May 26, 2005
The best thing about European countries is the chocolates. And my favorites is 'Malteasers'. What an amazing concept is this Malteasers!
It has a very wonderful chocolate coating with a malt kernel inside it. The moment I pop it in my mouth, it arouses my senses, and after the chocolate coating is sensed in competely, it's time for indulgence with the Malt itself. Lolitting the malt between different parts of cheek, teeth and tongue, it's sheer indulgence. Even before I realise it, it's all done. But the cherishing lingers on. Slowly when it starts wearing out, I know it's time for another one.
Eating malteasers is not addictive, but more of a passionate experience.
Best part about malteasers is that they are small, round balls. You don't have to worry about taking care of holding the bar of chocolate and all that. Pick one up, pop it up….
There is also a malteaser icecream - wonder how will that be!!!
May 10, 2005
Any staple Indian food loving person need not feel left out or starving on foods in UK, because in UK most of the supermarkets have ready-to-eat chapathi, naan, paratha and lot of Indian curries. Just pick them up, and heat in a microwave and presto - have a full-fledged Indian dish.
You would notice the chapathi or naan does not hold same taste as a home-made one, and may not get them at proper heat level to have a fluffy chapathi always. The curries might smack of oily, but not really close enough to our own curry.
Suddenly, serendipitously made a discovery that the following Mexican or western food items are actually similar to our own foods.
Tortillas - they are also made of wheat, but much softer. Gets really fluffy.
Mexican wraps - rumali roti types
Crumpets - Aappam
Pitta bread - Naan
Tomato onion dip - Thakkali vengayam thokku (ofcourse not as spicy as our food is)
And then we have Long grain rice that is like our normal rice in India. If specifically needed, the Thai jasmine rice is close to our Ponni raw rice. Good tomato thokku is available under the guise of Tomato Salsa Sauce! Beware, you have to add bit of pepper and salt.
There is Greek style yoghurt which is our curd, and if you need a curd closer to our sour taste, you could try Onken Yoghurt, or simply add sour cream to normal yoghurt. Sooji (Rava) is hidden under the name Semolina and sweet pepper is our capsicum
Best part about these stuffs is that they are made of same ingredients as our traditional Indian food items, and are closer to our taste, than the food items branded under ''Indian food items'' in UK.
What more do the veggies need???
May 09, 2005
It's been a long time - almost 6 months, since I am out of India and out of touch with Tamil TV channels. I miss the various junk that is telecast all day long in the channels - ranging from 'Ungal choice' to 'Neengal kaetta paadal' to 'Comedy time' and so on.
Can someone update me what's happening in Metti Oli? Has the story moved any further? Are all the daughters and sons-in-law of Chithambaram alive?
Engiruntho vandhal was a production from KB's stable after Sahana and Ethir neechal, what has the story been about? And how has it moved?
May 05, 2005
In fact, we got in touch with each other through blogs.
We studied from Class 6th to Class 12th in the same school – Hindu Senior Secondary School in Triplicane. After school, we lost touch with each other. Then when we completed our graduation, and waiting for next move to make – either PG or job. I was introduced by my friend to an agency that was contracting people to Ramco. But I couldn’t take up the job as I had just then got admission into MCA. This job was still available, and I met Chakra on the bus. It was after a 3 year time. We were generally talking, and I told him if he would be interested in looking if job is fine, and gave him the contact number. It was a mere 10 minute conversation.
And then, we lost touch again. He had written a letter to me telling me he had got job at Ramco. Unfortunately, I couldn’t respond to that.
Cut to recent past's recent past!
I was browsing dubukku's blog. I used to click at every person's link who leave a comment there. I had seen Chakra's comments, and went to Chakra's site. I did not know it was the same Chakra.
It was a very shocking site, because I could not minimise the site and read it. He had a big banner in top frame, and whatever I do, the frame would still be visible. It was not possible to thiruttuthanam-ly see the site in the workplace. I got so annoyed, and vowed never to visit this site again.
Cut to recent past!
Talk about fate. Dubukku was guest-editing some onsite Tamil blog, and he had inadvertently posted his family photo introducing the family members. I understand lot of casteist comments came for that photo from many fellow surfers, and he had removed the photograph. I was quite curious, how would a dubukku look like? So googled for the photo, and landed up at Chakra site. And followed by Dubukku family photos, there was a photo with Chakra carrying Dubukku's daughter. It just struck me I had seen this guy somewhere, I then mailed him to ask if he was the same Chakra whom I knew from school. That’s how our relationship got acquainted again.
Cut to recent!
When I came to UK, he gave lot of information – especially about various experiments with O2, calling cards and other premium line numbers to call India. He was very, very helpful. In fact, he was the first one to call me on my landline number at office. I didn't even know my number, he somehow found it out and let me know. I was very anxious with my first trip to a foreign country. His presence meant comfort. At least there is someone whom I know.
Cut to last week!
I was a bit apprehensive as to how it is going to be meeting him after long time. Maybe our aspirations had changed, maybe our attitudes changed, may be may be may be…so many may be's. Every thing was set to rest, the moment we met. We hit it off like those two Hindu Senior students we were 9 years back!
Chakra had not changed much – his attitude and drive still the same. His wittiness is good, and we could relate to each other quite well.
I was so happy to be with a school mate again. We were able to relive our school moments, few school gossips and it was just amazing. Chakra's multi-faceted personality was a revelation to me, and oh boy, I like him so much for that too.
He is also very patient and generous. He is a very good host, putting up with us. His house was so neat and tidy, we just littered the place with our kid's playtoys and all that. He took it with a smile.
My wife and son also felt very comfortable to acquaint with him.
The height of this meeting was enjoying Maya bazaar movie with him, passing comments and all that!
[I discovered a new recipe - French Fries sprinkled with chocolate powder tastes amazing]
May 03, 2005
It's not so unusual to have a vehicle fitted with a megaphone, and the party supporter reeling out long speech to campaign for the party and leader.
It is not so uncommon to hold election procession, affect traffic and hold big meeting to campaign for your party.
This is the usual election hungama in India.
But the thing which is so unnatural is that, all this happened in UK.
For national elections due this weekend, I saw a car with a megaphone, and two campaigners asking people to vote for Labour party in the heavily Asian populated East Ham in London.
Only 'Thaanai Thalaivar Annan Tony Blair' was missing.
Well, maybe it is just a matter of time, UK adopts itself totally to global Indian Election Code of (Mis)Conduct and (sub)standards. They are well on the path already - vote rigging, blasphemous personal remarks are quite common.
Chakra, you do have a good political future here in UK!