Thursday, 29 October 2009


I read that the bright colours on the tartan which were attributed to local plant dyes were actually imported. It has been scientifically proven that red was from cochineal from the Americas and the bright blue is indigo imported from India. The connections between India and Scotland fascinate me.

Here I cheekily post a sari advert from a famous silk house in South India.It is a modern version of a very old silk print that has been woven for hundreds of years. But I see a tartan pattern in it. My grandmother had similar silk saris. Of course tartan and bagpipes were also made in Punjab for the British Army. From Paisley near Glasgow that had mills reproducing the beautiful pattern that originated in India to the tartan dyes, the links between the two countries weaves a wonderful pattern in my mind.

Monday, 26 October 2009

Madras Club

Wallowed in David Lean's spectacular film of EM Foster's 'Passage to India'on Saturday afternoon on Channel Five. The scenes at the club in the film reminded me of Madras Club in my hometown. The film caused controversy when the rock caves were blasted to create the scene that David Lean wanted. As Ian Jack of the Times wrote it was almost as sacrilegious as blasting Stonehenge. Media hype I suppose, but wonder how many rocks in Scotland would be allowed to be blasted by Bollywood directors? David Lean's craft is unmatched of course and I enjoyed the film.

Time to Blog is getting harder as Twitter, FB and writing my next novel is taking hold.The rough draft of the novel is the hardest to complete.That's where I am just now.Then comes the editing and polishing. I am happy with the theme of the new novel and it is good when a sentence turns out just right.

Finally the photo shows me at the SMAFF held at the Mitchell Library on 16th and 17th October when I was plugging my novel 'Twice Born' at the Border's outlet. Don't miss the balloons!

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