Monday, March 3, 2008

Show me the money

Its one thirty in the morning, im sitting at home sipping on the last of some lovely cherry vodka from Poland courtesy my friend Michel, wondering why im sitting here at home by myself on a Saturday night and not at Pmatka filling the place with 100 party deprived Hyderabadies. Words, keep repeating themselves in my head over and over again. “Don’t promote this place as an after-party place sudeip” “It’s too much of a risk sudeip”. He’s probably right I tell myself, but what business isn’t a risk goddammit. I put my heart into the place and I want this place to make money and be successful so you need to understand that it kills me to switch my phone off not wanting to take another call and explain to another guest willing to spend anywhere between 3-5 grand that the place shut at 11:30 when we could have easily run it till 4 in the morning.

There’s no extent to the risk I would take to ensure a place does well. I’ve had a bottle broken on my head only to put it behind me and come back for another Saturday night albeit bruised but a little wiser. But then again, for countless reasons I fail to understand, there are times where your hands are just tied too tight and you have to restrain your emotions. I’d promised myself after my last experience with being part of a restaurant, not to get into the same situation again. But here I am again.

I knew 4 people when I first arrived to Hyderabad, all of whom studied with me in school. But I told myself that everybody here would know me in a year. 6 months on and there are probably very few people who party that don’t know where Pmatka is. I cant be blamed for where its located, and the fact that its not a regular party destination but when u see an opportunity, albeit a risky one to promote a place that’s open till 5 in the morning when everything around you shuts at 12, you don’t let it pass by you, you grab it and squeeze all you can out of it.

I agree that it’s not something you can keep doing, primarily because it invites the wrath of other club owners who also would want to keep their establishment open till the wee hours of the morning. But here we are, unknowns in a city with established local restaurateurs doing something very few other people dare to do. Its funny when people walk up and ask what political connections we have or if it’s a cop that’s running the place and they are pleasantly surprised to find people with no influence whatsoever doing something as risky as this. I would do this for as long as it takes, but then again….its not really in my hands now is it.

Free publicity is something that you would never want to turn down. From some of the best Dj’s in the country sitting by your bar at 2 in the morning requesting you to let them play, to some of the south’s finest actors and models dancing on your floor with the crowd all looking on whispering….THIS PLACE ROCKS!!! All I can say is that it’s immensely gratifying to head home early the next day and sleep with a smile knowing you had another successful night only wondering when this run would end. Well ladies and gentlemen, it just probably has. There’s always another place looking to pick up what we leave behind, and the party animal is always on the prowl for that other place that is going to satisfy his hunger for dance, drink and make merry. Its time I need to step back and head home. It’s probably just temporary anyways and a good thing we stopped the after party before something really serious happened anyway. But I guess only time will tell. I would love to be proved wrong and walk into the place at 3 in the afternoon to find people waiting outside desperate to get in, or have to shut the gates at 10 on a Saturday evening because I cant accommodate any more people. I would probably be at my happiest. But till that time, all I can say is that I wish I knew how much longer I’d have been able to pull this off. I’m leaving this city with fond memories and new found friendships. Home is where the heart is, and this city isn’t quite home yet. Goodnight Hyderabad. I’ll be back to take you on again…..

“Lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones and I will try to fix you”…not really relevant, but it’s the ending of a song I was just listening to.

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