Monday, September 28, 2009

Austin Trip

Austin, capital of Texas is 160-170 miles from Houston. This place was one of the first trips we took after I came to Houston. We went there with friends. It was a 3 hr drive, we reached there a little beyond lunch time. So we just stopped at a place and had bisibele bhat, sabudana khichidi, pickles and papads.






We then headed towards Lake Travis. The plan was to rent a boat and have some fun time. Since we reached late, we couldnt get the speed boat, but we did get a pontoon boat. We had an hr till we could get this boat. So few of us took ride on the jet ski or wave runners. It was fun. But, it was too hot.


Finally, when we got on to the boat, we sat in the shade for a while, just roaming around the lake... Riding this doesnt need much of training, so all of us tried to ride the boat and it was complete entertainment. We spent nearly an hour in the lake with boat just roaming on the lake...





We then left to Austin Capitol. Well, I wouldnt say it was as good as the one in Washington DC, but it was amazing in its own way. We just did a round of this, took a couple of pictures, then headed for dinner and then back home.




This was a trip to be cherished forever.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Your money, my money, whose money is it anyway??

We were discussing about a new hindi movie, how the guy sees 12 girls in 6 days and decides to marry one of them in 10 days. Its a story very near to what happens these days. The guy comes to India for vacation, sees a couple of girls and then marries.Well, as the discussion went on, we went to to tell a few stories which we had heard. Then came one story, there is a working couple, the girl's family needed some money and the guy asked why she was sending money to her parents. Few months back, when I was with roomies we had a similar discussion.

One girl said, she should have told him that its none of his business. I would have vouched for this, if I wasnt married and dint know what it meant to be married. I am not trying to say what anybody said was wrong. I am just trying to tell that, certain problems dont have clear cut solutions. Also, the way you look at things might change after you are married. Well, if people claim that they know how things change once you are married, or who say "I have lot of married friends and I know how they think". Trust me, you can only see the surface of whats between them. However good or bad the relationship seems, its only the surface. Its obvious the couple dont tell you their best or worst times. Like any thing else in this world, you have to experience this, to know it. There are certain things which we pledge not to change in our lives, but we do later, not due to the pressure, just because the situation is such, and we want to do it for our loved one.

There is a very popular saying in which it seems Girls say to the husband - "Your money is my money, my money is my money". Well whoever said this, I have one question for you. What happened to all that "women are equal to men"? First thing, if ladies want to spend the money on their family, go ahead, there is nothing wrong, but there is nothing wrong in discussing this with your partner. If you feel thats wrong, then stop checking your partner's bank balance Its none of your business too. Isn't it unfair on the guy, that he has to account for everything and ladies shouldn't be questioned. Ofcourse I do agree in our society guys are not questioned for a lot of things, but we are, so ladies also shouldnt have these obstacles or vice versa. I agree to that too. Lets do something, were both can come to agreeable terms.

Ofcourse, all the discussion can happen only if the guy is understanding enough. If, he is being a nut case and denying it, then you can think of different solution. But on the first place, before marraige did both of them discuss on this aspect. These days, be it love or arranged, girl and guy usually get a chance to talk to each other. If not personally, they atleast interact through other media. So, instead of asking which colour they like, or what is the favourite vacation spot, can't both of them discuss topics like these, which matter more. Wont this help you in choosing your life partner than the colour or vacation spot. I agree that you cant start off with such things. But once you reach a comfort zone, cant these be discussed? There are a lot of things which cant be discussed, since we can never anticipate what problems we might face. But whatever comes to your mind at that point of time, which is practical.

Today, most of the girls are financially independent. But when you are getting married, are you not committing yourself to your life partner. We still expect the girl to do the household work, along with careers. We fight for this, saying guys also need to participate. Some guys might claim that its not their part and that in the rules of marraige (if any), girls do this work. We girls, protest and some times get it our way, where there is distribution of work. Inspite of this, why do some of us still think that guys should provide. Is this not hypocrisy? Shouldnt this relationship inspite of financial independence, have the emotional dependency.
G always says there is always a difference between independence and freedom. We need to realize this difference.

Coming back to finance. This is my funda is "Your money is our money and my money is also our money".

Its said that Love is magic. Its also said "Falling in love is very easy. Staying in love is difficult". Getting into the wedlock is easier, staying in the marraiges is a 24*7 occupation. I may not have decades of experience in this, but half a decade of commitment and an year + of marraige has taught me this. And it takes a couple to keep this going. So, its better to sort this financial issue as early as possible. Comeon, dont you have other problems to work on... Like who's gonna ccok today :)

Friday, September 18, 2009

To eat or not to eat

I dont remember a time when I have liked Cauliflower. Sometime when I was young, I associated this vegetable with human brain. I still dont know why, but after that, I hav never ever liked anything made of this vegetable. I would rather eat plain rice, chapati with ketchup instead of Gobi sabzi. My mom tried several tricks so that I could eat this. But the moment I saw this vegetable in any dish, I used to throw a tantrum and never ate it.

Years later, once when mom tried Gobi Paratha, I liked this vegetable a little bit. Ofcourse, this was because, the vegetable was kinda mashed and I couldnt see the florets. Then one day we went to one of the fast food joints (The shanti sagar types). We had gobi manchurian as an appetizer. I tasted one, with reluctance and then there is no looking back. Gobi manchurian is my favorite appetizer ever.

It seems strange that I still hate anything else made of this vegetable, unless it very finely chopped and I cant see the florets. But Gobi manchurian, I can have it any time of the day. Its very sad that, most of the Indian restaurants in US, dont serve this. In India, we categorize this in chinese dishes. But I have never seen it in Chinese menu either. May be it completely Indian and just because we have Soy Sauce, we call it Indo-Chinese. Anyway, for all I care, I love this and was missing it a lot in US.

Since I am on the cooking spree, I tried this at home. And I must say, it was awesome, it was 99% like the ones we get in India...

Here's a pic of what we ate. G loved it. We finished the whole plate in a few minutes.


Pooris were our favourite when we were kids. We could gobble up the hot pooris anytime of the day. Those were the days, when people were not obsessed with fat-nonfat, oooo will I become fat sort of things.

Mom used to make excellent round and fluffy pooris. I used to love bursting the those. We would have it with Chole, Rajma, Sagu,Aaloo sabji. There were times when we had it with cabbage, beetroot sabjis too. Mom realized that she could get us to eat vegetables which we dint like with pooris. She then started making palak and beetroot, green pooris, red pooris so yummy and healthy too.

Well, it had been days since we ate pooris. I was trying out some new curry for chapatis. And then thought, why not make pooris instead. So this became our lunch for the day.

Poori and Pitla.


Pitla it seems is a Maharashtrian dish. Its made of Chickplea flour,onion, tomatoes and spices. Seems, its usually eaten with Bhakri.

Well I just made a poori-pitla combination and it tastes yummy :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Hooked.. booked.. cooked

I happened to see a programe "First Ladies". Its all about the wives of famous people. Anyway, in this show, there is a section "HOOKED BOOKED and COOKED".

Now I can understand what HOOKED means, probably who proposed whom... I didnt understand what BOOKED means...
Finally, whos' getting COOKED. Well, I think in any marraige, it takes both of them as to how the life goes on... So both of them get cooked. And I must say, as time goes, and cooking is on, there is a fanatastic aroma and an awesome taste. The same way, once the couple are cooked with spices of life, the relationship just gets better and better.

Well, it takes both the partners for a successful marraige. HOOKED, BOOKED or COOKED, as long as both of them work on it, that is all matters.

Cooking expeditions...

When I first came to US all I knew was to cook some basic stuff. There was lot of work pressure those days. So cooking time was like relaxing time. I used to call Mom and ask for new reciepes. Slowly I learnt more about cooking. There were times when the food used to be a little messed up. The saviour would again be mom. I would tell her the problem, and she would give me a solution. This way, I learnt some tricks and tips too.

Recently, I developed this interest of trying new reciepes again. So, I tried to make some Khandvi 2-3 weeks back. It was pretty simple to make, but only problem I had was to flatten it. I succeded to some extent, and it was tasty. To add in my touch, I sprinked some sprouted green moong. We enjoyed a nice evening snack :)


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Krishna nee Begane Baaro

Krishna Janamashtmi has always been my favorite festival since the time I have known myself. This is one day in the whole year, where I can sacrifice food and even water until dinner time. Last year we were in India for this festival. At G's place its not celebrated at a grand scale. The previous night G dropped me to mom's house and the next day, it was celebrated at the usual grand scale.

At home its usually celebrated like this. This pic was taken in 2005, the first year I missed the celebrations.

This year, I wanted to celebrate it with as much resources available here. And it was not bad at all. We set up the mantapa, decorated with flowers and fruits.

I made doodh peda, coconut burfi and kachoris for the pooja.

We did the panchamrutha abhisheka and then the pooja.

On the whole we had a nice pooja, and I was very happy.


At first, we thought of inviting friends that day for dinner. Since I was busy in the morning, preparing the sweets and making the other decorations, we thought it would be better to invite the next day.
The next day we had friends for dinner. It was complete fun. I had made vegetable puff, paneer-cucumber-tomato salad, bisibelebhat, veg-tofu fried rice, puliogre. And, I hope all of them enjoyed the dinner.We played UNO (card game). After dinner, we played Dumb Charades. All of us had nice fun. After the tiresome, Friday and Saturday, we had quite a relaxing Sunday, and we ended our weekend with a movie.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Koi roko na

This song was playing in the background, and I was telling this story to G, the nth time.

Its still so fresh in my mind...

Golden days :)

Aane waala pal.. jaane waala hai

Aane waala pal.. jaane waala hai.. hosake to isme...

This is a very famous song from Golmaal (1979)

The movie itself is awesome. Its entertaining till the end, and I have watched this multiple times
This is the title song and I used to love this song Golmaal hai

12 years back, I knew the screenplay of this movie. But at that time, I hadnt noticed the aane waala song much, until somebody sang this.

We had been to a Himachal trek when in school. Our camp leader was a very good singer. One evening when all of us were enjoying the camp fire, we all requested him to sing. He announced that he is gonna sing a song from Golmaal, I thought it would be the title song, since it suited the situation etc etc. But then he started singing this. It was awesome listening to the song.

Aane waala pal

The next time I saw the movie, I waited for this song. I realized that somehow i had never noticed this song in the movie.

Sometimes in life there are certain things we never notice, but when someone else recognizes it, thats when we realize, it was there all the while. We just failed to notice it.