Thursday, December 18, 2008

Filter coffee

South Indian Filter coffee

I will laugh in your face if you think Nescafe is good. I will laugh even harder if you go to Barista or Coffeeday for your daily dose of caffeine. And finally, I will roll on the floor with laughter if you actually enjoy the coffee that comes out of the corner machine at your office.

You must have never had good ol fashioned filter coffee - served in a steel cup. If you haven't, please do come home, you are missing out on something truly amazing. I've met many foreigners who dare to sample the filter coffee, and unfortunately, can't handle it. Yes, too many cups do a stomach ache make! Why? Because its pure! No adulterated beans for us down south! I've always found it interesting how South Indians drink coffee all day whereas North Indians drink tea all day. One never need directly ask where a newcomer is from. We can just ask , Coffee ya Chai? Enough of a background check!

Now I do understand that we can't all sit and make filter coffee at home all day. Anyone who wants to give it a try is sure to get great samples at many of the popular small darshinis in Bangalore. Some of my favourites include Brahmins (famous for its idly vada chutney) in Chamrajpet, behind ShankarMatt and SN in JP Nagar. These are small places where you will get your coffee piping hot in a steel cup and saucer. I love pouring my coffee in and out of the saucer to cool it down. Then it feels ready to drink!

If you want somewhere a little nicer where you can sit peacefully and drink it in some style, I would suggest Kalmane coffees. They have a great variety of filter coffees with a few add-ons such as cinnamon (A must try!) .

Now I must go find for myself some filter coffee!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Me on Traffic

Bangalore traffic - two words that sends horrendous shivers down any resident's spine. Mindnumbing jams, an inability to judge how long it will ever take to move from point to point (as it changes every day) are a normal part of every Bangaloreans lifestyle.

It's quite funny in many ways. Every single day I go from home to office, and it almost never takes the same amount of time!Some days I am over half an hour early, and some days I make it just in time. The reason behind this is mystical. I'm sure that on the route from home to office between 8-9 its the same people everyday who are moving in the same direction. So what happens to change the time it takes? Is it one single external factor - a new truck driver who gets stuck somewhere? Is it someone's frustration who one day is in a hurry and breaks a red light, jamming the junction for ages ? Why is it so complicated? Are we all so uneducated? If we are able to learn how to drive, and get a license (albeit under often slightly questionable circumstances) , why cant we do things such as "practice lane driving". After all, ants do!!

The tragedy is that I feel very passionately about this, and I used to be very strict in following rules such as show my indicator to switch lanes, stick to the right lane, stop for yellow lights. But I can see myself slowly going towards the either side of the spectrum, wherein I am not always 100% rule adhering! I really don't want to fall into that group!!! I've seen recently many incentives which might help me, and other kooks like me, stay on the right path (no pun intended!). So, do have a look - it might just help us look forward to our daily drives!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Namma vooru, Bengaluru

I live in Bangalore, in my opinion, despite all the complaints and the ruckus, the best place to live in India. Maybe I don't have much scope for comparison, because its the only place I've ever lived in India but still! I have travelled quite a bit, to Mumbai, Hyderabad, Delhi, and Chennai and I have my own opinions on each.

Mumbai is insanely fast...a great place to visit and party, but I think I might go crazy running around with that intensity in such humidity!

Hyderabad, at this point to me, does not appear to have much character outside of the insanely delicious biryani. There are not many hangouts, and the once magnificent monuments such as Golkonda fort and the Char minar are in need of a lot of attention. I did have a fabulous visit though . Safdarjung museum is a treasure trove of exciting things and a real fallback to a previous area. Ramoji film city was a great way to spend the day and really exciting to actually see sets from specific movies!

Delhi is amazing for shopping - there's nothing you can't get there, nor any budget thats not workable. The chaat's and snacks are yum, definitely not the kind of flavours you'll find here in Bangalore - jalebi in Karolbagh, or paneer tikka in Sundernagar - slurp! However, moving around in Delhi if you;re not fluent in Hindi is a problem. People will be trying to take you for a ride at each and every corner and safety is an issue. Part of what I like about Delhi is the fact that fashion trends are much more up to date and you can wear a lot of interesting things without getting any stares, however this is also fueling the slightly superficial elements of society.

Chennai is madness! Although yes, the infrastructure is better than Bangalore's, firstly there's no way to get around without knowing Tamil. People have been downright rude when they realise you're not from around there, although I do have many great tamilian friends! Chennai doesnt offer much to do, very few hangouts and nowhere much to shop. A good place probably for planning day trips as a lot of amazing culture does surround the area for example to Kanchi to see the saree making or the famous temple. Madurai temple is the most beautiful and inspiring temple I've ever seen.

Now I'm not saying Bangalore doesn't have its problems, because it sure does, but at the end of the day, I've not met anyone from anywhere who's not been able to adjust in our beautiful city! :)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

To blog or not to blog

So blogging seems to have hit the world in a huge way. Some blogs actually have practically a cult following. It's crazy. I've seen some of the really popular blogs, and I'm not really sure what they write about, but it seems to work for their followers. I suppose the same can be said about books. You never know what qualifies as a best seller, and what it is that appeals to the masses. It's something worth an analysis in fact! I've heard that blogging is truly an art and I must agree. Anyone can write a bunch of nonsense and post it on a site. But not anyone can write something somebody else looks forward to reading. And if thats not an art I'm not sure what is. Its interesting though how fast our mediums are changing. From real books to e-books, from editorial columns in papers to online blogs.

Imagine what would happen if the internet just stopped working some day. Would we be able to go back to our "hard copies" and "snail mail" or just sit stunned until the net is back? I can't remember the last time I went to a post office or bought a stamp. Must be eons ago. I mean even if I sent something who would bother looking at it? I almost never get any mail except from banks,etc, so I pretty much assume the rest of my mail , even if genuine, must be junk. So oops and sorry to anyone who sent me a letter or a postcard recently, thats the reason I never replied!