“Holiday is a time to be yourself”, says Savitha Sastry, a Bharatnatyam exponent. And we couldn’t agree more. But let’s dig deep and get to know more about this beautiful woman’s last holiday trip.
Q: Where did you go on your latest trip?
Savitha Sastry: A holiday is a chance to rejuvenate and recharge. I particularly enjoy visiting places with history and natural beauty. My last trip was to Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.
Q: Who accompanied you on this trip?
Savitha Sastry: I went there with my husband (leaving the children behind!).
Q: Where did you stay?
Savitha Sastry: We stayed in Fort Rajwada.
Q: Did you meet any interesting people?
Savitha Sastry: One evening, we took a camel ride to watch the sunset over the sand dunes followed by a folk music and dance performance in a rustic setting under the desert sky. At one point, the dancers called on the audience to join with them. When they discovered that I was a dancer myself, albeit Southern classical, I was requested to perform while they played the music. It resulted in seven minutes of Bharatnatyam danced to Rajasthani percussion. An interesting jugalbandi indeed and well appreciated by the audience.
Q: Can you suggest some shopping spots in Jaisalmer?
Savitha Sastry: Our local driver extolled the quality of silver jewellery sold in Jaisalmer, and we landed up at the haveli of a silver merchant. He had us sit on a diwan in a private room and emptied his entire ware of silver earrings and ethnic jewellery on the floor and left us to choose from it!
Q: Do you have any sightseeing recommendations?
Savitha Sastry: Jaisalmer feels like two hundred years of history living with the present. The Jaisalmer fort is not to be missed as are the havelis. A trip to the sand dunes is also well worth it.
Q: Can you give our readers some travel tips?
Savitha Sastry: If you are going by road, try to make the journey from Jodhpur or Bikaner by daylight. The road is desolate for the most part, and we saw several car wreckages.
Q: What have you learnt from travelling?
Savitha Sastry: I’ve learnt perfection and grace from the beautiful sculptures in the temples of South India. And I’ve been inspired to inculcate it in my performances.
Q: Which place would you really like to visit?
Savitha Sastry: In India, Odisha for its temples, Kutch for its unique landscape, and the seven sisters of the Northeast for their virgin beauty. Abroad, I would like to see the midnight sun at Norway, and someday perform Bharatnatyam at the Colosseum in Rome.