The sun was waiting in the skies to greet us in the Golden Gate city! After a rather zig-zag route over the seas that took us from Baroda to Mumbai to Singapore to Seoul and finally to San Francisco, my tolerance for bad Hollywood films was at a low! Sincere advise to any traveller: take a route that does not seduce you with short stop overs. Looks good on paper but is a nightmare in reality We were like two India spies in a remake of a James Bond film that started with two Singapore airline officials waiting for us on the threshold of the Mumbai international departure doorway (!) and scuttling us through all formalities as we bounced behind him like bunny rabbits on steroids. We jumped queues and elbowed out other passengers who were waiting patiently for their turn, and high-pole vaulted security ropes whilst looking every inch the part of shady undercover agents, with a dubious art mission on hand!
At Singapore we were whisked off once again with poor Surendran who almost fell off the in-service buggy-cart that took off before he had actually sat down! With shin cuts and band-aids in place, we reached our next destination, only to be power-walked from one end of the Seoul airport to the other, with seconds to spare to meet the take off time! Any hope of wandering into duty free shops or using a toilet facility were only a distant wish that never materialised.
The Frey Norris Gallery Management are truly wonderful. One of them were at the airport to meet us with a smile that dissolved all my fatigue in an instant. The Hotel Adagio where the gallery is hosting our stay is just a few doors from the gallery which is on Geary Street, and it offers a very relaxed and easy paced schedule for us for the next six days that we are here in San Francisco. At FNG Surendran's paintings were all lined up against the gallery walls in their bubble wrap petticoats (!) waiting to be placed up on the walls. The gallery management sensing our tiredness very lovingly sent us off with strict instructions to have fun and leave the work to them to do.
After settling in to our hotel room Surendran slept for a while, and I chose to unpack and get that chore out of the way. Then we both showered and stepped out to wander the main street we are located on. We finally went into a bar and toasted ourselves with the old Bacardi and coke concoction, and ate a cozy dinner at a Thai restaurant next to our hotel. At 11 pm local time even missy RR was with her batteries down to zero (!), and all I know next is that I woke up at 7.30 am this morning to yet another sunny day.
Well Mr. Obama don't say I didn't bring a gift with me! An email from home told me it was rainy and over cast back in Baroda. So sunshine and clear skies are wrapped up in ribbon clouds with a message that reads: from India with love!