Akki Roti and The Coorg Flavour

Coorg – popularly known as Scotland of India. Tucked deep within the Western Ghats, this tiny little district of Karnataka is lush green, with beautiful coffee and spice plantations. It took me about 3 hours by road from Mangalore to Chitala (a quaint little town near Madikeri), where I spent three memorable days. The Kodavas are a hospitable lot-warm and friendly. The have their age old customs and traditions which they follow till date. Their cuisine has a unique taste and texture to it, which must be experienced if you are in this part of the country. Having grown up

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Cantonment life!

Do you know the most boring time in a Fauji wife’s life? It is when she decides to stay back in the cantonment with her two kids during summer vacation, and the husband is out on duty for the entire period. And I am presently in such a situation. Life inside a cantonment It is a different world all-together. Neatly laid out roads, clean and peaceful environs, auditoriums, sports complexes, schools within, sometimes our own golf course, and of course the Officers Institute to spend time with friends in the evenings. Cantonments with their ambience form the basis of our

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Winning over those cold Russian days- I am More Indian Than You Think!

The wind was cold and harsh. Despite the heavy jacket, it seemed to cut through every muscle of my body. As the snow fell on the cobbled streets of Moscow, I cursed myself for having volunteered for the eighteen month long assignment, in the capital city of Russia. Much to my mother’s displeasure, I had packed my bags, knowing very well the temperature in winters could touch as low as -15 degrees centigrade!!! As I stepped out of the Domadevo Airport, armed with the one Russian phrase I knew- здравствуйте (“How are you?”), the gargantuan city of Moscow, simply took

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Pick that Perfect Apartment in Jaipur

Jaipur, the state capital of Rajasthan, is culturally rich and one of India’s finest cities. With a great heritage, the city attracts millions of tourists every year. Today the pink city is considered as one among the ten mega cities of India. No wonder the real estate market in Jaipur is flourishing, with all the infrastructural development the city is witnessing, and its proximity with the capital city of Delhi. Jaipur is situated on the Delhi- Mumbai Highway, and the city boasts of a well-planned road and railway network. The city is a part of the golden triangle with adequate education, hospitality and

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Ajanta Caves- Art Beyond Imagination

It was the summer of 1819. Captain John Smith, a young Cavalry Officer, along with a party of British hunters, was tracking down a tiger. In the thick forest of Aurangabad in Maharashtra, the animal’s footprints led them straight past a cavity in a rock face. They soon found themselves in front of a manmade façade, cut into the rock face. As the hunting party slowly made its way inside, a burning torch in hand, they were left spellbound. ’Coz what lay in front, was a long hall with octagonal pillars and a circular dome. All over the walls were

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New Cars in Philippines From Tata Motors

Tata Motors’ vehicles have been in great demand in the Philippines since 2014. The low cost of ownership and availability of diesel vehicles makes the cars, utility vehicles and cargo vehicles an integral part of the country’s transport sector. Philippines- an archipelago in South-East Asia has one of the most beautiful terrains. Wonderful beaches are just part of one of the world’s longest coastlines. Over a hundred ethnic groups, with a mixture of foreign influences, there is a fusion of cultures here. In this beautiful country, Tata Motors offers commercial vehicles and brand new cars in Philippines, at great prices. Users

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The Road is My Therapist!

I found the road by mistake. I decided to go out for a brief drive on Sunday morning and suddenly found myself itching for some more alone time, driving on NH-66. I had intended to explore a spice garden I had heard good things about. Terrain less explored I sure am lucky to be living in a small town on the Konkan coast of India. A terrain less explored, the district of Uttar Karnataka is lush green, with hills and valleys on one side and the lashing waves of the Arabian Sea on the other. I live inside a beautiful Cantonment,

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A Page from Chennai And its Mega Stores

It sure does take a great deal of research to make a movie with a realistic story. I recently watched one such Tamil movie called Angadi Theru (Eng: Market Street). This heart wrenching movie revolves around life in a mega-sized store on one of Chennai’s busiest streets-one which is literally home to countless men, women, shops, and businesses. Life on Ranganathan Street If you have ever been to Chennai’s Ranganathan Street and shopped at the all famous Saravana Stores, you would understand exactly what I am talking about. Not only in Chennai, but cities across the state of Tamil Nadu

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Travel to Israel to Experience Happiness, Faith and Life

If there is one unique thing that stands out in Israel, it is the diversity the country holds within it. Exuberant in every way, the beautiful people and place seem as though they are all out of a grand epic. Vibrant cultures, traditions, art and culinary that fills your heart with joy. The desert and the sea, together, make it a surreal world for the tourist exploring it. At the intersection of Asia, Europe and Africa, lies Israel, a congruence of cultures, empires and religions since time immemorial. It bears the cradle of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. One can immerse

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The Life & Times of a City that was Once Bangalore

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful city called Bangalore. It was calm, peaceful and boasted of salubrious weather throughout the year. And then the unforeseen happened. The city was struck by bad governance, corruption and an uncontrolled growth of the concrete jungle. What followed is traffic jams, garbage piles at every corner and poor infrastructure support for the common man. Not to forget the dwindling green spaces, that once earned the city the title of “Garden city”. I still remember the day I left Bangalore in 2005. As my flight took off from the old Bangalore airport, I

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When in Delhi, Mehendi the Dilli Way

There’s something about these Mehendiwalas in Delhi. With a fabulous imagination of dazzling designs, and dexterity in skills, they are surely unmatched.  Generally migrants from nearby places such as Rajasthan, Varanasi or Agra, all that these guys need to invest in are a couple of cones containing the mehendi mixture, two low lying stools/moda and try to manage a bit of space in a bustling market place. And it would be business time for them. However harsh the weather is- well Delhi could touch 45 degrees centigrade in summer and drop as low as 5 degrees centigrade in winters- these guys

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Pickles- They Sure Do Tickle!!

It was a sweltering hot afternoon when I reached my mom’s home in Chennai. I was exhausted, my throat parched and my clothes soaking in sweat. In the dead of summer, my appetite almost always seems to diminish. But well you know how moms seldom agree to this. “You’ve got to eat something otherwise you would fall sick”, she said. “At least eat some curd rice. I have made fresh lemon pickle”. Ah! The South Indian in me came out totally. I was already drooling over the tanginess of the pickle. I agreed to eat curd rice, just for the

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Adrenaline Rush at Rishikesh

For those who seek a bit of adventure in their lives, here is a perfect holiday destination. Take a break from that hectic life of yours and experience white water rafting in the pristine surroundings of Rishikesh. And trust me it would leave you asking for more! Fear not, ‘cause the best part of river rafting is that you don’t have to be an experienced swimmer. Just follow a few safety instructions and you could have the best time of your life. So wash your fears away and be ready to jump into the strong currents of the Ganges. The

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Golden Temple…Golden Moments

Lucky was I to get an opportunity to spend a few hours inside the Golden Temple at Amritsar. The most sacred place of worship for the Sikhs, the “Harmandir Sahib or the Darbar Sahib”- as it is otherwise known, taught me some golden lessons of life.  As I walked in through the main entrance of the Golden Temple, I stood mesmerized- by its sheer beauty, the sereneness despite the sea of humans (the Golden Temple receives over a lakh visitors on a daily basis), and the faith that lay in abundance all around me. There were rules and it was

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Yippee for the Yatra!! #AtoZChallenge

Yippee!! I just won a “ticket”- not a lottery or a lucky dip, but a rail ticket! The best way to get to places in India is through our very own Indian Railways. Train journeys well become the reason to travel many a times, especially when you have small children, who enjoy climbing up and down the narrow blue berth. The Indian railways is the third largest passenger rail network in the world, comprising 115,000 km of track over a route of 65,808 km  and a whopping 7,112 stations.   YET, WHY DOES IT HAVE TO BE SO DIFFICULT TO GET A

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Wedding Bells in India #AtoZChallenge

Weddings in India are a multi-day affair, loaded with rituals and celebrations. No matter which part of the country you belong to, or the religion you follow, you just cannot escape the grandeur it holds. Indian weddings are typically divided into pre-wedding, the main ceremony and post-wedding. So if you do get to attend one, be prepared to soak in a lot of excitement, fun and good food. But what’s most surprising is the fact that, even though there may be a whole lot of similarities in rituals across the country, when you look deep within, every region has certain

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Jakamma & Your Fortunes! #AToZChallenge

Josiyam paakkareengala (want your fortune told?)”, she asked me. As I sat with my legs stretched out in the cool sand of Marina Beach in Chennai, I was approached by a 40-something lady. She was clad in a simple cotton sari, a wire basket in one hand and a black staff in another. Her hair was well-oiled, confined in a bun. I have never really been inclined to any sort of astrology or fortune reading in my life. Never really found any logic in them and always stayed away from them. But that evening on Marina beach, seeing the plight of

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Ecological Practices in a School #AtoZChallenge

Ecological practices that are good are of utmost importance if we want to give a better world to our future generation. Here is a one of a kind school that has some of the best ecological and sustainability practices, and aims to groom children into better citizens of the world. Amidst the Palani hills of Tamil Nadu, in the lush green terrain of Kodaikanal is the quaint “Sholai School”. This is no ordinary school. For here, children learn with no fear or stress. There aren’t any awards, nor are they any punishments. There aren’t any exams nor is there a

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Courier that Runs on Faith #AtoZChallenge

Courier services almost always charge you a sum for delivering goods.  But here is a unique and indigenous courier service in India that relies, not on sophisticated delivery networks or money, but entirely on faith. Situated amongst the thick Sal forests on NH 215, around 45 kms from Keonjhar in Ghatagaon,Odisha, is the Maa Tarini Temple.  This temple receives close to twenty thousand coconuts every day, going up to a lakh on festive days. The temple is highly revered and the devotees of the Goddess Maa Tarini consider her to be all powerful. So how does a temple such as

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