BOMBAY, 1949. A sultry June evening. Lights glow golden. Candles flicker in the warm breeze that arrives gently through the large open windows of the café.
Crisp and organised, Roda Irani leads her daughter through the narrow gullies of Swadeshi Market. “Come, let us get to the café.”
It is a hazy November morning and it is already warm. The roads are thronged with bullock carts, cycles and pedestrians.
It is a close and heavy monsoon night on Marine Lines. Despite the weather, there is a jostling of people outside the Bombay Roxy.
BOMBAY, MARCH 1923. Botanist, ecologist, and all-round man of the people Patrick Geddes reclines on a long-armed rattan chair.
November. 1967. Heathrow airport. A young man leans against the Oceanic terminal’s high windows, waiting for the final call for BOAC flight 774 to Bombay.
One January morning in 1928, a young Irani – not long arrived in Bombay – was waiting to collect a parcel at Victoria Terminus. Unusually, the train was running late...
One day, an eccentric old Irani Café (born circa 1930, Bombay), creaking slightly at the seams, made the long trip from Bombay in 1970 to London in 2012. Tired from the long journey, it shuffled into an empty space in Shoreditch and made itself comfortable.