(to learn more about Shekhar Sen visit www.shekharsen.com )
When Shekharji first emailed me to inform me about his visit with family to Music City Nashville, I felt fortunate he considered being my guest for three days.
The last weekend in May 2009 was very pleasant. The weather was in our favor and the company was fabulous. Very talented artist Shree Shekharji and his family made my weekend unforgettable. I wanted to share his joyful company with friends but did not want to intrude on his family time by organizing an official event that would take time away from his vacation. Instead, I had a casual get together shortly after his arrival Friday evening. Barbara Jackson (author of “Rama the Legend”) and my dear friend Marion Sherwood (who has exceptional interest in Eastern Values, Culture and Language) attended. The atmosphere became very spiritual as everyone converse about the world, our place in the world and how we can make it better. One of the key concepts discussed was how we all are connected and every small action we take leads to greater affect that we seem unable to comprehend. We discussed how being aware of this connection forces us to think about our actions and its affect on our surroundings. It was indeed an insightful evening.
Next day, my daughter, nephew and Shekarji’s wife and son took a little road trip to Chattanooga, TN. We visited Rock City and Incline Railway etc. The highlight of this short road trip was playing antaaxari with Shekharji and his wife Swetaji. After first round, we discovered Swetaji carried a beautiful voice. We all were so inspired to sing with their harmonious tune that for few brief minutes we forgot how discordant we can be. After a long tiring day and heavy dinner in Chattanooga, I was certain everyone would sleep the entire drive back home but Shekharji and family were so considerate as to stay awake and sang songs and shared stories. We reached home in no time around midnight. We all stepped out of the car rejuvenated because we had very much enjoyed the singing.
On Sunday we took another 90 minute road trip to Kentucky and visited Mammoth Cave. We stayed for the beautiful sunset over the green river. During the three hours spent visiting the caves, Shekharji shared his talent of impersonation. We laughed and laughed ‘till tears were flowing down our cheeks. I was very impressed with his down to earth nature. I assumed he would keep to him self as a typical egotistic celebrity would. Instead, he engaged in casual conversation and honored us with his singing the entire weekend.
The day of his departure, Monday Morning, he liven the house with Gujarati songs. It was the best way to start my week. I closed my eyes, widen my ears, opened my heart and just took it all in. As Shekharji sang songs, I felt like I was one of the lyrics floating in air. I was impressed that a Bengali artist can do such great justice to some of my favorite Gujarati songs. It was one of a kind, rare, once in a life time experience. I felt he thought high of the Gujarati Culture. My husband Pratap also joined Shekharji. Pratap felt so honored to be singing in presence of such gifted artist. The singing jubilee came to close with sweet performance from Swetaji.
Both Shekarji and Swetaji invited us to their home in Mumbai. I found Swetaji to be very humble. She expressed her talent in cooking and offered us great hospitality when we visit her in Mumbai. Later that same week, I was scheduled to fly to India for indefinite period of time. Preparing for my departure demanded my time and attention and hindered me from preparing for this celebrity visit. I wish I could have offered better hospitality they deserved. I was impressed with their simple and amiable nature. I will always remember their visit.
Thank you Shekharji and Swetaji for sharing your time and talent, Thank you for gracing us with your presence. Please convey our love and blessing to son Sourabh.