Saturday, January 25, 2014

THE WONDER WINTER TALE

YES MOM!! am coming in a minute please. I remember those are some of the most common words i say while playing with my neighborhood friends and never wanted to surrender. The evening golden sun rays steadily descend behind the village mountain and soon realize that its all dark and finally time for us to part and go home. From the distance, i can see my mother's busy burning the fire woods and waiting for all her children to come back. The banquet she always lavishly lay in the table for her family is one of her weaknesses. Dad's busy for the Sunday sermon. He always comes to me for one thing: GUESS?? To borrow some old jokes and stories to narrate in between his Sunday sermon.Ya'll... you never know how i use to be so proud of myself for that particular reason. Dad always call up from home even today (believe it or not) for that. Love you dad. Our winter evening couldn't get better as we close the day with stories about many Naga (Tribe from Northeast India) legends and fairies narrated by my uncle who live just next door. He often pay us visit and really wouldn't mind narrating such lovely stories for some foot massage in exchange from us all. Such are the memories we create with our loved ones. Many winters gone, i still feel the same urge in my bones...Am glad that somehow this winter, i was able to create some memories with my loved ones and that helped me cherished the old ones. This are some of the pictorial memories. Life is really too short not to do something you really really love doing. Don'tcha? Hope you guys enjoy scrolling down...!   
Way to beat the chilly winter ( caught many attention since the time of knitting to wearing hahaha) No complains!

Time for the yummy plum cakes

This is a typical North Indian Rural CHIMES (popularly found in Rajasthan/Haryana areas) I just simply love the simplicity of this and the color pattern that is knitted.
Me, my boots & the horses 
 In a very untraditional way, the arrival of this winter was heartily welcomed in some " cowboy style"!

Celebrated boss's birthday on 21st Dec with some dark chocolate truffles ( finger licking)  




Nothing beats PORK (marinated with home made sauce overnight and seasoned with fresh herbs and Chef's secret ingredients) 

 King Chilly and Onion (shallots) ( best way to accelerate your appetite and heat up  the temperature of your palate)
Typical Naga Chutney ( i can still smell the aroma)
Unique Naga cuisine ( beef intestine with fresh green mustard leaves and beans) 

Tired and not in the mood to step into kitchen? The good news is.... just grab some carrot, beetroot and cabbage ( for flavor, use curry leaves, mustard seeds and some green chilies if you want)... very easy, light and very  refreshing ( avoid coffee sometimes and made such lovely energy booster)...
Sweet dish replaced by pomegranate
God's goodness and togetherness (3rd wed anniv)....
The songs of springtime is in the flowers and birds, the songs of winter is in the friendship and the table you shared...Long Live ''the wonder winter tale" .... 

Friday, November 15, 2013

MUSSOORIE REVISITED


It was so refreshing to climb the mountain and revisit the town i consider one of the best coziest in the world. Mussoorie located in the foothill of (Himalayas) Uttarakhand state in India always refreshes you with unending stories to share... Though it was getting cold by now, it was fun sipping coffee and watching the breath stealing sunset... Here's some of the pictures i've taken ( to share with you all)... Hope you enjoy it....

Mussoorie view from Landour (from the woods) 

View of the Himalayan range from the famous Mussoorie sister bazaar

The Pines

Veiw from Himalaya torch bearers campus (located at the foothill of Mussoorie)

View of dehradun after the sunset

Mussoorie and the breath stealing sunset moment

Creeps and the dawn of darkness
Nature's beauty redefined

Colors to the land


Local vegetables (fresh and organic)

Fresh vegetables and fruits ( so tempting for me to buy and cook them)
Bump into a cozy coffee cafe ( spectacular list)

That yellow umbrella lady was standing near old church near sister bazaar at Landour (mussoorie)...

WOW bloody though

For all those James Dean and Elvis fans....

Hollyhood and Coffee (so much to offer)
hey Guys...meet my friend Persis.... (we had a blast)..
Hello Mr, How are you? Fine Thanks ( someone came up to our friend Marty and said that while he was in Delhi)

Marilyn Monroe coming alive




This handsome men agreed to take a picture ( Ideal men of Mussoorie)
The Quotes are such FOOD for THOUGHT STUFF ( Keeping our surrounding and mind clean)

The smoky mussoorie early evening
Whenever you're in Mussoorie, dont forget to have your breakfast from this Lovely Omelette Center (located just before walking down the Picture palace area)



Walking down the sister bazaar areas (the streets quite clean and undisturb... you can always have a beautiful stroll and discuss anything under the sun without any interruption)...

 


I totally agree to what Rene Descartes says... Travelling is almost like talking with those of other centuries... You're reminded how you're part of that vast beautiful history where many beautiful people have walked and are walking and will walk....




Thursday, October 10, 2013

THE KOCHI DIARY ( Extracted from one of my diary page)



Ernakulum also known as Kochi (MAPcourtesy inter
It was one of the most unexpectedly exciting travels I had ever had in recent time. As I’ve always confess profusely earlier too that travel always bring a lot of fresh energy and does refreshes my perspective. This particular travel was a unique one because I was able to attend my sis in-law’s wedding and witness mush love from the people and community. Such experience brings a lot of possibilities of healing and pure joy. It was overwhelming to see how the adorable bride and the groom are so much in love and are so happy for each other. Hey… sounds familiar? Am sure some of us have gone through the same experience too… So folks, this is my travel story…called THE KOCHI DIARY...

TRAVEL FROM NEW DELHI TO KOCHI BY FLIGHT
We took the Go Air flight from New Delhi airport. Reached Mumbai airport (via) at 4:15pm after started from Delhi by 2:30pm and finally reached Kochi by 6:30pm. It was dusky by then. Our friend called Caleb was really kind enough to come and pick us up from the airport. He’s such a gentlemen. He was equally as excited as us because he said it’s his best friend’s wedding. He not only drove us to our destination but also brief us about Kochi and some of the interesting stories about him and his circle of friends including the groom. It took us an hour and a half to reach our destination… we crosses some forest and some sleepy towns. Though physically exhausted, I was so thrilled to be back to the woods and as the raindrops touches the roof of our cute little car, I realize then that this is my day (this is my moment)… I requested Caleb and my Husband to please stop the car… I open the door and bared my soul as I step out. Sounds crazy but it was so accomplishing and am so proud of myself that I did that (sound of laughter as I write this).

PEOPLE IN KOCHI
Having come from cities like Delhi, it was such a calming experience to see how the people and community as a whole in Kochi are as compared to Delhi. No doubt for some really really weird reason I will always love Delhi as my first love but Kochi came as a heart stealer ( you know what I mean?)… The visit really slowed me down and helps me walk instead of rushing. The simplicity of the people and the serenity of the hills and the sound of the waves surely validated the saying “God’s own country”.
KERALA AYURVEDIC MASSAGE (one thing unmissable while in Kerala)
The rich oil lavishly poured and the smooth hands that run through your weary bones and joints were something one has to experience personally. I had a full body massage and most exciting part is this…  Uncle Thomas discounted the price. That was a huge relieves (hahaha).
SEA AND THE SEA FOOD
Yes that’s right…its sea and the sea food. Walking down the beach and listening to the sound of the waves rushing was a treat in itself. My husband (my travel partner who’s my travel critic too hahaha) and I went to CHERAI beach. The beach is lined by gorgeous coconut groves and eats out places. Though it was a humble and simple beach, we had a perfect view of the beach from the hotel called the Arabian Sea Food Hotel where we had our lunch. The menu ranges from juicy prawns, tender squid, aromatic pomfret fish and the Kerala samber, coconut shredded mixed vegetable and not the least the Kerala RICE. Generally the dishes are flavoured with tamarind added with refreshing curry leaves and coconut and don’t be surprise if your dinner is served up on a banana leaf.
Cherai beach walk

Cherai beach waves
Way to Cherai Beach

Once a naughty always a naughty (boys will always be boys)
Exotic cuisine with a dash of lemon juice



I told you " IT HAD THE PERFECT VIEW"


















































A VISIT TO THE CHINESE FISHING NET AREA
For one second, I feel I was embodying the famous Kylie Kwong while visiting the fishermen community there. She’s such an inspiration for any chef in the world. I do claim myself to be one (I mean a private practitioner though)… The Chinese fishing net story in Kochi (earlier known as Cochin) traces back to the time where the traders from the court of the Chinese ruler (forgot the name sorry) introduced these nets here. Surprisingly, these nets are found only in Kochi, outside China (seriously?). Met many fishermen. Well it definitely smell very fishy and definitely do not intend to say that it’s stinky but it’s stinky actually (No offence).
Chinese Fishing Nets

Time to pull out

The catch






HILL PALACE (TRIPUNITHURA)
Outer view of the Palace turn Museum
Built somewhere in 19th century by the Raja of Kochi, this palace served as the seat of the Raja of the Kochi province. The palace is now converted into a rich museum preserved and collected from different parts of the world and gifts given by different nobles and traders as well. Well, the worst part was “NO CAMERAS inside”. So we couldn’t take any pictures inside. If you’re someone who loves to see antiques and have interest in wooden crafting work, this interesting palace turn museum is definitely your next destination. No sandals inside too, but am just ok with that because the floors are made of woods and it’s neatly polished. Infact the cracky wooden sound when you walk makes the entrance quite a homecoming.  
  
 MARINE DRIVE VIEW
 Heard a stroll along the long tree-lined coastal pathway that lines the backwater is well worth the time spent, especially late afternoon or dusk but couldn’t go there. So I just caught the street through my canon camera as I was on way to Vypeen Island. Am so sure that the bustling backwaters, dotted with fishing boats, speedboats, ships, tankers and passenger boats, can be observed from my boat.

VYPEEN ISLAND
To start off the visit, had a simple yet refreshing lunch at one of the small hotel there. The island looks like a little palm size globe altogether. We walk pass many tourist and many from the west. The spice market was amazing. Thank God, I bought the fish masala and some vegetable masalas from one of the shops there. This beautiful couple were selling those herbs and spices; they are so good to talk with that they nearly robbed off my purse by pushing me to buy many other herbs too. But God send a policemen called my husband who brought me back to sense… otherwise I thought of buying the whole shop (another laughter)…
On the left located the old Synagogue (not seen in this foto)

Had lunch here for Rs 65 ( Rice, Indian Bread, Mixed veg, Pickles, two types of Fish)

They have some of the best spices in the world i bet...


TRAVELLING BACK FROM KOCHI BY TRAIN (DURONTO)  

If anyone wants to know more about the people and society of the eastern part of the world like India, you MUST travel by train (sleeper class) at least once. I met some few travellers and every time we broke into conversation, we realize how diverse are we yet how we all aspire and are inspired each other’s culture and thinking.
Nearly twisted my ribs taking this shot (oops)
Our train for obvious reason started off from the Ernakulum junction (Kochi) and crosses some of the most interesting locations such as Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, UP and finally Delhi. It was double the treat because when you look out, you see crossing different geographical locations and see how each community are so different from the other. In the case of Rajasthan, I was personally intrigued to notice how the typical Rajasthani colourful turbans were flaunt around by men even in the station area. I wasn’t really sure which particular station was that but I just knew it for sure that “oh boy this is Rajasthan”… One can also see different classes of the community earning their livings. 

View of the travellers waiting for their train
Up against the wind
harvest time People
Rain drops
Paddies dried in the sun
I hate my husband for taking this foto while i was sleeping but i never love him less...

After all, cheers to the wedded couple who invited us to Kochi... Cheers to their union and as they embark a new journey and those unforgettable memories me and my loved one created together. Thank you for dropping in...