It all started with my fetish for cast iron pots and pans. A friend mentioned in passing that cast iron cookware – usually elusive and expensive – was available cheap, and in abundance, at a place called Karaikudi in Tamil Nadu. Within a week, I was headed to Karaikudi with a single-minded mission: to buy a cast iron soup pot. Or two. Or maybe even three.
This post is long overdue… like several years overdue. Partly due to laziness, and partly due to a selfish desire to keep it to myself, the only mention I have made on this blog of my favorite Goa restaurant was brief – and didn’t focus on the food. Having just returned from our annual Goa vacation, where we had yet another fabulous meal at Fernando’s Nostalgia, I’ve decided that it’s time to bite the bullet. …Keep reading
Bhutan has consistently been rated as the country with the highest Happiness Quotient in the world. Hardly surprising, when you consider that the Bhutanese invented the concept of quantifying a peoples’ happiness as an indicator of the country’s socio-economic (rather than purely economic) growth. As in Sikkim, not once during our stay did we see an angry face, hear an impatient voice, or witness an argument. Perhaps I had my rose-tinted spectacles on, but time seemed to slow down in Bhutan, and the Bhutanese we met seemed to exude an air of contentment. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to imply that they aren’t ambitious or worldly wise; it’s just that they seem to lead a simpler existence. There’s still an innocence. People are hard-working, even-tempered, and accommodating. Perhaps Bhutan’s less-than-friendly terrain and climate make these traits a necessity. As Mr. Small put it: Bhutan is a cold country populated by warm people. …Keep reading
This October, the Giant Vacuum Cleaner had to take his 10th grade board exams. The Spouse felt it would be a great idea to whisk me away as far as possible in order to prevent mother-son meltdown. We ended up spending a couple of days in my favorite American city – Washington, DC. Despite having lived in the area for several years, we had never ventured into the District’s Chinatown neighborhood, other than to drive through it on our way to someplace else. Despite knowing that DC’s Chinatown is kitschy and about as authentic as an Elvis impersonator, I thought it would be fun to make like a tourist and eat Chinese food in a Chinatown restaurant. … Keep reading