I have always enjoyed baking breads. I have failed too at my early attempts and realised everything in life, needs practice, consistency and then you are ready to go.
Bread baking especially, needs several attempts – cause the flour type, water, weather temperature etc and various factors can result differently if you follow a certain recipe. Of course, the base, outline needs to be followed but then it can or cannot yield accurate results. Hence we need to practice with our ingredients and factors to get it right to our desired satisfaction. And the aroma of a freshly baked bread at home, is priceless.
I have tried making milk buns, which are such a good hit, soft, chewy like mumbai Paavs. And then this Foccacia, with toppings that are so easy to put together, and that a variety.
I have used a regular pizza dough – but for focaccia, it needs more water and a longer period of proofing for a real good taste. Overnight in the fridge works the bestest.
And I swear by Jamie’s pizza dough – that just works perfect for me, of course I alter the water based on the flour type I use. With dinkel/spelt flour, it needs different moisture and flour mixes too.
Do you like to make and break your own breads too? 🙂 And by the way this goes so good with a pesto that I make. Will share the garden pesto recipe someday.
The beautiful edible wild flowers. I am discovering these yet, and have successfully used the dandellions to make honey, syrup etc.
Bright purple colored beauties … but i think these are not edible. Please enlighten me with its name if you know.
These pretty little daisies always wins my heart,… and of course these are edible too.
A throwback to our two weeks back, mini vacation. We went to the Alps!! And what a beauty. I love the beauty of beaches and mountains both, but if I have to pick between the two – it has to be perhaps the mountains. I don’t know why? But the magnanimity and its splendid beauty arrests my mind.
We breathed in fresh air, hiked in the mountains and ate organic food. Was so relaxing.
And opening the windows to this view, will remain with me forever, as I photographed this as a memory keeper!!
The weather is slowly changing, bringing in lots of rain, low temperature and the slow onset of autumn, which also means summer is coming to an end, soon!! Sigh!
And such weather calls for warm and comforting food. And who wouldn’t love a bowl of pasta in white sauce? Especially, served with loads of sautéed and caramelised mushroom in butter, pepper, salt and loaded with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Pure divine, I can tell you!!
And it’s so simple to make.
– Boil the pasta of your choice and in the meanwhile you can prepare the white sauce
– The key to a white sauce is loads of butter just so that the flour you will add mixes in well, this prevents from forming lumps. Of course this is heavy on calories but you can always have portion control 🙂 No?
– As soon as the butter melts I add some minced garlic and stir fry just until it slightly begins to change the color
– Then I add nearly a good TBS of all purpose flour and stir constantly just until the raw smell of the flour is vanished
– Now it’s the turn to add milk, I add nearly a cup and a half for the two of us and constantly stir with the wooden spatula
– When it comes to a boil and begins to form a creamy consistency I add the herbs – fresh sprigs of basil, oregano, pepper, salt and sometimes crushed paprika.
– Reduce the heat to the least and add some grated mozzarella ( better is to remove the pot from heat and mix the cheese, otherwise the milk may split)
– Add some grated Parmesan too and you are done with the sauce ☺️
– While you are letting the sauce simmer, you can sauté the mushrooms in butter until well caramelised and serve hot – first the pasta, the sauce and the mushrooms 🍄 and do not forget more shaved Parmesan
P.S. I have always used the approximate quantity based on the portion I make, you may alter according to your taste and preferences
Summer is now in full swing and we are making the most of it by indulging in outdoor activities. And some days are excessively hot and humid but that doesn’t deter our spirit, and we went hiking into this forest in between two mountains and a flowing river. The river isn’t too deep except at some spots or curves.
“Raab” is the name of this river…. and you could almost see the water so clear.
The river is full of these pebbles and a beautiful butterfly was resting gracefully.
A clear sky and the rich colors of nature 😍
What you can see is pictures of the bank, but the hiking up and between the mountains was very steep and narrow but immensely adventurous. You must have hiking shoes and comfortable clothing to accomplish this. Normally takes 4 hours to complete one stretch! And good to carry some in between snacks/fruits to maintain good energy levels 😀
We spotted this lovely piece of bench – clearly handmade and I think we will have this custom made for our garden!!
These were tiny bridges to cross the mini streams.
After the sweet fragrant spring time, summer’s finally here!! And somehow I enjoy the summery days – warmth of the sun, azure sky, lazy afternoons, cherries and berries and the cheerful vibes everywhere!!
And what can I say… I love tea … even during summer 🤣!! Any season. And tea times for me is a celebration. Royal like.
Have a good weekend all you beautiful souls!!
When I soak chickpeas, I do soak quite a bit just so that I can make a few alternatives and they are all after boiling them of course – this is extremely helpful in planning and serving meals.
So first is always the Hummus which we love with an assortment of Salad sticks especially carrots, cucumbers or even sweet paprika or some call them red bell peppers 🙂
I make Pita breads at home, fresh and warm which is traditionally served with hummus.
Additionally I roast some vegetables in the oven with a mild olive oil, salt and pepper and fill them into the pita with some hummus and serve them as wraps – which is so easy if you are time pressed!
And finally my favorite – cholle chawal 🤣 – a little time consuming in chopping onions, sautéing the spices, etc but the end result is happiness 😄 Served with jeera rice, salad and yoghurt!!
I also keep a handful of boiled chickpeas aside for salads which is equally healthy, tangy and yummy especially with some boiled eggs and potatoes and lots of tomatoes, cucumber, rocket leaves, onion if you wish…and simple dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper!
Over the weekend, the weather was beautiful and we wanted to make the most of it… Saturday was a town trip while Sunday with everything closed … we decided to visit the nearby Animal world and we were not disappointed 🙂
Frankly I like the fact that birds should be set free and not caged but of course if they are well kept and safe from being eaten then… well… perhaps that’s for good! And they have an extra spacious outlet externally to feel and breathe the fresh air! Also because of the extreme temperature they are indoors at the moment!! They looked so adorable 🙂
If you can spot the leopards sitting and relaxing 😄
This animal world or zoo also has a nature park, a castle( which we skipped this time) so there’s abundance of natural beauty
This zoo has an exclusive area with domestic animals just so that children can pet the beings 🙂
These deers 💕
The place is quite picturesque and I think in spring/summer time, it’s going to look splendid with rich greenery and the surrounding hills! These pics are from my phone but my DSLR has better shots which I will share perhaps later!!
Have a great week ahead 🙂
These days I am slightly pressed with time and by the evening get extremely exhausted 💤… so easy peasy dinner ideas come to my rescue that doesn’t need much effort and turn out to be extremely delicious.
I had read somewhere about stuffed bell peppers and I had a few in my fridge along with some leftover mince which was cooked a night before with some onions, green peas and usual spices.
So I stuffed them with the mince (3/4 filling) and scrubbed the peppers with oil and shoved them in the oven, when half way through, I cracked in an egg and generously covered with grated mozzarella and Parmesan and baked for not more than 8 to 10 mins as I wanted the yolk to be semi cooked. And… and… and…..
it was so so delicious 😋 …. was gobbled up in sometime. I had served with salad.
Split open here 😊
We loved it. Will definitely make this again, only thing perhaps I need to take care is buy the bell peppers that can stand stable as otherwise cracking an egg might be a challenge 🤣
The whole cooking time took not more than 20 mins, if you already have the mince prepared and stored.
I really miss our home sometimes in bangalore, especially all the memories that will remain etched to my heart forever;
The swing that my husband assembled it personally … for me ❤️
Our lazy breakfasts or the breakfast we would have after our workout together
I loved the fact that our house was flooded with natural light and air- this is one thing we never compromise when we look for a home, lots of natural light and air.
The vase that I would arrange with flowers that accentuated our home with its sweet aroma…!
Our coffee and home made cake times in the evening and occasionally with our friends
2015 Christmas time with friends and several get-togethers and barbecues we hosted for friends
Our little garden, where we would occasionally have our breakfast feeling the gentle morning breeze. And how much I love bougainvillea
The terrace from one of our rooms….
And we’d always let the light and breeze seep in as much as it could
Some lazy days…or let’s say weekends
Our casual chats overlooking the greens. It would particularly look heaven during the rains…!
How little things matter so much in transforming the four walls that you can call your home, and sweet little memories that linger forever.
And life at the moment, another destination, which we are slowly and fondly transforming to call it our Home just where the heart belongs to 🙂
All you lovely people, I hope you had a great start to 2018 🙂
That’s quite true 😃… so people, be nice, be kind and yet stay grounded ☺️
Have a good rest of the week!!!
Autumn’s almost around. It’s raining, and slowly getting cold and of course the leaves are beginning to change its colours and shed.. Sighh!! Nevertheless, every season has its own charm. So this morning, the sight was quite like this, and the clouds are hanging in low…promising more rains.
As I sit down thinking about my next post, I could not resist sharing this super quick yummy lunch of multigrain toast with avocado mash, cheese, tomatoes, radish, fresh mozzarella and soft boiled eggs seasoned with salt and pepper…!!
I thought, this itself can be the post for the day so….here it is.
Oh yes…and we have a few more days to the weekend!! Especially this weekend, as we are away for a brief vacation to Slovenia 😉
Vienna isn’t too far. It’s just a drive away, and we wanted to explore a wee bit over the weekend especially, when Europe is beaming in sunshine and warmth. Austria, in general has plenty of rich natural beauty, especially the Alps…! Vienna, though it’s the capital is more flat and mostly a concrete jungle, but for someone who loves art, history and culture – this is a pure delight. Not much damaged post war, the old buildings and the cobbled path… speaks so much about the history – and all I could do, is walk around and gaze at the jaw-dropping beautiful architecture of castle, buildings, church etc
Danube river flowing happily. The edges you notice is not filth, but some sort of weed growing in the water, which is cleared almost every morning so that people could sail during summer. I hear, the river is frozen in winter.
We went just for a couple of days and wanted to go downtown and a few spots – the place was very crowded, clearly due to the weather it attracts plenty of tourists around this time. However, just this carriage could transport me to the by gone era…and all I could do is sigh deeply!!
That’s a church, just as it was in those days, and the restoration work was going on. Look at the intricate work of the artists.
And the contrast with the blue sky
Hofburg Palace and the running carriage
The statue and the passerby…
Wien has plenty of gorgeous cafe’s, especially by this weather it’s a real treat to enjoy with a hot mug of cappuccino
By the beautiful garden, at the schonbrunn palace on a cloudy day – we have reserved the inside view and museum orientation for a later day – when it’s very wintry perhaps just so that we could enjoy the current weather.
In general, I was quite pleased with Vienna – rich in culture and history. Of course, needs to be explored and read more…but maybe some other day.
Baking is something, I simply love. Breads especially, but I am also fond of baking tea-cakes. I try to bake one cake every week, so that we have sufficient for a week’s tea-time. This fruit cake was an instant hit. I followed all the tips and tricks from Vanilla Bean blog’s strawberry buttermilk cake – with minuscule variations like added much lesser sugar quantity.
And now I look forward to baking something this week, overlooking the floating clouds and making some plans for the week ahead, as I type here…
Wishing everyone a great week ahead… 🙂
Some days, I love this fulfilling breakfast. Normally, I have a toast, peanut butter, eggs, cheese, nuts and a cup of tea(ginger flavoured) for everyday breakfast. But, there are days, when I love an Indian spread. I have grown up mostly having rotis or paranthas for breakfast. There was a time, when I also skipped and did not like eating anything in the mornings. But that was catastrophic to my health. Having breakfast is so very important – to fuel your rest of the day.
Here’s a very filling and nutritious breakfast – daal parantha(flatbread made of lentil and multigrain flour), omelette, cabbage stir fry with some green peas(cooked in a very bengali way), some nuts and my favourite adrak chai(ginger tea). 🙂 After all some days you must indulge in
Daal paranthas, I learnt making it from my mom, who used leftover daal(lentil soup), and mixed it with flour, roughly chopped onions, green chillies, coriander leaves, caraway seeds and spices to make the dough and roll them into thin chapaatis and then with a little clarified butter fry them on pan. Loved them when she served with omelette and homemade pickle. I miss having her cooked food.. & that she is so good at it.
And yes, happy friday!! Have a good, healthy weekend you all beautiful people. 🙂
We were unstoppable, and one more long weekend. Bangkok it was then, to explore a little bit cityscape. It was humid, hot, polluted but colourful, bright & fun.
Pink taxis were quite a sight 😀
Bridges and wide streets and tall buildings, kissing the sky
Our hotel was pretty much in the heart of the city
The day we reached, we cruised the Chao Phraya River and what a sight it was!!
We headed to visit the Grand Palace…
Beautiful art and a gorgeous palace
Interesting paintings that was telling tales of history gone by
Quite a beauty, if you have an eye for art and history
We had a local friend there, who helped us try out some local cuisine. It was yummy. That was some deep fried crisp bread with chicken curry
Some chicken curry with rice. It had a strong peanut base and yummy!!
A little bit fun in the night – Sky bar, Bangkok
And you get a sparkling night view of the entire city, bright and beautiful
The following day was a trip down to the famous chatuchak weekend market – an array of tiny make-shift shops of every possible stuff – clothes, shoes, home decor, art & craft, etc etc. We did buy small stuff, like spices, few souvenirs, but overall enjoyed the vibrance and tidbit of small eats like this coconut ice-cream.
It was incomplete without visiting the Golden Buddha…and all I can say is that it was just so calming.
So, Bangkok was a short, fun trip worth covered. Dalai Lama, quoted “Once a year, go someplace You’ve never been before” I add, it doesn’t matter if you get a chance to go twice or more than once a year, but go….!! 😀
Normally, there is so much you can explore in Srilanka. But we wanted a relaxed long weekend tied to a beach-resort, and we wanted to save the exploratory mode for a later date.
Booked flights, sorted VISAs, zeroed on the resort, packed bags and off we went to enjoy the sun soaked beach in Srilanka. This particular resort had a lagoon as well, but we chose our room sea-facing but to our dismay we could only hear the divine sea shores as the beach was some 100-200 mts away and slightly downwards (am guessing to avoid cyclone havoc). I guess if we had a room slightly above in terms of floors, perhaps we could get the view – this resort mostly had private cottages.
This nice looking view otherwise had some coffee tables for the evenings, but who wanted this when we had the beach to relish. It was not bad though.
It was serene.
The first floor where normally food was laid for all guests, you can catch the glimpse of this beauty called BEACH.
And what should I say about this…. pure love. Salt induced love in the air. Golden beach. And distant horizon. Yes, you can now drown in dreams.
I swayed for sometime on the hammock dreaming…and occasionally looking at the sky.
And to soak in completely, and remain hydrated, I had something to drink too, yes, by the beach. Sounds so much fun. No? It was 😉
Please do not judge me by my plate, after a lot of swimming, and walking around, I was tired and lazy to fetch myself a second or later helpings, yet wanted a bit of everything to taste srilankan food, so got it all.. & It was delicious. Though I would not classify hotel /resort food as authentic, I would really wish to taste local delicacies in homestays, cooked by home cooks. None the less, it wasn’t bad and gave us an idea of what and how locals ate. I feel, it was quite similar to food from Kerela.
Some local sweet …stuffed with coconut
I don’t know why they are called string hoppers, but they were my favourites every breakfast morning!!! Yumm!!
To offer a glimpse of cultural dance, the resort did organise a folk dance. That was sweet.
The palm trees were a saviour in the sunny and humid weather.. On a separate note, whoever is reading this, please save trees or plant more trees and make it green around you. The earth needs it so much and so does human beings.
Such a beauty
I tried to distract and read a bit…, the idea of book by the beach is a poem to me.
Srilankan currency – interesting graphics of ethnicity.
And how exotic the beach looks by the sun downing. No?? I fall in love every time looking at this. 🙂
Hope it was worth stopping by my reviving blog :p
Yes, I am a crazy Gemini!! Looks like the blog love is slowly reviving and I am completely kicked about it, the result is this back to back post and a little free time of course 😉
The title is however meant to be the key point of attention. I did not have a major sweet tooth earlier, and now I admit, I do – and mostly my cravings to have anything divine and excessively chocolaty – dark ones (not the milky). I was never a big chocolate fan but now, I can not give it a miss – the store visits are never complete without the chocolate buys or indulging in some cake. Really. I do wonder why.
No am not eating a chocolate as I have none at the moment, but I am dreaming of course of a rich, nutty or berried chocolaty sweet something…like this
Pic Courtesy: Google
Gone are the days, when we would sit and flip the album pages and reminisce the good times captured and stored in photographs, and smile inadvertently. Now, it’s mostly the digital way – scrolling through the pictures on the phone or the tab or laptops – I can assure it doesn’t give the same joy, not to me personally. Yes, it’s quick and easy however.
Nevertheless, I am adaptable to the new ways and don’t complain at all, as I care much about the essence of it – “time’s forever frozen still”… (a beautiful line and one of my favorite songs, from Ed Sheeran’s photograph)
(..as I was going through the images from my folders, I could remember having this delicious cake and hot chocolate on a very wintry afternoon)
Hope everyone’s having a good week otherwise!! 🙂
Yes, I left my most favorite & loved world abandoned – for a very long time now. I realize almost two years. Phewww!! Time flies, indeed. I hope I can write and reconnect and restore the lost bond. Maybe or may not be as frequently as possible but let’s say I will try.
My better half, and I are both travel freaks. We love nature trails. And at any given moment we jump on to explore something new and exciting. So, it was Madikeri, Coorg. A beautiful little town surrounded by hills, valleys and rain-forest.
Whenever we go trekking, we both start spinning our dreams of living up somewhere on the hills in a little wooden home, filled with love. We hope to fulfil it someday!!! 😀
Endless notes have been written on love and relationships. While actually, the truth is what works for a certain couple may not work for others and likewise! Hence, every relationship is different. Unique. Because, it’s the marriage between two individuals who are different, and cannot be what the prints define, or how someone else opines. It’s a constant work in progress, a perennial discovery, adapting to changes, accepting situations, and above all respecting each other!
Love, is beautiful. Divine. Pure. And, when you find the right person, love follows. It helps you overcome all the barriers and helps you grow and evolve significantly as a person. It also gives you the much desired strength and courage to fight against all odds. Of course, sometimes, experiences are not so good, but that should never change our faith in love. And I have come to believe this strongly, when the faith is strong, nothing goes wrong ever!! 🙂
Who says, Life’s perfect anyway…! 😉 But, with the right person, the journey becomes easier, exciting and adventurous!
If. If, only this breathtakingly, magnificently crafted slice of heaven belonged to me, I promise, I would never ever..ever…EVER… want to leave this for anyone or anything else on earth, even if the God of death, came knocking at my door :p
I am a huge fan of this Indian Summer blog, it makes me dream insanely. Even more. I recently shifted to a beautiful place. Something really close as this, overlooking a patch of green. Stay tuned to sneak peek.. am just kind of putting it up altogether 😉
Have a great week ahead! 🙂
I seem to have loved you in numberless forms, numberless times…
In life after life, in age after age, forever.
My spellbound heart has made and remade the necklace of songs,
That you take as a gift, wear round your neck in your many forms,
In life after life, in age after age, forever.
Whenever I hear old chronicles of love, its age-old pain,
Its ancient tale of being apart or together.
As I stare on and on into the past, in the end you emerge,
Clad in the light of a pole-star piercing the darkness of time:
You become an image of what is remembered forever.
You and I have floated here on the stream that brings from the fount.
At the heart of time, love of one for another.
We have played along side millions of lovers, shared in the same
Shy sweetness of meeting, the same distressful tears of farewell-
Old love but in shapes that renew and renew forever.
Today it is heaped at your feet, it has found its end in you
The love of all man’s days both past and forever:
Universal joy, universal sorrow, universal life.
The memories of all loves merging with this one love of ours –
And the songs of every poet past and forever.
The toughest thing about writing is …some days, the mind is all set to explode with thoughts, but the hands refuse to synchronize and the words somewhere fumble and fail to get expressed. May be this is what is called a writer’s block. Those days, you know… you simply sit and read…and RT or just RB (ReTweet / ReBlog,) or simply share what your like-minded bloggers, tweeple, post and publish.
Souveniers by The Cloudcutter
“Some friendships are like our most prized possessions – a favourite old toy or a souvenir from the past. Things that we’ve probably misplaced or even mistreated at times, but have weathered many storms to still hold that special place in our hearts. If you look superficially, you can still see the wear and tear, the undone stitches and sewn-up holes, but it takes a keen eye to understand that these are the friendships that will always tug at our heartstrings no matter what happens or where we go. They are the ones we will always seek when we’re lost, and they’re the ones that will continue to guide us home when darkness falls. And just like our favourite old toys and souvenirs from childhood, these are the friends we will never give up.”
Finally!! Sharing a little glance of my nest 😉
The Tea-Poy…. Ancient. Classic. Teak Wood. One of my Favorites.
Place of my all time love – Reading. Me-Time. Relaxing. Peace. 🙂
And… yes..my little joy of cooking, baking and inviting friends and sharing the joy is priceless 🙂
Every corner tells a story, as it’s weaved with so much love & care and attention 🙂
Rape has almost become a synonym to women…these days. Sigh. Nothing seem to scare them. No death threats, not even worldwide protests, awareness, campaigns seem to help. It’s very very sad. And what’s more disheartening is there seems to be no solution to this and people think – in this country, they can get away with everything attitude, and it is their birth right to treat women JUST the way they feel like.
Down south, in India, seemed like a safe zone, until a few years ago for women to thrive in… unlike Delhi and some other North Indian states, but not anymore. All this f****** media furor everyday, is just adding fuel to the fire. And, that, “Kuch Bhi Kar Lo…Kuch Nai Hone Wala…” belief (Nothing is going to happen..no matter what you do) is just giving birth to more culprits on the way…more rape prospects and free will to abuse and mistreat. It’s a shame to mankind.
While I know there’s change happening, I know men who respect women too, treat them well, but it’s just not helping on the massive scale. Verbal Abuse, and ill treatment is no less. Read this, a very very recent incident, written by my friend and the victim of it, was shaken to death almost with absolutely zero fault. Who was this, supposedly, well educated, tamed, so called, civilized guy? I do not wish to run any campaigns, do not wish to take up any protest march, cause everything seems to be futile. All we wish(my friend, my friend’s family and ofcourse I) that this guy, reads this some day, and realizes what he did was not something to feel proud of, and that, will he ever be able to live with his conscience ever, causing so much disgust to someone for no reason). As of now, all I can do is thank God, that you are safe.
” Am I safe? People watched as he verbally abused me – By P.C.
“ladki parhao..ladki bachao” – Lekin kyun?
Our Prime Minister has started a long overdue campaign to save the girl child. To further support his campaign we have ads on-air from prominent brands like “Ariel” and “Vogue” saying “ladke rote nahi, ladke rulati nahi hain sekhao” and “is laundry a women’s task only”. But then I wonder….. for what purpose are we asking our society to save the girl child .So that they are available to be further abused and berated..? So that a man’s bad day can be vented out on his wife, sister, mother, friend…or in this case a total stranger. Like me.
Yesterday, the 26th of Feb 2015 at around 1:30, I met my friend for lunch. It was a normal day wherein we chatted had lunch and then she walked back to her office and I got into my car to drive back to mine, which is across the Domlur flyover. As I was taking the turn to join the traffic on inner ring road, right in front of Mast Kalander and the Honda Showroom (Amar Jyothi Layout, Domlur, Inner Ring Road), the time must have been 2:15 in the afternoon, a well-dressed man appeared out of nowhere as I was trying to maneuver my way out of that narrow lane, and started banging the car, on the back windsheild asking me to stop…..and that’s when my nightmare started.
This man verbally abused me for the next 15 minutes, claiming that I just tried to run him over! Called me a “Bitch” a zillion times, asking me to get off of my car saying that “we” people are apparently continuously trying to run down pedestrians. At this juncture I would like to point out that I drive an 8-year-old Maruti 800, that can barely go beyond 40kms!! And I am all of 5ft tall and couldn’t harm a fly even if I wanted to, and have been driving for the past 6 years in this very city, without killing myself or another soul.
So, this man in the meanwhile who was dressed in a purple check shirt and a pair of jeans, brown ankle type boots and must be around 5-8″ kept abusing me non-stop in English using the word “f*****g bitch” and “f**k you” every 5 seconds…and kept insisting I get out of the car. I was in shock, but had the presence of mind to stay in the car and lock my doors. I couldn’t drive away because a crowd had gathered and had blocked my path.
Ah the crowd….that patiently waited and watched while this man continued abusing me, not one person thought to tell him, that perhaps you could use proper language. All the while he kept banging the car too, if it was not enough to scare me with his abusive language. I was trying to tell him, that I had not seen him at all, and if I DID try to run him over, that I was sorry….to which he replied…”then you better watch how you drive you f*****g bitch”. Finally after what seemed like ages, when I had a little space I took my car and drove away.
I took the U-turn and stopped the car cause I was shaking like a leaf….and I didn’t think I could drive a mile more. I think I sat there in my car…for how long I have no clue.
Today I am thinking to myself do I feel safe being out on the streets in this city? No. This happened in broad daylight with about at least 50-60 people around…and no one thought it was necessary to stop this obvious Psycho ,because it’s okay to be abusive. Is it? Cause it’s a man’s right in this country? Are we seriously in the same city where in one hand we are paving pathways to Mars and running campaigns to save the girl child?
Yes let us save the girl or else who will we abuse??
Link to the original article here.
Drinking tea in these little claypots, has always been my most preferred way of drinking tea/chai. The tea lover that I am, I can rave about its endless joys – the earthy smell, the earthy flavor, its simplicity, and of course that …it’s completely eco-friendly. Feeling the warmth.. cupping with my both hands and enjoying every sip, is what I call divine. 🙂
Tell me, won’t you just love to sit under the shade of a huge tree with its arms wide spread across, overlooking a magnanimous sea, and do just about nothing…! And let yourself relax every bit. And may be let every inch of your body soak in nature’s glory.
South Goa, is magnificent. Now, I experienced Goa in just another season, peak wintry time… trust me, evenings were really chilly and mornings were just so perfectly calming. And, there are some beaches which are absolutely untouched – you just need to ride a bike and explore aimlessly.
Nature, every time you surprise me with your absolute charm.
Have a great weekend ahead everyone, and travel as much as you can 😉
2014, when I look back,
you were not that harsh.
There were moments of joy, and moments of sorrows,
that quiet amusingly passed.
I traveled & explored, and lived some dreams.
Met new people, made some friends,
found love and much more.
Acquired new experiences & lessons in life.
2015, now I look forward to you,
hopefully, that you would be even better…
bringing in more love, happiness and good health.
For me, and for my loved ones around me.
Here’s wishing all those who have enjoyed reading me…a very very warm and prosperous New Year. I genuinely mean it. 🙂
Aldona, Beach, Books, culture, Food, Goa, Homestay, India, Life, Local Market, Mapsua, North Goa, Old Heritage Homes, Photo, Photo Essay, Photography, Poi, Porch, Portuguese, Prawns, Sea Food, Spices, The Only Olive, The Road Less Travelled, Travel, Travel Journal, Village, Writing
As the dinner simmers slowly on the stove… I sit down to write, collecting my thoughts, with stillness around, about my beautiful sojourn in the quaint little place called Aldona, in Goa.
You know, I never need an excuse to travel. All I need is an urge to runaway to the wilderness of a new destination – to explore something new. So, when the urge sparked, I went ahead and booked my tickets to Goa, for a weekend. Well, it had to be Goa, North Goa, as monsoons cast a mysterious spell in that coastal belt. This time, certainly, I intended to explore more of its native life, unlike the last luxurious excursion, to consume more about the general lifestyle and cultural norms, and of course to taste the food, cooked home style. Hence, I preferred a homestay, which I thought, would help me experience it well. I feel, hotels, can’t fulfil that quest to savor the local flavors, both in terms of food and culture.
During my brief research I stumbled upon “The Only Olive”, a supposedly century old Portuguese style villa, restored and renovated. The lonely planet, Outlook, Condo Nast` and several other travel journals had strongly recommended. I looked up for reviews too, which seemed to me, a reasonably good place to lodge. They all recommended its hospitality and the feel-good-experience, well that is, only if you like the kinds – the rustic, timeless, classic touch. I went ahead, made my reservations. Though it was a brief conversation with the owner, I could figure out, this gentleman, was not here to do just business, but instead, he wanted to leave a fine imprint on the visitors with an ever-so-rich experience in true Goan customary style.
As soon as I landed, a fresh most air, welcomed me in Goa. There were soft clouds, all over the sky, but did not promise rains. It was green – lush greenery sprawling all over. I was picked up from the airport, and on my way, I observed how calm and serene the place was, where people were in no particular hurry, and they wore a smile, which was not plastic – I like to explore this bit, during the transit time, from airport to hotel or whatsoever, in my car, as it helps me gauge a bit about the place. Monsoon had bathed the floras and faunas abundantly, that almost everything sparkled and winked in happiness. The roads were clean and smooth – buttery, magnificently maintained. I thought, it would be fun to drive.
Maneuvering through the narrow roads, and having crossed, several old terracotta roofed old homes and little markets, we reached the homestay. It was an hour’s drive from the airport to the destination, Village Aldona, where The Only Olive was perched on a hillock, – a quaint little place, in North Goa, along the sides, there’s a calm river, that flows silently, cautious enough not to stir the tranquility of the place.. And as I walked up to the porch, I could take a sweeping view of the surrounding village, and listened to the constantly chirping birds, that need to be located with careful attention somewhere behind the flowering bushes and fruit trees, specially, an olive one, that the patch of garden boasts of.
The caretaker welcomed me with a gentle smile, helped me carry the little bag inside and escorted me to the room. I was amazed to look around – A very high celling, roofed using terracotta tiles, the old teak wood beds, tall wooden doors, the old style iron hooks to lock them, terracotta tiled floor, my favorite unfinished wooden table, positioned for dining outdoors in the courtyard, the old, style, caned arm-chairs.
I simply felt, I could touch the era that’s gone by. Santosh, the very humble, polite caretaker, quickly got some tea, bread and eggs for breakfast. The bread was a local one – rich in fibre, husk and pocketed ones, like pita, slightly chewy but very fresh and enjoyable, that was sold door to door in a little motor bike, piled in a cane basket, covered tightly with a plastic sheet, to ensure its freshness was sealed and intact. I enjoyed my every bite, and then decided to take a power nap, so that the rest of the day could be well explored, unaffected by lack of rest.
Around noon, I could not resist. I woke up, dressed up, to venture out in my rented car. Decided to start with the local market, where the magnificent church, little shops, general stores, etc. were all closely knit.
I drove down, all through the narrow roads, reached the Mapsua Market, photographed the vibrant, colorful fresh stocks, of spices, flowers, breads, vegetables, fresh supplies, in little makeshift shops and push carts.
After some time, went further to a couple of beaches – famous enough as the party hubs – Baga, Candolim, Calangute and further explored the Fort Aguada and the beach alongside.
The enroute was not so smooth – but it was fun wading through the roads, breathing in the air, that was so relaxed with a tinge of humidity. I walked along, splashed the salty water, looked across the horizon, and slowly retreated to the homestay. It was late evening, where silence enveloped the night and stars twinkled up there in the sky, which was fairly clear, signaling me, it was time to say goodnight…after a tiring day. Of course, on the dinner table, the steaming hot, fresh prawns curry, some rice, crumb fried fish, a veg curry and a green salad, awaited to be devoured. Santosh had neatly cooked and served the food. His services for the day had ended, and he headed home, to spend time with his flock, that stayed right behind.
Sigh!!!! Two days of absolute fun thus came to an end. Well, Goa is beyond parties and beaches, only if you wish to explore.
“Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?” – Mary Oliver
It took sometime to actually think, after I came across this quote on Goodreads. What do I plan to do with this one wild and precious life… ? All my bucket list started popping up… I want to do this .. and that….but, all in all, want to live life to the fullest, would make every moment a special one, add different colors to life, explore the world, become a wanderer and then at some point in time, ignoring all the worldly affairs, I would simply want to sit back and drink the nature’s chalice of joy…and jot down my experiences under the bright, sunny and azure sky, overlooking a green pasture.
P.S. No harm in being an absolute dreamer. 😉 BTW, please share if you can, what is it YOU plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
History was never interesting before. But, for some reasons I find it now. The quest to discover more about the gone by era, sort of, intrigues me, which possibly has several poignant tales entwined around the forlorn remains of the times and people and their lives. Hampi has always been on my wish list to explore, especially to learn more about the crumbling architecture. And, I did not leave this opportunity when this sudden plan cropped up with a bunch of friends.
Well, Hampi, being UNESCO’s World Heritage Site, a sprawling boulder-laden region of the then rulers of Vijayangara Empire… is amazingly magnificent. The weather was hot but tolerable due to pleasant breeze and partial clouds playing hide and seek in this month of June, so, it was not so discomforting. However, ideal season to visit the site is post November.
So, here I present a set of pictures that I managed to capture through my lenses – The beautiful rustic, ruins and architectural beauty of Vijaynagara Empire, based on the southern bank of Tunga Bhadra river.
The intricate wall arts, sculpted figurines, stone laid floors and walls present a remarkable and picturesque outline of the empire and speaks volumes about the mighty skilled artistes of the then era. There are about 80 monuments, spread across, we managed to explore quite a bit. The place, where we used for lodging had some good books, I did spend some time too to read about the history surrounding the place, and it was fun.
A Note: The photographs exclusively belong to me, please do not steal. I would be happy, if you bear reference or seek my permission. Thank you! 🙂
Flowers have a mysterious way of hypnotizing me, be it in any form. Whether it’s wild or exotic, whether it has fragrance or not, they never fail to bring a smile. Fragile, timid, in variant shades and colors, they look strikingly beautiful.
On a recent trip to a nearby hilltop, I noticed this pastel colored wild flower, sans any scent, perched delicately against the mighty hills. It was beaming with joy, as it bathed in the abundance of golden sunlight, so nonchalantly, happy & bright, oblivious to any uncertainty, any hail or storm, bad weather conditions, unlike we humans, who spend most of our time worrying what the future beholds, errr.. let me correct, what the next minute holds. 😉 Strange. No?
I loved it, found it inspiring. Hope you like it too. Sharing this to spread some brightness around…well, not quite on a Wordless Wednesday! 🙂
There’s nothing called “My all time favorites”, or “Love Forever”. I have realized, with passing time, our tastes, likes, dislikes and preferences change. Things we used to like as kids or adolescents, might not be something we like anymore, of course, that’s the process of growing up and discovering life and blah blah.. but am a bit surprised. You know, I have noticed, few things I used to like before, I have started disliking them.. And things I’d hated, I’ve started liking them…Just for instance, I’d never liked long hair, especially since it involves so much care, you know for good, long, shiny hair. So always preferred keeping it shoulder length, but, for the last one year or so, I have started liking it, and am growing my tresses now…! Sharing a pic too 😀
Right now, it’s reached…just a bit above my waist. 🙂 But, with this …comes in a lot of trouble to maintain its texture and quality… Sigh!!!!
So, my fitness instructor / personal trainer, has put me on some sort of a diet and restricted me from eating any carb after 8:00 PM. And, all I can feed my tummy is with loads of vegetables, some egg whites and milk …. or grilled chicken/fish etc. The latter part isn’t convenient after work
Now, I kind of get severe hunger pangs in the evening, and since my training is in the evening, it’s nearly impossible to eat just veggies, so here’s the cheat bit – I sauteed lots of fresh vegetables – broccoli, french beans, carrots, mushrooms, spring onions etc, and then added just a little boiled, strained Maggie noodles with its masala-powder 😉 And I did not complain .. 🙂
This morning, the sky looked this vibrant. Yes, bright and happy mornings inspire me amazingly. And how we are going to spend the rest of the day quite depends on how well we’ve opened our mornings. For me it surely does. Even if there are struggles that lay ahead, we possibly would have enough positive energy to fight it. I believe so. No? 🙂
I have just had my morning cup of tea, and as I type this, my breakfast of fried eggs and toasts are in the making, followed by some chopped apples and nuts.
Stay fit, happy and inspired!! 🙂
The much anticipated Oscar ceremony is over. I think these awards thingy is a tad too hyped. Though, I don’t care much, but I guess, it matters to those who work hard to get recognized in the field of cinema. So amidst all the honorary give-aways, what really caught my attention, the most, was this bit of Nyong’o’s acceptance speech – “No matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid”.
Yes, her words, kind of sound magic to me. And reinforces my belief that we should not put our dreams to rest. We must dream big. We must live to see our dreams come true. Yes, that’s what Life is all about – to give wings to your dreams and fly high in the scale of life…:-)
Out of all the nominated movies, I did watch Blue Jasmine, and I think Cate was very natural, and she delivered a fine performance. Her acceptance speech was genuine too. And, I am going to watch “12 Years a Slave” very soon.
Congratulations to the winners!!
Bangalore has been tough when it comes to auto rickshaws. It really is difficult. My everyday tyranny is inexplicable in words – especially with the drivers. I have observed they are even worse with people who are not the natives of Karnataka., or cannot speak the local language. Few are good though. Just few. But yesterday, my experience was sweet. Extra sweet.
So, usually, after workout, I wait for an auto. At times, if I am lucky, I get one, in not less than 10 mins, and at times, it’s 15 mins or over. Some pass by, ask and refuse to go to the direction I say. Some ask blatantly for 3 times more. All this leaves me exhausted and irritated, imagine after a day at work and the gym. Yesterday, it took me quite sometime again, but I saw an auto cross, with a passenger in it. My heart sank. But, the auto suddenly stopped ahead, and the passenger, I saw stepped out, after paying him. I sighed a relief, I immediately rushed to ask the auto, if he would go. He agreed too, without asking extra fare or anything else. I softly whispered a little prayer, thanking God and sat inside.
Apparently, the driver told me, “Madam, the guy got down, seeing that you were waiting anxiously, and decided to walk ahead. He had to get down further ahead.” I could not help but smile. Little ahead, I almost screamed out a big “Thank You” to the guy, I noticed, who was walking ahead. He smiled and gently waved. 🙂
This world would have been a difficult place to live, without these sweet people around. Let us show our kindness in whatever little way, possibly we can.
I am Me. In all the world, there is no one else exactly like me. Everything that comes out of me is authentically mine, because I alone chose it — I own everything about me: my body, my feelings, my mouth, my voice, all my actions, whether they be to others or myself. I own my fantasies, my dreams, my hopes, my fears. I own my triumphs and successes, all my failures and mistakes. Because I own all of me, I can become intimately acquainted with me. By so doing, I can love me and be friendly with all my parts. I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me, and other aspects that I do not know — but as long as I am friendly and loving to myself, I can courageously and hopefully look for solutions to the puzzles and ways to find out more about me. However I look and sound, whatever I say and do, and whatever I think and feel at a given moment in time is authentically me. If later some parts of how I looked, sounded, thought, and felt turn out to be unfitting, I can discard that which is unfitting, keep the rest, and invent something new for that which I discarded. I can see, hear, feel, think, say, and do. I have the tools to survive, to be close to others, to be productive, and to make sense and order out of the world of people and things outside of me. I own me, and therefore, I can engineer me. I am me, and I am Okay.” – Virginia Satir