Mixed Culinary Pleasures.

http://emergencyservicesphoenix.com/28-cat/casino_34.html Hello Everyone. A few days ago I met a friend, Prabitha George, at her work place and the first thing she said was “Why aren’t you writing anymore?” I promised her that she would soon be reading something from me as I might have some free time coming up. But the greatest mistake that one can make is to think one has time. Last week was one of the most hectic in a long, long while. College is still on lockdown, yet I’m run off my feet. But then, this occupation of mine has never permitted me to stick to the advertised job profile. Anyway, sometimes you need to dodge a few responsibilities to beat the stress and so I took to the kitchen to cook a couple of things that I enjoy eating – Coconut Milk Rasam, Pondicherry Creole Salad and a Chicken Fry (a recipe the husband forwarded to me and a meat that I don’t care for myself). In Pondicherry, the canal that runs through the breadth of the town used to, during French occupation, divide the same along racial lines. The part extending from the canal towards the sea was called the White Town and the other section from the canal, extending westward was the Tamil Quarter. Each had its own culinary uniqueness but most often, as is with imposed racial divides, the lines blur. Colonialism engendered both a mixed race population as well as a hybridized culinary style that defied the divide and literally curried favour with discerning palates on either side to become what we today call Pondicherry Cuisine. Coconut Milk Rasam is definitely a contribution from one side of the canal while Pondicherry Creole Salad is a bounty from the other; both found interchangeably in almost all homes within the boulevard, today. While Coconut Milk Rasam is everyday fare that tantalizes the tastesbuds, Pondicherry Creole Salad is most often reserved for Sunday lunches. Accompanied with a roast of one’s favourite meat, Selvam Bakery’s crisp roll bread, and a sunstantial goblet of red wine, Sunday afternoon is made!

Cheryl-Ann Proposes. God Has Other Plans for Her.

best virtual poker with friends Pergamino All the world’s a stage. We are mere players. The Gods do with us as they please. (With apologies to Shakespeare for this hotchpotch). The previous week, starting Monday, had been meticulously planned out. I was to attend a five day online course in the mornings, work with a Ph.D. student in the afternoons and if there was time to spare, blog. Day One  proceeds without incident and I look forward to the next four. Day Two shows signs of things falling apart. During class, a call comes through. A cousin’s wife, who is pregnant and with us during the lockdown, has gone into labour. She is 8 days early. It is difficult to concentrate, thereafter. Lectures finally over, I become one among the masked and appropriately socially distanced attenders outside the labour room. The doctors predict a long wait, and so I begin to work on my assignments in the corridor. I am determined to get through my course. However, poor internet connectivity ensures a struggle with each assignment. Work shelved temporarily, I begin to notice my surroundings. I remark that the Government Women and Children’s Hospital is very very clean. No one is permitted to loiter or litter. Patients and attenders are handled very professionally. Announcements of babies being born, relatives being summoned over the PA system, excited grandmothers informing family… all this makes me conclude that airports and hospitals are the most interesting places to observe humankind. Day Two ends half accomplished. Day Three, and baby has still not put in her appearance. I connect to my classes online but my heart is not in it for two reasons – interrupted connectivity and a bit of apprehension about the prolonged labour. Fears are allayed at 1.46 p.m. when the little bundle of joy arrives. I am now permitted to enter the bowels of the hospital where life begins and to personally take charge of my ward. We soon learn that all the women admitted have to done a saree. The new mother is not accustomed to the same. Justifications given for this dress code sound so ridiculous to me that I stoutly protest. This sets us off on the wrong foot with the caregivers. We have to listen to snide remarks about having been born in this country and pretending not to be comfortable in a saree. Day Four Mum and Babe are shifted to the Special Ward with the help of a friend. Again, the maintenance is impecable, the system well oiled. We fall into hospital routine. I log in to class but give up quickly as there are too many interruptions. We try breaking the ice with nurses and succeed to a large extent. I guess it’s very difficult to continue to be offhandish with a new mum and an adorable tot. Thereafter, I’m greatly indebted to them for helping me keep my sanity. The doctors are a different kettle of fish all together. One thing in their favour is their total impartiality. They make no distinctions among their patients. We are all presumed ignorant and not given a chance to prove otherwise. It was a constant case of damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Where on earth was the great bedside manner that doctors are supposed to have? Curt to the point of being rude was the norm of every single one and every ounce of will power was needed to avoid retorting. This was our only regret during the five day stay in hospital. In India, recommendations and assurances work. The Chief permits us to be discharged much to the annoyance of her duty doctors. Day Six, we are back home. The house is in a high state of excitement. It’s 23 years since we’ve had a baby amidst us. My course is long over and I have not attended half the classes. It’s bye bye certification for the moment. My Ph.D. student is waiting in the wings and I’ve taken over a week to finish this article. The most gorgeous of babies has taken over my life, I don’t have an moment to spare but neither do I have a moment’s regret.

Pastimes and Past Times.

100 plentiful treasure free spins 2021 round-arm Weary after a prolonged discussion on work-related issues, the conversation around the Boss’ table veered off-course to dwell on personal preoccupations during the lockdown. Many bemoaned the fact that apart from trying to keep themselves busy by reviving hobbies or completing half done jobs around the home, keeping the children engaged with activities was proving to be the hardest challenge ever. Gone are the times when joy was derived from a simple game of marbles or the spinning of a top, and today, the only noun our bairns can associate with the adjective ‘board’ is ‘exam’.  The interests of current school-going youngsters far surpass our own humble exertions of yore. A few colleagues spoke of stamp, coin and poster collections, while others laughed at their childhood fascination for bus tickets of different values and cutting out silver and gold figures from cigarette foils.  I remembered most vividly my penchant for snipping out pictures of Bollywood actors and actresses and pasting them into a scarp book. How I pestered my poor mother to buy me Stardust and Filmfare magazines!  In my early teens, the preference was for Hindi movies over Tamil ones. They offered more glamour and glitz! It was of a time when movie greats, such as the likes of Rishi Kapoor, Amitabh Bachchan, Dharmendra, …..  Neetu Singh, Zeenat Aman,  Jaya Badhuri, Rekha …. dominated the silver screen and I was an avid fan. When it came to Bollywood couples, the  Rishi-Neetu relationship got my fullest attention. To this starry-eyed teenager, they were the embodiment of romance. I fought fiercely with friends who offered their preferences as better actors or partners, and over the years, despite being distracted by my own trysts with life and love, this couple has always remained in the periphery of my consciousness. It was, therefore, with a lot of sadness that I received the news that Rishi Kapoor was no more. Losing him was in fact severing a connect with a youthful time in my life where fancy and fantasy kept me happy and provided me with a store house of great memories that I gladly share with friends around the Boss’ square table. Rest in Peace my childhood idol! You are gone but won’t be forgotten. ♥️