When this post goes up The Lovely Anna and I should be somewhere in the air on our 22 hour travel marathon back to Minnesota after a wonderful stay in New Delhi, India. We get back later today and then we’ll see how long it takes to recover from the jet lag.
Our time in India was a lot of fun. Many thanks to the folks from Comic Con India who invited me to be a guest at the Delhi Comic Con. Having been to many cons in the U.S. I would say the one I experienced in Delhi has a similar vibe… crowded with many really enthusiastic fans and cosplay galore. They love their comics in Delhi.
An Indian comic book publisher called Gotham Comics published their own issues of MAD on and off for a few years between 1998 and 2004 (only U.S. material as far as I could tell), but other than that the only source of the magazine here has been the secondary market until the digital version. So, not that many people really knew about MAD. However I did have a couple of dozen people come up with copies of both Indian and U.S. editions to have me sign, and a number of the comics artists and cartoonists that had tables in artist’s alley came up to introduce themselves and say they follow and love the magazine.
I did a presentation on the big stage, but fortunately despite most audience members not knowing what MAD was they recognized the movie and TV shows I showed my art of the parodies from, and we got some laughs.
And yes, the convention was outdoors like a fair. That was a little bit of a problems as this was a typical weather forecast for Delhi:
That’s right… current conditions are “smoke”. Delhi has a big pollution problem. It’s the third most populated city in the world after Tokyo and Jakarta, but it by far the most polluted in terms of air quality and those problems has been exacerbated by weather patterns lately. Anna struggled with her asthma at times with the convention happening outdoors. Hopefully the government here takes some steps to improve air conditions for its citizens. It didn’t stop us from greatly enjoying ourselves though.
We had plenty of time to see some sights, including a trip down to Agra to see the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and other sites.
One of my missions on this trip was to visit as many “Sherlock” sites as time allowed, and I got to get one in while in Agra! The Agra Fort is a gigantic Mughal Dynasty fort/palace completed in 1573 and as such has a long history as an imperial residence and war time fort, among other things. It’s significant in the Holmesian world as the site of the backstory of main antagonist Jonathan Small in “The Sign of the Four”, the second Holmes story and one of only four novel length tales.
Back to the comic con, my fellow con guests, French graphic novelist Nicolas Wild and long-time comics writer Joe Harris did several press interviews for both TV and print. The convention got quite a bit of local press.
There was even a Wacom booth!:
We did and saw a lot more than I will share here, including many sites in Delhi and, of course, the FOOD! Now I will have to find some good Indian restaurants in Minneapolis (are there any?) after having experienced what the locals call “proper” Indian cuisine here.
This one one of my favorite dishes here… Gosht is a minced lamb and the rara preparation includes larger pieces of mutton as well. Punjabi style is a northern type of Indian cooking. It was only mildly spicy but tremendously flavorful.
Now I will be paying the price for such an extended trip away. I figure I’ll surface for air sometime in early 2017.
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