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Some people say ,'Shah Rukh, you work so hard. Why don't you sit back with a glass of red wine or go out on the terrace for a smoke?' But that's not me.
One of the privileges of the great is to witness catastrophes from a terrace.
There was a time in my life when I was going in and out of houses that were extraordinarily different - from a working-class terrace in Northampton to the homes of friends who were really very wealthy. It was quite an odd position to be in, I realise looking back, and quite a nice one.
At home in Ghaziabad, everyone is a pure vegetarian. In fact, when I want to cook non-veg there, my mum shoos me out on the terrace where I have my cooking utensils. I'm told categorically that whatever non-veg or egg, etc., that I have to cook, I should do upstairs and not enter her kitchen at all.
But Portugal has a peaceful feel about it. I sit on the terrace overlooking the vineyard there and I feel cut off from the world. You need that sort of thing.
When I see a slippery slope, my instinct is to build a terrace.
I enjoy passing time in my house. I'll get up, head out on the terrace, think about what to do, fool around oiling the floorboards or hanging pictures askew.
I like to sit down, relax, have a cup of coffee on the terrace and read a book. I like to travel the world - and I'm lucky to see so much through cycling.
They look outside the windows of their apartment in town and realize they're not living in a terrace anymore. This is a room full of dreamers who like to go to London for a day.
In the two-room flat where I live in Japan, I try to take time every day to step away from the bombardment of e-mails and opportunities and papers around my desk, for an hour, and just sit on our 30-inch terrace in the sun, reading something sustaining, whether 'The Age of Innocence' or the latest by Colm Toibin.
I grew up playing with kids from Hurt Village, playing with kids from other housing projects, Lamar Terrace, because my grandmother lived in that particular area. So, I always wondered how I would have turned out if I would have lived in that particular given circumstance.
When you do movies on low budgets, you don't want to have a location that requires a very big light right outside the window when you're 10 stories up. You have to find a location where you have a terrace outside, or you can light from a second floor, or you can light through the windows for daylight.
Coming eyeball to eyeball with a hummingbird on my terrace is as exciting to me as any celebrity I've met as a result of 'Downton Abbey.'
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