You must experience the Udaipur Tales Story Telling Festival, “Udaipur Tales” mooted by the super sassy Sushmita and the Sauve Salil was held at the Park Exotica resort this year. Three days of story-telling, shopping, gourmet food, and festivities. An enthusiastic footfall of children and adults made this storytelling fest successful. Storytellers enthused the about 2000/2500 children every morning with tales of the yore, folklore, fantasy and fables. Artisans from various parts of India covered the shopping stalls with different wares right from Maheshwari sarees to Kashmiri carpets, from a variety of pickles from MP to Rajasthani jutis, from weaves of Kolkata to handmade dolls. New age writers launching their book livened the atmosphere with their interaction with the crowd.
I had gone there to launch Durriya Kapasi’s book, “Neverfound land”…….. and here I discovered another. Udaipur, known as the city of Lakes has more than just that. Historically rich, artistically abundant, flourishing in its canvas of nature’s beauty. It is a gem that is gradually being discovered by the tourists both international and Indian. With over 180 hotels, as winter approaches it starts to feel the lack of more. I stayed at the Lalit, a heritage property, lake-facing with the most astounding view. The vibrant colors of the setting sun that made the sky their canvas was a spectacle to wish that that moment froze in time. It was difficult to tear myself away from the window.
As we drove to the Park Exotica resort, we left the city behind and the gentle climb to the hills registered a drop in temperature. I wrapped the shawl around me enjoying the chill after the summer heat in Mumbai. We spent a lot of time rummaging through the various shopping stalls, enjoying the fresh bhajis from the stalls with our masala chai. The second half of the day saw mostly young adults, enjoying this experience and also waiting for the happy hours to start where they could enjoy a drink around the bonfires lit at various intervals. The evening session differed each day, where a conglomeration of different artists would entertain and showcase their talent. That evening there was a mix of story-telling in different genres and a band of jazz. Time seemed to fly by as I enjoyed the revelry around me and I knew this would be a tale that I would carry back home.