I love the way India grabs you as soon as you arrive. The privileged travellers in First Class wait longer for their bags than any other passenger and although my hotel is supposedly very near the airport, my taxi still costs about half what it cost to get into downtown Mumbai (at least an hour journey). The driver smiles as we pull up outside. I could have walked there in five minutes, we drove there in two and I can’t help smiling back.
Arriving in Rajasthan, the thermometer is pushing 44 degrees Celsius, not the most enjoyable heat to go hunting vintage pieces for Smith and Stocking. A few contacts scribbled down, a trustee rickshaw driver found, camera under my arm and the search begins.
A few days later, one contact leading to another, I am now fast running out of available budget. With so many amazing vintage, antique, mid century pieces I just want to buy everything. How will I ever choose? How will I prioritise? A sophisticated excel with a weighted scoring system? I anguish selfishly over this rather delectable dilemma as I walk back to the hotel. On route, a man stops me to feverishly shake my hand and make my acquaintance. He enquires about my business and when I tell him, he immediately takes me to meet his brother who has some valuable hard to find contacts!
I try not to think of my mother’s reaction as I am whisked through the busy streets on the back of this guys bike, someone I met just a moment ago. The afternoon sun beats down, the dust rises from the streets and I think this is living.
The lengths we to go to, to find that one special piece that makes your heart sing and your head be overruled. Forget the excel, I decided.