We stopped one night after work to get a snack because I was starving. One of the group remembered there was a ‘geeley channe wala’ close to where we were, so we hunted him down and bought some boiled chickpeas tossed in chopped onions, cilantro, green chillies, salt, and lemon juice. It was tongue-tinglingly, lip-smackingly delicious. And I loved the fact that he had a muslin cloth shielding his wares and the old fashioned oil lamp…
The Sunday before last started out still and hot. By 2pm, the sky was overcast. By 2:15 there was a dust storm and really high winds. 10 minutes later we had torrential rainfall. Two of the big ficus benjaminas fell off a first floor balcony. The rain was cool and I was reminded how delightful it can be to get wet in the Indian downpour, when the water and the air around you are not freezing you to the bone… Anyway, everything was not all roses. Outside the house, this tree fell and crushed a neighbor’s car. A frangipani was also destroyed. But the irony is that I didn’t take this photo on Sunday. The tree was cleared away only a week later — because the car owners were waiting to file with their insurance company.
We’ve had frequent and intense rain in Delhi as the temperatures have soared. Last week I got off a bus and within the 20 seconds it took me to dash to the pedestrian underpass (or ‘subway’ in the local lingo), I was soaked. The rain battered the city for about 20 minutes and when it settled to a steady drizzle, I decided to walk home. But, the drainage in South Delhi sucks! So I had to retrace my steps, take detours, completely turn around even, and then finally, when I was about 50 yards from home — I got stuck! I was marooned on a 1-foot square of dry land and I really had no other way to go except through calf-deep muck! 😉 Then I saw inspiration. This dude was coming crab-like along the lower part of the corner house wall, thereby avoiding the flood below. So once he hopped on to dry land, I took his place and went the way he’d come — inching sideways along this random person’s house. And that’s how I got home without having to take my sandals off and wade through dirty, murky water! Hurray!
A few weeks ago, we were at the office late and I had an even later dinner to attend. I knew I’d get a raging headache if I waited until I reached my friends’ place so I stopped at the Cafe Coffee Day in the lobby of our building to pick up a sandwich. It being a bit late, they’d run out of options. From the vegetarian sandwich I had very few choices but this one — the Spicy Chinese Veg Sandwich — was the one I couldn’t resist. It turns out to have “Veg manchurian” — that most Indian of Chinese dishes — and, wait for it, chow mein. Yes, a noodle and cabbage sandwich. 😆 And it was pretty damn tasty. This past week, I made Maya try it. She liked it!
Dilli is blooming. There is purple jacaranda blossoming all over and boughs laden to the verge of drooping with yellow lanterns of laburnum at intervals. But nothing gladdens my heart more than the vivid splashes of orange and deep red the Gulmohurs bring. My heart is smiling.
On Saturday, a bunch of us from work plus other friends went to the poolside lounge at the Park hotel near Jantar Mantar. It’s called Aqua and it was lovely. I loved, loved, loved it.
There was a cool breeze blowing, a dj spinning great lounge and house music, pitchers of LIIT and Passion Bay … we even got to sit at the edge of the pool and dip our feet in. Aaaah! And of course we danced, the lack of a dancefloor being no object.
Earlier, 6 of us had gotten ready together at my house over sandwiches and Bacardi … and it was like being back in college. Later we went to the Yellow Brick Road and had a variety of random things (coffee, tea, soup, dessert, and a sandwich) between us ;D)
Spotted in Lajpat Nagar: hollow-headed clothes horses. Literally. Go figure. 😉
Last month, Tish took me to see Begum Abida Parveen in concert at the Jahaan-e-Khusrau festival finale held at the tomb of Ali Quli.
We camped out under the stars initially on uncomfortable chairs and then on the mattresses that were laid out, being hounded by mosquitoes, choking on anti-mosquito DDT-type fumigation, and bored by the never-ending opening acts on a lovely breezy night. Here, I captured Qutub Minar at gloaming, visibile through the fairy lights and the clay diyas, making the entire area seemed enchanted and far, far removed from reality.
I miss cinnamon rolls. I really do. I even miss the Pillsbury DIY (pretty awful) kind of cinnamon rolls I’d pop open at my brunches 🙁
When she was visiting, mom picked this up for me and I got so excited. But it was totally misplaced excitement. It’s not a cinnamon roll. In fact, it’s not even sweet. Noooo … this ‘confectionary’ is actually a mint/pudina roll. It’s spicy and … just not what my eyes and taste buds had perked up about. So sad 🙁 Next to it is depicted what was a sinfully good lemon tart.
I’ve promised folks pancakes for brunch someday. When I have a life …
A comforting sign in the elevator at the Kumars’ (no, not the Kumars at Number 42.)