Bannerghatta National Park – Bengaluru


Took my toddler to Bannerghatta National Park this sunday. We reached there only by 11 A.M. We saw bears,deers,lions, tigers in the safari trip. This time around we saw a lot lesser than what we saw last year. Last year we had tigers and bears walk right up to our enclosed van.. it was indeed a site to see !

I guess the best time to catch the safari bus is by 10A.M, its less crowded  and you get to see lot more animals in the safari .

We also enjoyed the hippos,monkeys and emphants!!! in the zoo.We fed the emphants some oranges too and some corn

…. a visit to a zoo is when you admire God’s creativity in making each one of us so different from the other. Like the crocodiles that we saw…. such intricate detailing on its body (scales) as if some carpenter did the carvings with utmost care !!

The laziest ones must be the hippos,with its huge body forver lying in the water.

..The safari costs 160/- per adult. The same ticket can be used for visiting the zoo.Children less than 5 years get to prance freely with the monkeys !

..and while in the safari bus, I couldn’t help but feel for a severe autistic blind boy in the bus. While all of us ooed and awwed at the animals(lions, tigers) etc …he couldn’t comprehend much of what was happening around him. He was definitely excited with all the noise and kept grunting loudly, only to be hushed by his care taker.Oh god !! If you did have to bring a baby into this world, why make it suffer like this …. Wish we had answers to such questions. Its unfair surely !!

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Of Suppandi,Noddy and more…


I am reeling under severe nostalgic wave these days and why not ! I am a piscean , that loves to live and dwell in the past

This weekend we went to buy some toys and I happened to set my eyes on a 3D book for toddlers.The story was about Noah’s arc with lot of animals , a carpenter at work building a boat, what with 3D hammers and axes that looked very real. The child can pull a tag and the axe would start working on the wood , imitating how a carpenter would cut a piece of log !! imagine your child getting to see a carpenter at work sitting right at your bedroom! And then loads of animals, a lot of monkeys( my son LOVES  monkeys …he being one himself 🙂

Pull a tag, the monkey would appear and then disappear! Truely delightful stuff !!

How I wish I had such stuff as a kid myself…….

And talking about books, I must mention all that my mom did to ensure me and my twin got the very best.On salary day for dad, she would ensure she got us the latest copy of Chandamaama from the only book shop we had in Neyveli. And then we had a monthly subscription to Target and Children’s world, two books that appeared at our door step every month !! and that was my only window to the outside world, I remember both the magazines had a pen friends section , having a pen friend was very in and happening in the 80’s

And then my elder sis took us to the only government library that our town had.While my sis enjoyed the Hindi novels(Premchand ..etc), me and my twin read a lot of Noddy,Nancy Drew, Enid Byton and the likes…..

In many ways, I am very thankful to my little town for all that it offered us.I guess we had a impressive collection for such a small town. I don’t know if any other parent in that town invested in reading and buying books( let me add, parents had very less salary to fend for 4 kids !!).My writing skills was way ahead of my classmates and  mostly reading Target helped improve my writing skills . I still vividly remember  the “Letters to the Editor ” section, even sending a letter once ! Let me add, ours was not a convent !!

My friend once told me “we can provide much more than our parents provided us ” . Somewhere ,I know that this is true what with better purchasing power but I will always hold to heart very dear the Chandamaama , Target and Childrens world books… and of course lots of those Suppandi cartoons.

Thiruvadirai Nostalgia…


I guess I can take the liberty to say that no one can beat the Tam-Brams when it comes to festivities and with each festival comes varities of food ! And don’t some of us ie the foodies associate festivals with the colorful food that is prepared. This weekend I was in awe of all the tasty delicacies that our attai pattis took time off to experiment and associate with each festival. So much so every month you end up eating some unique delicacy..

No wonder Samaithu Paar is a book that has 3 volumes !!

anyways…

I told my mom that I was coming to her place on Saturday.She said why not sunday because sunday happens to be Thiruvadirai and I used to love the kali she made for that occasion as a child.It has been very many years ( may be 17 or more??) since I tasted the kali. Not that I complain about love/intercaste marriages, but am sure anyone that has had a intercaste marriage would admit that the girls (mostly) miss out of all the goodies that they were used to eating. To my agony, the husband detests anything sweet, so dishes like the Kali are long forgotten and when reminded send a strong wave of nostalgia .

Unlike diwali or Pongal that are a little loud festivals, thiruvadirai is one of those lesser known festivals celebrated by the Tam Brahm community mostly known for the Kali and the kootu prepared .It is a little strange that the kootu which is a mix of 7 vegetables is served along with a sweet dish ie the Kali. I guess this is the only occasion where a salty gravy dish is placed along side a sweet rice preparation

On few weekends these days, I have been placing sweet potatoes on the gas top and while it is fully roasted, me and the son would peal it.He would sit on top of the dining table and we would relish the cooked potatoes together. Only while digging into the kootu yesterday , I realized that the appropriate place for the sweet potato is in the kali . It is one of the main veggies added into the kootu.

It is amazing how over the generations we have liberally exploited the seasonal veggies to churn out delicacies.

If you came here looking for the recipe, I must admit I am not good at all that, you can view the recipe here

signing off… still drooling….