Wednesday, January 23, 2008


The good news - a store with my name. The bad news - I can't find a shop with anything I want to buy in it. If anyone took a notion to open a 'provisions store' anywhere in India (except Pondicherry where there is one), they'd make a killing. Just a guess, but if they stocked say toothpaste, postcards and toilet paper, I would go there. In fact, I'd probably travel across the country to get to it.

It took a three plane hop and the whole day to travel from the south to the north. Each time I saw the the same two and a half hours of Namaste London, featuring Akshay Kumar looking very sad in lots of different outfits all over London. You never find out if he gets the girl. How frustrating is that? I loved Delhi and am looking forward to going back there for a day. There are things to buy there. I checked that out already. Christmas is still to happen in Pantland.

Right now I'm in the lovely pink city of Jaipur, notable for its lack of ATMs and bad tempered vendors. Even if you were to find postcards or toothpaste or toilet paper, I doubt very much you could convince anyone to sell you any of them. Our hotel is hosting a literary festival at the moment. Last year they had Salman Rushdie and Kirin Desai. I would have loved to tell Kirin Desai that I don't think much of The Inheritance of Loss. Instead they've got Gore Vidal. I thought he was dead. I considered approaching him but then realised that the only book I liked of his was in fact written by Kurt Vonnegut.

I've got used to dirty clothes and the world's slowest internet and not being able to buy anything I'd vaguely want outside of the biggest cities. I don't think there's much of a chance I'll develop a taste for wooden chess sets and bangles that turn into Grecian urns. Still, I've finally worked out what our yoga teacher has been saying at the end of the lesson all this time...


Reading the Signs said...

Thank you Pants, but just because you didn't get to see the end of the Bollywood film doesn't mean you have to withold potentially life-enhancing information: so what has the yoga teacher been saying?

Andrew said...

Might of read one of Vidal's books, can't recall. But he is an entertaining speaker.

Sounds like you are having FUN Pants.

That's So Pants said...

Hi Signs

I believe she says, 'namaste'

Hi Andrew

Even better. I've got an invite to a screening of Atonement tonight with a Q&A with Ian McEwan and Christopher Hampton afterwards. Jaipur certainly is FUN.



tpe said...

Greetings and firmly attractive hugs from Ireland, most glorious Pantaloon. That is brilliant news that there is a shop named after you in Jaipur (or Delhi, perhaps?) Anyway, I just knew the locals would take to you.

Gore Vidal is dead, surely? I think someone, somewhere, has maybe got their wires crossed, you know. Or perhaps we (do you like how I drag you into this?) are thinking of Norman Mailer? Either way, it's pretty tricky trying to muster adequate concern.

And what's wrong with wooden chess sets? They're magic. Buy me one, please, I collect them.

Apart from that, we're sweet.

Tread happily, Unterhosen of Jaipur, the gathering distance does nothing to reduce the magnetic lure of your pen. (Maybe wash your clothes a wee bitty more often, though.)


R.H. said...

When screwballs like Vidal are seen in India it usually means they're dead.

phil said...

All Gore Vidal's best books were by Kurt Vonnegut.

R.H. said...

Publish some bloody comments!

People can't wait around to see what they've said.
I dote on what I've said, and want to see it -immediately! Okay?

Wake up!- being in India is no excuse for incompetence -unless you're an Indian!


That's So Pants said...

Hi everyone

I'm in Bundi now - after having been in the jungle for a few days - RH - have some bloody patience, I'm in a third world country for effsake.



R.H. said...

What? I've got plenty of patients, too many. Read my profile.

That's So Pants said...

What profile? I'm going bush again tomorrow so don't expect any published comments for a couple more days.