Monday, July 23, 2012

Farewell, India!

Almost three months ago now, I was recruited to do a project in Texas and moved back to the States on less than a week's notice.  It was quite a rushed move and an intense project.  Boaz is still in India, he'll come back when his contract is up, sometime in September.  I loved my time in India and would definitely do it again, but it turns out I was also ready to come home.

So, a very fond farewell to India and an until next time to my readers.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Udaipur 2

Even in Pune, even after 9 months in India, I am still pretty rapt just by the view out the side of the rickshaw, and Udaipur was no exception.   The cows in Udaipur do look particularly healthy though.  Pune sees more water buffalo and garbage.



My next destination was Udaipur.  It looked like it would be beautiful and relaxing and exceeded all expectations.  I lucked out with a great auto rickshaw driver from the train station who showed me around and invited me to dinner with some other tourists.  In the end I extended my stay to over a week!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Hey!  Haven't been posting lately.  I've been looking for work, which isn't very interesting.  At the moment I am travelling India for about a month, which keeps me away from the internet.  My first destination was Jaipur.  Excuses and long stories, I didn't get too many photos there, but I did have a good time.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


I've mentioned before the lines of people you see doing manual labor.  Here are the landscaping ladies in their sari uniforms, sweeping up the grass clippings at Sula's resort.  At least they had a mechanical lawnmower.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Weight loss

Shama's weight loss tips:  Sleep on your stomach for 10 or 15 minutes in the morning.  Apparently her doctor recommended this after her c-section 18 years ago?  Drink hot water.  I only know this as a Jewish remedy for nausea.  And nausea seems like it could be an asset to weight loss.

One of the things I wanted to do while on this sabbatical thing was lose some weight.  I'm embarrassed to say I don't feel like it's been going well.  I have been working out regularly when not sick, but I've been sick a lot.  I think I also expected to walk more, which isn't always practical here.  And let's face it, I'm pretty lazy.  I also really like food.  Haven't really curbed that at all, but am glad there are no Taco Bells for Boaz to suggest deliciously, shamefully unhealthy food.  But McDonald's delivers.  Sigh.

It isn't all bad news.  Progress is being made, apparently.  To refer to the situation as 'muffin top' might be an understatement, but I did get myself into the pants I wore on our first date almost 3 years ago.  So there's that.  Maybe it's safe to unpack the scale now.

How India Sees the World

(Click to biggify)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Revamped articles page

The articles page was getting pretty unwieldy.  I've added dates and tried to categorize the articles.  Did you know that categories are basically never mutually exclusive?  It was harder than it sounds.  For now the new categories are 'Light and Funny', 'Life Culture and the Arts', 'Politics and History', 'Economy Education and Development', 'Health and Environment'.

I am also deeply sad to report that Playboy has taken down all their archived interviews, like the one with Jawaharlal Nehru while he was still Prime Minister of India.  There were a ton of interesting things there not related to India too.  I've e-mailed them to complain.  If you're like me and read Playboy for the 40 year old interviews, you should whine too.

Mystery Produce Episode 8 - Banana Flower

Yesterday we checked out the mega supermarket at a new mall nearby.  In the produce section (which includes Western fresh herbs like thyme, rosemary, basil, yay!) I saw a pile of big, purple, conical, husky things.  So obviously I bought one.  It's a banana flower.  Peel away the husks and little banana fetus tubes and eventually you get to the pale yellow, edible part.  It's apparently a pretty common vegetable in Asia.

I made a little salad, inspired by this recipe (and cute write-up on banana flowers).  I should have discarded another layer or two of the leaves.  Our salad was a tad bitter, but still pretty tasty.  Hard to go wrong with lime juice, fruit jam, soy sauce, chili powder, ginger/garlic paste and cilantro tossed with Chinese fake meat, topped with fried shallots and roasted peanuts.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Weekend at Sula Vineyards

We spent a lovely weekend at Sula Vineyard's Beyond Resort.   We didn't travel more than a few kilometres from the vineyard or a few feet from the booze, so there aren't many pictures.  It was darn picturesque though, as you can see.  The room was very comfortable.  I was pleased with the food too (all meals are included).  I didn't try any of the continental fare, but the Indian offerings were tasty without being heavy.

The Nashik Valley is littered with vineyards and wineries.  We did a tasting at Sula, but are already very familiar with their wines.  Wine pickings in India are pretty slim and Sula is a widely available, palatable choice.  I've been drinking a lot of Sula.   We also visited York's tasting room.  York's wines were a little more distinctive, a welcome departure and lately my go-to wine.  We especially liked their late harvest chenin blanc.