Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Good (bye) times!

                        In a way 'our revels are now ended'! At least in London. Time to say bye to all dear ones. And I am now packing my paints and brushes, not before my last foray into portraits, my newest passion !

                        This one I presented to our dear friends Dr John and Wendy Marr, a very adorable couple with whom we spent a day in their  lovely idyllic home outside London.
Dr John and Wendy Marr happy with my little portrait of them

Both are ardent indophiles, Dr Marr received the prestigious 'Padma Shree' award last year! Their varied interests outside their academics include botany, flora and fauna, model trains and aeroplanes, music, photography - just to name a few! We spent a very educative afternoon in their garden learning about various plants from all corners of the world, ably maintained by the very green hands of Wendy! My heart almost stopped when suddenly Dr John climbed a rickety ladder to pluck juicy fig fruits for us!
Afternoon tea in the garden
Burmese Pagoda which came to London in 1917 for an Imperial Exhibition!(Very interesting story how it found its way here!)

Tasmanian Fern

Leaves of a Japanese tree mostly found in Buddhist monastries with herbal uses
We were both amazed to know about their adventurous journey  from London to India in 1969, in their newly bought Austin Minor (the backdoor of which is still preserved) very nicely captured in a poster of photographs from that visit! With razor sharp memory Dr Marr can recall myriad anecdotes with accurate names and places! A veritable treasure-house of knowledge we were lucky to partake of! Even after their retirement, they keep a very busy schedule teaching at the SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies) and Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. When I presented my portrait with my apologies for being a learner of portrait painting, he said, ' Murugesan, would not the world be a dull place if there is nothing new to learn or do everyday?'- which  in a nutshell is the message of the man and also is the secret behind his and Wendy's youthful energy! Truly cherishable moments!

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