Thursday, August 27, 2009

Celebrating our 4th month wedding anniversary

Pras and I finally decided to go to the multiplex to watch Kaminey. We went to Prestige Forum Value Mall and booked for the 6pm show at Fame cinemas. Well, though Kaminey has been influenced by movies like "Snatch","Lock stock and two smoking barrels", etc., it is a movie worth watching. Shahid Kapoor has done a fantabulous job. The movie does have dramarama, comedy and hilarious action. And guess what? I ended up buying a new jean ;)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Dal payasam anyone??

My parents-in-law were very upset to know that Pras and I wont be visiting them for Onam. Hence, my mother-in-law quickly got down to making some dal payasam for us. I thought that it would be a very tedious task but she made it look very simple. Yet, I think I shall take the shortcut of using coconut milk from a tetra pak rather than extract it myself ;)

Here goes the recipe[this will also help as a reminder for me]
1. Coconut milk extracted from one coconut - don't mix the first and second pressing
2. yellow mung dal - 1 cup boiled
3. Jaggery - 250gms
4. ghee - 1 tbsp
5. cashew nuts - a few for garnishing
6. elaichi - a few for garnishing

1. Boil the jaggery in a little water
2. Pour the second pressing coconut milk and jaggery into the dal and allow it to boil for a while.
3. Fry cashewnuts and elaichi in ghee.
4. Add the first pressing coconut milk, ghee, elaichi and cashewnuts. Do not let it boil.

For extracting coconut milk, boil a little water. Grate a coconut. Add a tiny bit of hot water to the coconut and squeeze the coconut bit by bit, extracting the coconut milk. This is the first pressing.
Add a little more water to the squeezed, grated coconut and squeeze again to get the second pressing coconut milk.

Giving Ayurveda a try

After attending Remya's wedding, I went to an ayurvedic specialist. Off late I've been facing a lot of dandruff, hairfall and skin related problems. My in-laws accompanied me. It was a one-of-a-kind experience with the specialist telling me a list of problems just by feeling my pulse rate. No, I did not tell him that I had any of those problems. I was a bit surprised for most of what he told me was true. He gave me 2 Kashayams and one hair oil. I am gonna start using those from tomorrow. He has promised to cure me completely of these problems in 3 months. I shall keep you posted :)

Snake Snake Snake!!!

I had been to Palakad last weekend. Pras and I had gone to attend Remya's wedding. Remya is Pras's "muh-boly behen"[sister not by birth] :) The climate was really good... raining for a while and then sunny for a while - the sun and the rain were playing a game for sure. The wedding was simple, like ours, 10 mins and it was done. Remya was looking great and I really like Pratheesh, the bridegroom, for his simpleton like looks. After the wedding, we were returning home, and my mother-in-law who had entered the house gate first was standing still, looking at something, without unlocking the door. I walked upto her and asked her what the matter was and with movement of her eyes she motioned to me to look there. Looking ahead I saw the tail of a snake, entering the pipe coming from the bathing area in the toilet. Just going a bit off topic here, my father-in-law has built the house in a very eco-friendly manner :) He has about half an acre of land, but has built the house on a small area, growing turmeric, ladies finger, drumstick, mung bean[green moong], a different variety of french beans, coconuts, papaya and bananas. The water from the bathing area is diverted to the coconut trees/banana trees and the garden. Rain water harvesting has also been incorporated in the design. It is a very beautiful place and you get to see a lot of butterflies, which stopby at the flowers, squirrels and different varieties of birds. Some butterflies are so big and they seem to fly around just like birds.
Getting back to the topic, Pras rushed to the toilet to pour some water to scare the snake. However, the snake did not come out when Pras poured water. Pras very cleverly then poured some phenyl down the pipe and voila - the snake's head popped out, it put out its tongue to sense any danger and then made a dash for the garden. I wonder where it went. I was pretty scared to go near the garden. I must appreciate my mother-in-law's guts for she went into the garden a while later to pluck some ladies finger and beans for our next meal :)

Friday, August 21, 2009


We women need to make up our minds on whether we want to be treated as equals to men or we want men to follow "Ladies first". I've heard a lot of women complain about being treated as inferior or the weaker sex. The same women have also complained about not being given respect when men do not follow discipline such as "ladies first". It is either this or that. Unless you are very lucky, you can not get the best of both worlds. So all ye women out there, make up your minds! I know I am one of y'all ;)

Cruel humans

Well, the past week has been quite hectic. I have been getting home after 5:45pm, leaving home at 7:15am and cooking dinner for hubby dearest. Well, this may not sound like much, but it does especially after a tiring journey back from Ernakulam. So, on Tuesday evening, after completing all my chores, I sat down to watch television with Pras. Pras put on National Geographic and there was this really beautiful scene of colourful crabs, red, yellow and orange, crossing a road somewhere in Austrailia. A "wow" just escaped both our mouths when they showed a car just run over the poor things. How cruel can the videographer be to take a video of this and not to anything about it? The poor crabs are water beings, so they go to the water to mate and this is the fate we humans put them through. On the funny side, the car tires do have numerous punctures and the crabs which don't get crushed, do end up eating the remains of the crushed crabs :) Well, the humans do deserve the breakdowns, don't they?

The next scene was more horrific. They showed some very pretty birds building nests. The birds are allowed to mate and lay eggs and then boom!!! Some human being blasts a bomb below the tree on which these birds have built their nests, setting the tree and the nests on fire. All this, to control the population of the birds so that the crops are saved and enough is harvested to provide for human beings. Grr...

I agree we human beings are smarter than most living things today but why you this to our own advantage and commit such grevious crimes towards other living beings? Can we not use stringent measures to control our population so that all beings can survive? Why is it that human population is allowed to explode whereas the poor birds are killed.
Human beings are very cruel and I would not like to add one more to this mess. I am so thankful that I married Prashanth, who from day one has only talked about adopting a kid. Hence, we shall adopt a kid and try to make him/her a better person and give him/her a better life. But I will not add one more to the misery.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

This and that of Alleppey

As part of our "staggered"/"scattered" honeymoon, my hubby and I visited Punnamada resorts in Alleppey. The resort is a beautiful place with a lot of attention given to detail, so much so as to have wooden locks for the doors. Personally, I did feel that they've gone a bit overboard with the wooden interiors. That said, the place is very beautiful, peaceful, calm and serene, overlooking the Punnamada lake/backwaters. The staff there were very welcoming, everyone from the sweeper to the manager kept smiling always and were always willing to help.
We spent the first day on a houseboat. Well, I was thrilled - it was just Prashanth and me with the captain, a cook and a helper on the boat. Just before getting onto the boat I was cribbing about having to share the deck space with some noisy north-indian family. It was a welcome surprise when we were shown the way to our boat via the north-indian family's boat :). We were garlanded once we entered the boat and given a yummy pineapple juice. It was all hospitable and warm. We then set sail. The backwaters are very still and calm - smooth sailing :) I had a look around the boat and went to take a shower and to my disappointment was unable to get a single water droplet to fall on me :( Then hubby dear tried and he too failed. Finally, came captain to the rescue and all that had to be done was to turn the knob upwards :-P After a cold shower, it was time to enjoy the beauty of the backwaters - green rice fields, calm water body around us, other house boats passing by, noisy government transport boats, private boats with people ever willing to wave me a "hi", women busy at work outside their homes - they are so lucky to have a house just on the side of the river. Sadly, these people dont realize that they are polluting the water by bathing in the water, washing clothes in the river/lake, washing their vessels in the river. I wish they would realize this and instead of washing in the river/lake, take water out of the river/lake to do the needful on land with proper drainage facilities. Hmm.. this did sadden me quite a bit.

Anyways, forgot all that with scrumptous spread Syjeeth put in front of us. Once done with that, we played some carrom and I beat hubby dear 2 to 1. We then were joined by a very sweet couple from the US as we went in a row boat across the Venice of the East. Once back, we went a bit further and stopped the house boat for the day. Took a small stroll with Anoop[helper] leading us. We went near a lotus pond and saw a water snake... with its head nicely perched on top of a leaf - sadly we only got a glimpse and could not take a pic cause as Pras went closer to take a pic, it dived into the water. We walked back, played some cards, had another yummy meal and hit the bed.

The next morning, we awoke to the smell of pooris being fried. Once we ate, we set sail back to the resort. Back at the resort, we checked into our lake view room. The same had a view of the pool in the front. We took a shower, some snaps and went cycling. Once back, we showered and got into the pool. I tried to relearn swimming with Pras's help. We then had lunch, played carrom and table tennis at the activity center and then went on the speed boat.

I was very frightened when I heard the word "speed boat". However, not wanting to play spolit sport, I got into the boat and put my hands to my ears and looked down. We started and to my surprise I did not get the usual speed butterflies in my tummy. The person in charge also gave Pras and me a chance to try our hand at the speed boat. Was real fun. I never wanted it to end. Waterways are fun as you have no "right" way :)

Back at the resort, we took a walk around the nearby village with one girl coming out of her house and politely asking us to photograph her, which we willingly did so. We then had dinner, did another photography session and crashed for the day.

Next morning, we woke up, had bath and went in a row boat. Pras and I took turns with the one paddle given to us. It was a good exercise. One more bath and it was time to leave :( We were dropped at the alleppey bus stand from where we took a bus to ernakulam. On the way we got off to take an auto to "Fort Kochi". Fort Kochi is very much like Goa and you get to see a lot of foreigners in "short" shorts. ;) We visited the Maritime Museum whose caretaker was a very nice gentleman who asked me to take a look at his security guard when I asked him if it was safe for me to leave my haversack with him :) After walking around, we entered a gallery cum cafe, the manager of which was surprised to know that we were not from Goa - my thali confused him quite a bit. Infact, I think it confused many people since many of them kept glaring at it.

We had dinner at the "Abad Metro" hotel near the KSRTC bus stand. The food was very tasty and worth every rupee. We did not expect the bill to be just 115 rupees from the looks of the place. Got onto our bus and I slept through the entire journey on hubby's shoulder waking up for the first time when the bus had stopped cause there was a minor fire mishap due to faulty electrical wiring, which the conductor fixed in a few minutes. However, the bus got delayed and we were on the bus for more than 12 hours :(

I enjoyed this trip so much as I had Pras by my side at all times - the TV did not come in between us - not even once, which I had not anticipated. ;)

Monday, August 10, 2009

The world's fastest Indian

Well, so much for bikes with more vroom. My hubby and I were on our way back home after attending the intro to the landmark forum. Riding smoothly past us was a Bajaj Pulsar R220 cc bike. The guy riding the bike was wearing a helmet and the tiny guy behind him was holding onto the seat so that he does not fly away. We had stopped for a tender coconut on the HAL Airport road. When we started back, we saw that the bike was lying on the road having taken an exact 180 degree turn. The pillion rider seemed to have bruised his nose and was walking to the side of the road. The rider was looking very innocent and tried getting his bike up. The bike's front was not recognizable. Well, they had crashed into a poor cycle guy who was crying on the side of the road.

I wonder why people want faster bikes and other modes of transport. It is just a matter of a few minutes that will be saved and I don't think we are gonna acheive anything critical in a matter of a few minutes. Humans have weaved such a tangled web for themselves and are only moving rapdily towards spider's mouth by the day.