Monday, November 27, 2006

Picnic @ Lalbagh

What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon, than with friends in Lalbagh and enjoying a yummy potluck lunch. We had yummy Bread Rolls by Rachana, filling Kachori & tangy Tomato chutney by Sharad, delicious Aloo-Mutter by Kusuma and a lot of Veg Pulao & Chana-chole by me.

The sunny afternoon meant we needed no excuse to first simply gorge on the lunch and then laze around on the grass. All 4 kids chased each other, with their Mom's after them :)

Lalbagh is such a quite and beautifully green place. Even the mobile network signal is weak in the garden. That means no unneccesary phone calls. All there is to do is to check out the variety of trees & flowers, watch other family picnics and also romancing couples being interupted by whistling security guards.

Plus in the evening, Janapada Jatre was organised. Stage was set opposite the Kempegowda hill-lock, where the audience could sit on the natural amphitheatre steps. Fortunately this Saturday was not as crowded as it is on Aug-15 & Jan-26 Flower Show.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Hop, Jump & Skip visit to Udupi

Coconut grove outside Udupi homeI find it very amusing when friends praise the beauty and tourism value of Udupi. Whether it is the Udupi Krishna temple, or Maple beach or the Saint Mary's Island.

That's because Udupi for me, has always been my Grandpa's home, to go to for summer vacation. I never explored it as a traveler. Ofcourse we paid customary visit, to the temple and beach.

Well @ Udupi homeBut more interesting things were watching all fishes in the well. And to check the water level that year, that vacation ! Hoping the water has risen high enough for us to touch.

And then playing around in the coconut grove, lazing around along with the cows tied in open.

Visit to the beach has been more fun in recent years with more kid cousins. Growing up, me & my brother were the only ones to kid around. Malpe sea beach

Riding the rickety buses plying around. Esp for the parent supervised visits to Udupi market. For bakery stuff, chakli, rutti (for the delicious kori-rutti), Masala Dosa & cola at Diana and sometime Gold shopping !

Even if now I am a grown up, not much has changed. It's still parent supervised visits to the city so we don't get lost :)) I haven't explored anything beyond.

But I am ok with that. I get to the see rest of the world enough on my own.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Casino Royale

Too good, I say. 3 out of 3 of us found it that way. It's 1 am and I am still wide awake in awe.

Daniel CraigThe opening sequence may have been cryptic. But I got my answer, as to why they have bathroom tiles in background for the signature scene where we see Bond through a view hole, fire a shoot.

And we also come to know why he drinks Shaken Martini only. And the secret behind his suave black suit dressing style.

After watching nearly 3 weeks of Jemu Bond every weeknights on TV, I can list out what this Bond did differently.

The movie was not glossy, stylished and polished like Brosnan ones (Brosnan is my fav). And he definitely did not romance as much as Connery. There is more blood, more sun & more dust here. And there was no MonnyPenny (how can they?) and Q either (really too much!).

But there was a lot more of other things. The Scared guy chase was spectacular, absolutely incredile. Bond uses his brain alright, but the Scared guy was practically Superman. Ultimate I say. And then we get treated to more quite gambling sessions, with witty dialogues and cold blooded murders in the one hour intermissions.

When the love part begins, we were confused, is this the ending ? It was nearly 3 hours by then. That would have been really really different. But it soon changes, and we get what was left out throughout. We get a very slick, "Bond. James bond".

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Vivah

3 out of 4 of us found it ok. It was actually was. It's Sooraj Barjatya's capability that he can make an absorbing movie out of a non-topic.

VivahFrom the promos I felt it's going to be a bore. The first 15 minutes did feel that way. But with the boy-girl meeting & 'Do anjane ajnabi' song, it turned out well.

We hoped for some drama, which came in the form of an unaffectionate Aunt. But that was nothing by other movie standards.

And just when we resigned to absense of drama, and prepared ourself for a grand wedding, things go horribly wrong. And this part was really weepy. The pain Monish Bhel stingingly describes, goes right through. That is why they say in real life, there should be no sulky member during a wedding. Really something can go wrong.

But this tragic part was to reinforce the fact that marriage is a 2-way street. Contribution is to be made by both parties.

I went to this movie hoping to get a glimpse of 'Maine Pyar Kiya' and 'Hum Aapke Hain Kaun'. Some patterns did occur here. Prem gifted a dress for the late night birthday party in MPK. Here it's a diamond necklace. That way 'Mujhe Haqh Hain...', was the boldest part in the movie.

What was different from SB's other movies, is that music was not very note-worthy. I still have a casette & CD of MPK & HAHK and listen to then all the time. Can't say the same about Vivah songs.

And there was a reduction in unneccassary granduar, which was almost a SB invention. Here, we are treated to a small-town big house located in a narrow gully. And no separate comedy element.

Good thing SB made a smaller movie, when compared to his past 3. This gave him a chance to break his formula and try something new, even though its within his self-made confines. Now I can definitely expect a great movie from him.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Chores

Rakhi Sawant is our house favourite contestant in "Bigg Boss". She is simply super ! It was a relevation to see her uninhibitedly wash clothes, mop floor & prepare upma. All her mercurical dialogs are entertaining. She should definitely win.

And why I connected with her, was when in yesterday's episode, she screams this, while rinsing clothes -
"Moushi, tujhe to dus hazar pagar dena chahiye. Apun ki toh watt laga di !"

So very much agree with her. When my Laxmibai was away for a month, and I mopped floor, washed dishes & clothes, I would call my hubby everytime and sob, "We pay her so less, so so less. I have to buy a washing machine - just for her."

Seriously washing clothes is one hell of an exercise. Especially the rinsing part. The soap sods just never seem to end !

That reminds me of the anecdote I read in Reader Digest
Rama took immense pride in personally maintaining a great house.
Rama: I wash all curtains with my hands. I want them to last long.
Shama: Oh I let the ashing machine do it. I want to live long.

Bless the lady who pushed the guy to invent washing-machine.

Monday, November 6, 2006

World's Best Crab Curry




By my Mom, of course. The curry is coconut based, grinded fine with chilly, turmeric, tamarind, cummin, coriander, pepper etc etc. Standard Costal recipe. But Ah the delicious, soft, almost salty meat to be sucked out of the bulky long shell. Or to be scooped out. Or gently coaked out cm by cm by teeth.

There are some bad side-effects as well. Any pointed edge might hurt the tongue; gotto be careful there. And then those heat burnings in the mouth, after few hours. But the worst is - so less output for so much mehnat (hardwork). Nevertheless, I am waiting our next session.

After 12 years of vegetarianism, when I decided to cross-over, it was only to seafood. I tried chicken. My Mom's chicken curry is another delicious aromatic dish everyone swears by. But I didn't get much from the taste. Nah. It's only Fishdom for me.

Crab also reminds me of the Scallops I had in 'Vicky's Palace' in Montreal. Both in color & taste. Yumm. I don't think we get them here. Sigh. So I will stick Crabs for now.

Update: Here is the Recipe, my Mom finally managed to explain to me. Here is whatever little I understood. I hope it turns out just like hers. All the best.
1 kg Crabs
Half coconut
10 whole dry Red chillies
3 tsp whole Coriander seeds (Dhaniya)
1 tsp Cummin (Jeera)
1/4 Mustard seeds (Rai/Sarson)
1 pinch Fenugreek seed (Methi)
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder (Haldi)
1 lemon-sized ball of Tamarind
4 cloves of Garlic

Heat a little oil on a Tava, and roast the above stuff (except Crabs) lightly. Maybe 5 minutes.
Then grind it all to fine paste. Not very liquidy.
Slice 1/2 Onion and sprinkle on this paste.
salt to taste.
Boil this paste in a deep bowl. Maybe 15 minutes.
Add Crabs one by one.
Continue to boil till crab color changes to red. Maybe 10 minutes

Now it's ready to serve 6 people ! Enjoy !