for the driver.  Snehal told me to just ask to be taken to Bandra.

Well, M and I set off, and told the driver to take us to Bandra Bandstand.  We were chatting and getting acquainted, and after a while the driver said, “Here we are.”  I was thinking this didn’t look like anything I had seen in videos of Salman’s house, when M exclaimed, “No, this isn’t the place!  We want to go to Bandra Bandstand!”  The driver insisted that this was Bandra.  M then said, “No, you know the Bandstand, it’s next to the sea.”  Now she used the English word “sea”, even though the rest of it was in Hindi, and he asked, “What is ‘sea?’”  M explained that the place we wanted was next to the water. He said, you mean such and such a place. M said no, and started giving detailed instructions, like, it is past this place, next to that place, and so on.  Our driver still seemed mystified, so finally she said, “You know, it’s where Salman Khan and Shahrukh Khan have their houses!”  That did the trick. J  “Oh!” said our driver, “you want to go there!”  And then he promptly took us there with no more confusion. J

M pointed out that we were next to the sea, and I was thinking it looked nice, when she said, “There, that’s Salman’s house.  Galaxy Apartments.”

So we got down and I took some video of the front  of the building, with a nice close up of the sign saying “Galaxy Apartments.”  There was some construction going on there, so the immediate surroundings didn’t look so inviting, but still, I thought I should commemorate the occasion.  I was also disappointed not to see any fans gathered around.  Of course, it was only about 10:30 am. M said they would come in a little while, as the TV channels came along. 

There was a very nice “Citizens’ Promenade” along the sea shore, so we walked along that for a while.  At the beginning (near Salman’s building) there were about half a dozen young guys sitting on a bench, and I wondered if they were Salman’s fans, but then decided that I was becoming too obsessed.  It is a very pleasant place to walk, and the sea views were very serene and beautiful, with fishing boats in the distance, and not too  many people.  After walking along some way, we turned back toward Galaxy apartments.  M said there was a flower shop nearby and Snehal wanted us to pick up some flowers to give to Srishti, so we went there and bought a nice bouquet of purple orchids.   

We left the bouquet in our car, and as we came back to the promenade area, the guys who had been sitting there now got up and were coming toward the street.  We passed them quite near, and now I knew for sure they were Salman’s fans, because one of them was wearing a bracelet exactly like Salman’s! J  I wanted to take a video of that, but by the time I got my camera out, they had already passed us by.  I thought another of them might be sporting a Radhe Mohan haircut, except that Radhe’s hair was straight, and t his guy’s was somewhat curly.  So maybe we can call it a Veer haircut without the hair gel? (Like Salman had on Children’s Day, lol).

 

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Birthday Deeds 2008