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    Another year has gone by, working with the awesome team at Indulge as I enjoy a ringside view of all the action in the city. Each year has its highlights, trends and popular faces, but all in all I’ve discovered that Chennai has its own unique way of doing things. Here are my top picks:

    Brunch
    Never has the term ‘brunch’ been more freely interpreted, especially with regards to timing. What’s there to interpret, you might ask. Brunch is breakfast meets lunch, right? For the uninitiated, maybe. Here, it has come to mean an event that can start as early as noon and go on till 2 am the following day. I kid you not! Which raises the question, when is the appropriate time to get there. Because, let’s face it, even the fittest of us all wouldn’t be able to endure a 10-hour party. This leads me to my next point.

    Multiple bookings
    When timings are left open-ended (in Chennai, you don’t really have a choice as a host), the time one arrives at a party depends on whether it’s the first or the last stop of the evening. We’ve all heard people say, “I’ll go ‘show face’ at a dinner and then come to yours.” The question is, are you ‘showing face’ or staying put for the night?

    RSVP. What’s that?
    One more variable to throw into the mix is the fact that pretty much no one ever RSVPs. Yes, those tiny four letters at the bottom of an invite with a phone number next to it. So the host usually doesn’t know for sure who is coming, when, or how many. I’ve had someone say to me once, “Oh, anywhere between 50 to a 100!”

    Runway fever
    Never has the fashion show been more in the spotlight than in the last couple of years. Everything from restaurant launches—complete with models showing off platters of food—to the launch of a data storage brand—where they took to the runway holding aloft hard drives—these are taking the top spot as the entertainment of choice.

    Celebrities turn guests of honour
    And, of course, no event is complete without the presence of a Kollywood or Bollywood star, as the guest of honour—the final stamp of approval that an event is worth attending. Sure to follow are a slew of selfies with said celebrity popping up everywhere the next day.

    Paloma Rao

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