Wednesday, November 21, 2012

I have moved...

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I have moved to Wordpress.
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Monday, November 12, 2012

1991 : A Diwali Story

Year : 1991, A Diwali day , 10.00 am at CRPF Residence Quarters, Hyderabad

I want to see the fire.. please didi light some crackers” , 6 yrs old Su said.
No, not now. In the night. Diwali crackers are to be lighted in the night” 8 yrs old Didi answered.
Please didi, just one.. please
No. not now, let Amma & Papa come back
Please didi, I want to see the fire, please light one kambithiri (sparkle stick)”

She dragged a stool towards the stand on the wall where God's idol was kept. She climbed on the stool and took the match box kept next to the Vilakku (lamp). Su took 1 sparkle stick out of the box under the table. She took a piece of newspaper and both moved towards the living room window.
I will light the newspaper, and hold it outside the window, you can light the stick from the fire in the newspaper and hold it outside the window.”
Su gleefully “haan haa”
She kept the newspaper on the window sill and lighted it. And then the most unexpected thing happened. The wind blew the burning paper into the room and it fell on the cotton cloth which covered the sewing machine next to the window. It caught fire.
Su was scared and started crying. She immediately pulled the burning cloth down, but by then the sewing machine bar had caught fire. She ran to the bathroom and dragged a bucket of water to the room and poured cups of water on the burning cloth and sewing machine. The fire was put out. Next she took a broom and cleaned off the charred cloth and ash water from the room. Then she noticed a burnt hole in her pink frock. She immediately changed the frock, hid it behind the iron trunk in the bedroom.
Then she took her frightened little brother with her, locked the flat (in the 1st floor) from outside, climbed down the stairs and sat at end of the stair case waiting for her parents to come back.
She had cleaned and hid the frock, so that her parents don’t come to know about the fire. But when the parents were back, she just broke into tears.
Amma worried, “What happened, why are you here and not in the room? I asked you both to stay inside till we come”.
Sob. “go up and see
What ? What happened
Sob.  go up and see
Amma grabbed Su and Papa grabbed her and rushed upstairs.
On entering the flat, they didn’t find anything odd. Then they got a faint burnt smell.  Amma ran to kitchen. But there was nothing on the stove and everything was as she had left. They both looked at her quizzically.
“What happened ?”
She pointed toward the sewing machine. Papa inspected the sewing machine and found the burn marks on the wooden platform, burnt and broken sewing bar. She broke into tears again and narrated the whole incident.
Papa looked at the crackers kept below the table. They were intact, except for one sparkle stick on the floor near the window.

Amma “ Thank God. The crackers didn’t catch fire. How could you both be so naughty? I just left you for few minutes and this is what you have done?…………

Papa inspected them for burns. After making sure they both were fine, he took the broken bar, pulled both the kids to the bedroom. Tied them to the leg of the bed and said
Stay there till I come back from the duty. No more play, No crackers, No Diwali for you”

Amma, ofcourse untied them after some time, fed them but did not allow them to move out of the room. By evening papa came back. He did not talk to them. They had a silent dinner. Outside the room crackers were bursting, children were shouting; inside, there was dead silence. The children went to bed sobbing.

Then they heard Papa’s voice.“So you are sleeping without burning crackers on Diwali? and who will eat the Diwali sweets I have brought ?” The children jumped out of the bed. The whole family went to the verandah, burnt crackers with Papa’s supervision, enjoyed sweets and happily celebrated Diwali. Next day Amma & Papa explained to them their mistakes and about the danger their action would have caused. And also praised the girl for her presence of mind and appreciated the way she managed the situation.

Things I don’t remember now about the incident : Where did Amma & Papa go ?
And what was my brother doing all the time I was putting out the fire and cleaning the floor.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Anniversary Rusk

Spandana's Mug Cake
I wandered into this Blog and saw this recipe . I have never baked a cake. I do not have the equipments to bake in an oven and I am too scared to bake in the pressure cooker. I have this weird feeling that my pressure cooker will burst if I keep it on stove for more than 10 mins. By the way, I also have this weird feeling that my oven will burst if I keep it on for more than 5 mins. I have previously used the oven only to heat the leftover meals.
So this recipe gave me the chance to bake a cake using regular coffee cups, that too in 5 minutes time.. I thought of surprising Raj with this Cake on our fourth Anniversary, yesterday.

But my first baking experience didn't go well :(
My Mug Rusk
My mistakes :
1. Filled up to 3/4th of the cup,  when my cup was smaller and I should have filled only 1/2 of the cup. 
2. Baked in the oven for 5 mins exactly, going by the recipe, ignoring Spandana's advise The baking time might differ depending on the microwave, so keep checking for every minute after first two minutes."

So poor Raj ended up eating over baked cake renamed as 'chocolate Mug rusk' .
As for Baking, I have not given it up yet. I know my mistakes and am hoping to make a perfect mug cake, the next time.

PS : I also gifted him a pair of formal shirt & trousers. Whoever says shopping for woman is nerve wracking, please try shopping for my husband. He took 2 hours to buy just 1 pair of shirt & trousers . By the time Raj’s shopping was over, Babs was so bored that he started pulling my hair and when we walked out of the shop, my hair was a khosla ka ghosla. My new hair style got many admiring glances on our way out of the mall.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Smart Birthday !!!

Image Source
July 16th 2012  

My Nokia 3110 Classic, decided to drown in the water, not in chullu bar pani but table bar pani. No, it was not a suicide and noting that I wasn’t aware that the water dispenser kept on the table was leaking, it was neither a murder. It was an unfortunate accident. After being with me through the thick and thin, surviving at least 5 falls a week for 3 yrs and 10 months, it finally said goodbye.  

July 17th 2012 

Raj : Lets go and buy a mobile. Anyways you needed a new mobile phone, the phone you had was an antique piece, no one carries such old models now.
Me : No.. not today, now that I have to buy a mobile, I want to buy a smartphone and this month we cant afford it. If only I could get an old phone to adjust with for this one month.

Next 2 weeks , a friend was kind enough to loan me an extra mobile set she had. 

Aug 2012

Raj : Lets go and buy a mobile.
Me  : No.. not this month, we cant afford it. If only I could get an old phone to adjust with for one more  month.

My sister who was in Kerala enjoying a short vacation had come back and she lend me her old mobile set, Nokia 2600 Classic, which she had given her 7 yr old son to play with. My nephew was kind enough to trade his toy with chocolates, just for his beloved ‘elemma’ (mother’s younger sister ).

Sept 2012

Raj : We have waited long enough. Lets buy a new phone, I have checked the smart phones in the malls, Sony Ericcson Xperia seems to be good and in our budget.
Me : Ya.. but not yet. Lets wait and see if I get an increment this month.

Still using the Nokia 2600.

Oct 2012

Raj : My colleague has bought Nokia Lumia 900. Its good. Lets buy Nokia Lumia 800,  that would be in our budget.
Me : No. Smart phone will be a luxury. I keep dropping phones. This Nokia phone is good and can survive my rough handling. I use phone only to answer calls and rarely to make calls. And yes  as alarm also. I don’t need any extra features in the mobile. Can think of a smartphone next year. May be.

29th Oct 2012

My Birthday and guess what my Hubby gifts me : Samsung Galaxy S duos.

And my reaction : Oh my God !!. Why did you spent so much money on the phone ? It would make a big hole in our pockets. We could have bought it next year. May be I would have got an increment by then. Why did you…………
Raj : My dear please…….. What’s the use of saving money, if we can’t spent a little on such essential luxuries. ( ya, that's what he said "essential luxuries" ). 
Me : But I don’t need...
Raj : I know you wanted it . This is NOT a waste of money. This is what we earn money for, to fulfill our small desires.
Me  : Oh ok. ok.. ( by now I was impressed with the phone and giving more attention to it than my poor hubby )'s nice, looks good..  Thank you dear…
Raj : But don’t expect any other gift on our 4th Anniversary that comes 12 days after, and “mummy Seena’s” first birthday that comes 27 days after and the 4th anniversary of our first meeting which also happens to be today.
Me : One gift, for 4 occasions ? Oh God! You are such a miser. Mr. Kanjoos!!
Raj : Kanjoos!! but just now u were against spending ………..
( I walk away tapping on my new Samsung Smartphone) 

On another note :
Did you know Google does customized birthday Doodles for those who have Google account ? Well, I didn't. I was pleasantly surprised on seeing this when I logged in Google on 29th morning.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Babs & Elephant, Jalebi & Kappayum Meenum

Babs and Hubby Raj in front of the Elephant
My Babs is a true Mallu. Yesterday he had his first encounter with the Elephant. He was so excited to see the Elephant, he was shouting , clapping, touching it , pulling it's nettipattam  , pulling and tapping on it's trunk and was hanging on it's tusk. Fortunately (for the Elephant of course!), it was not  a real Elephant J

This happened when we went to DALA’s  (Dubai Art Lovers Association) Keralotsavam 2012, which was taking place just opposite to our villa. They had put up a life size Elephant statue, and our son’s reaction to it was really amazing.

Carricature of my 11 months old son  ' Babs'  by Artist Sadanandan
We also got his caricature done.
And we registered ourselves for blood and organ donation. And also for lucky draw contest which am sure we would never win. Am so unlucky in lucky draws that I would not win even if I am the only person participating.

And also one of my long time wishes was granted. I ate garam-garam jalebiyam for the first time ever. I ate Jalebiyam many times but somehow never got the opportunity to have ‘garamagaram jalebi’ right out of the kadai
Image Source
No, these are not the Jalebis I ate ( though looks exactly the same), I was too busy eating to think about clicking.  

They had put many stalls, including this Jalebi stall and tattukada  (street food stall ).
Raj ate some Kappayum Meenum (tapioca & fish curry – typical Kerala / Kannur food) from the Tattukada
Image Source
No, this is not the Kappayum Meenum he ate. I was too busy playing with a balloon, and keeping Babs attention on it, in an effort to keep him from pulling the plate off his dads hand, to click.
I too wanted to have kappayum meenum, but decided not to, after hearing Raj’s comment  “ udayathe kappayum, meeninte thalayum, mullum mathrame enik kiyttiyullu, allengillum Bharya villambi tharunna pole aavullallo  ” ( All I got is half cooked tapioca and skull & bones of fish, afterall I cant expect them to serve like my wife ) He likes only the tail part of the fish and whenever I cook fish, I select and serve him only the tail part, not that I like the head part but as they say if your loved one loves tail, you would have to start liking the head J.
I like my kappa mashed, as in the picture above. It was one of the things I craved during pregnancy. But I was advised by everyone around to avoid it since it is believed to cause gastritis. But my sweet sister finally made some for me to satisfy my craving. I devoured it and also proved that it did not cause gastritis ( at least not to me ). And then I made some myself, and once back at home for delivery, I convinced my mother to make some more.

You would be wondering, we went to DALA’s Keralotsavam and all I wrote was of food and the Elephant. Well, there were many programmes going on the stage, but Babs made sure we do not watch them, he loves moving around than sitting/standing at one place for long. And afterall the main reason we went there was to entertain him and not us, although we ended up entertaining our stomachs as well.