After years of missed plans and dilly dallying , finally managed to attend the 9th Jaipur Literature Festival like someone rightly described it as the Ibiza of Literature ,it was worth the wait and lived up to the hype and buzz around it.
Diggi Palace: The Venue for the festival that has been witnessing the festival grow by leaps and bounds in each successive year. The venue offered the right mix of heritage and grandeur. With 6 different venues inside the Palace offering more than 40 + program daily over 5 days!! The intellectual stimulation that this festival offered is something to be experienced.
The Delegate entry that I had subscribed for gave me the opportunity to rub shoulders and dine with the best, the English Literature has to offer. Luckily I had no one to accompany me for the festival, so this gave me an opportunity to completely soak myself with all the knowledge and listen to the session that was of my interest. The authors from across the globe were in every nook and corner. Like I overheard someone saying “There are so many of them we need a Shazam for Authors!!”
So besides the serious book lovers there were free loaders, Celebrity hunters and the School and College Kids. Most of them there to catch a glimpse of a Bollywood Celebrity spend time in amazing ambience and surroundings and to come out nattily attired.
I too did have my fan moments when had the chance to interact with some of my favorites Authors / Celebrity such as Shashi Tharoor, Javed Akhtar, Atul Gawande, William Dalrymple, Pawan Verma to a name a few !!
The Festival days began with Indian Classical Music at the Front Lawns and ended with great Musical evenings that culminated with the Writers Ball at the Le Meridian on the 25th January. The musical fusion in the evening had everyone letting down their hair and party away!!
There were some fun and light moments that I managed to overhear and witness.
- On Sunday when the venue was bursting out of its seams, overheard a middle aged couple complaining “ कुम्भ के मेले जैसा लग रहा है , इतनी पब्लिक कहाँ से आ गयी?”
- A group of young college boys standing at the gate of the venue saying “बहुत घूम लिए बस एक फिरंगी के साथ फोटो खिंचवा लेते हैं, बस फिर चलते हैं !!”
- A young lady telling her husband / boyfriend at the end of the day “चलो अब निकलने से पहले एक सेल्फी तो ले लें.”
The festival had something to offer to everybody from the best in Literature, to Food and to Music spread over 5 exciting days. Come 2017 and I am there for sure. The organizers : Teamworks Arts has year after year managed to give a flawless and impeccable JLF , Hats off to them !!