I’m glad I ended up packing a set of Indian clothes in my already overflowing luggage (thanks mum for reminding me to); because BINDI, organised by Sanskriti: The South Asian Society, gave me the chance to put them to use. After a long week of lectures and tutorials, what better way to welcome the weekend than with a night of Desi hits and the pulsating beat of the dhol ?

After reading on the event’s Facebook page that it was sold-out, the bar had definitely been set higher than I initially expected. Nevertheless, as my friend and I made our way through the chilly October evening to get to the event, my only thought was: ‘This walk in the cold had better be worth it.’

Worth it, it was. If the ambience inside was warm, the dance floor was irrefutably scorching at the height of the party. “It only gets better as the night progresses” is definitely the best way to sum up BINDI.

When I first arrived, the dance floor was sparsely populated with a grand total of four people. However, it was fascinating to watch them bust their moves with such vigour – they were the life of the party, especially since DJ Harri was playing Punjabi Bhangra music!

By about 10:30pm, more partygoers started arriving in groups, livening the atmosphere bit by bit. By the time the clock struck midnight, the dance floor was packed with Desis and non-Desis alike, busting moves captured on Bollywood silver screens. Dancers were audacious, bold and it was great to see how far and wide Indian culture has traversed.

This rise in Bollywood’s popularity was evident through the outfits worn. Most wore clothes of South Asian and African origin, keeping with a smart casual dress code that is the norm for most St Andrews events. But what was even more eye-catching was the onslaught of colour at the event – from the lighting to the outfits to the drinks; it was like walking through a rainbow.

Highlights of the night included an impromptu train formed by dancers around the dance floor (by that point in the evening, everyone was buzzed and in the mood to join in), as well as hits from Bollywood movies that almost everyone – myself included – knew! It reminded me of home and all the fun times I had dancing to Bollywood music with my friends; a sensation I’m sure most Indians in the room could say they related to!

It’s events like BINDI that make St Andrews feel like a home away from home. Touted by several people I talked to on the night as “the best event of the social calendar”, BINDI was definitely a hit with all those who were lucky enough to snag a ticket.

All in all, I would say it was worth the walk in the cold, for any chill I felt was long forgotten by the nightlong hangama and Bollywood dhamaka. I eagerly await Sanskriti’s Sitara* fashion show, and any subsequent events that may follow…

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