Fish mouth, fish eyes

I met Vyjanti once when a web portal was officially launched in Amsterdam for Indians in the Netherlands. The mayors of Amsterdam and Amstelveen were present. So was the minister for immigration, who made it (despite a traffic jam) from Den Haag to Amsterdam. She made it clear to the audience that Indians, and especially the well heeled ones, like those gathered at that prime location that evening, are welcome in the Netherlands. Rules are being relaxed for them. They are, amongst others, the latest, most important immigrants to arrive here as ‘knowledge migrants’.

But this is old news.

Here’s more recent news.

At that time, more than two years ago, Vyjanti told me she was working for ‘’. So when I saw her on stage dancing with her students to Bollywood songs in Amstelveen during the Diwali celebration on 3rd November 2012, I was …well….surprised.

Vyjanti had started a Bollywood dance school. Most of Vyjanti’s students who performed that day haven’t grown up in India. I’ll tell you how I know. They haven’t got the whole act (yet). The greatest expertise in hip, boob and belly shaking are flavourless without fish mouth, fish eyes.

What is that?

  • open and close your mouth like a fish when it is breathing
  • make it look seductive, not ridiculous
  • do this with your fish eyes at the same moment as fish mouth
  •  make your eyeballs float from one to the other end of your eyes while your mouth opens and closes like …well, a fish
  • at the same time, move your head to the same side – just a teeny, weeny bit, and your eyebrows up and down
  • this should make men dizzy with pleasure (and women jealous)

When the round of dancing was over and folks had captured all these beautiful dancing, moving and shaking ladies onto their recording devices for future pleasure, I went over to meet Vyjanti. I demonstrated fish eyes, fish mouth to her (not that she needed any help from me) and said…until your students have mastered (mistressed???) this…they shouldn’t get a certificate from your dance school.

She agreed.


(For those who missed the performance, here it is:

2 thoughts on “Fish mouth, fish eyes

  1. IMHO, your article is very subjective. Most of us (the “students”) have been dancing since few months only and that also for fun (when we get time) as most of us are highly skilled expats working here. Your points would be valid if someone wants to take up bollywood dancing on a more professional level like “getting a certification”. So why do we need to bother about “Fish eyes and fish balls” when people are happy at the end.


  2. Dear Radha,
    I am one of the people who is happy you are dancing to Bollywood. I enjoyed your performance. Thanks! And yes, my article is subjective. You don’t need to bother about ‘fish eyes fish balls’ ( as you say). However I do think makes the whole thing more authentic, and yes two months with a busy job is not enough time for it. When you do have the time, it will be fun ( I think) to add it to your dancing skills.
    Best wishes,


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