Espresso Maker.

When I was in Chennai in February for a family re-union, I stayed with Sheela and Mohan, my cousin and his wife and was spoilt silly by them. During that stay, Mohan kept me going with some excellent coffee and would not share his secret of making that particular coffee till almost the last day of my stay there. After much persuasion, he finally shared his secret and introduced me to this wonderful gadget.
coffee maker

It is a Cucina Pro Aluminum Stove Top Espresso Maker which is simple to use and gives some excellent coffee. I got this imported and supplied by an online merchant by late February and since then have been enjoying some excellent coffee and also making the same for visitors who too appreciate it. Luckily, I can get very good quality coffee powder in the neighbourhood Cafe Coffee Day, without too much difficulty and that is a great advantage as otherwise, I would have had to go to the city to get it.

It is a pity that Mohan does not have an Olga. Otherwise, that machine will not be able to keep me away from parking myself with him at Chennai for long durations.


A Matter Of Perspective.


(Overheard at Cafe Coffee Day – PLEASE READ TILL THE END) Cafe Coffee Day is the Indian equivalent of Starbucks.


Boy : It is a failed state I tell you ! They just had an election but nothing will change – just wait and see they will not be able to pass any meaningful laws and bills to alleviate the suffering of it’s people . They will continue spending on arms and the Army despite being broke with a huge external debt !

Girl : Yes I agree

Boy : We have invited their leader once again but it will lead to nothing I tell you ! They will never change – they are the most selfish nation on earth – no wonder nobody likes them .

Girl : Hmm

Boy : The culture of violence continues every single day – shootings , bombings , kidnappings , killing of innocent people including women and children ; even teachers & school kids are not spared .

Girl : Yes terrible !

Boy : Not satisfied with that they regularly send their people to kill innocents in other countries also!

Girl : Yes , dreadful !

Boy : And they hob nob with China shamelessly !

Girl : Shocking !

Boy : The pity is they have such great culture , music , food , art , brains and natural resources – what a waste !

Girl : Tsk tsk !

Boy : Their human rights record is pathetic – they jail people without a trial in secret jails and torture them , discriminate against minority communities ( though the leader is also from a minority community ) , don’t pay women equal wages etc

Girl : Really ? I did not know that .

Boy : And the tragedy is that they do not protect their poor people from repeated natural calamities especially if it happens in the poorer belts .

Girl : So sad !

Boy : Yes it’ true . I wonder why anyone in their right minds would want to go there – it is a completely FAILED STATE !

Girl : I agree , Pakistan is a failed state !

Boy : Pakistan ? Who said anything about Pakistan ? I am talking about USA ! Didn’t you hear anything I have been saying ? I am not paying the bill for this coffee !

Thank you Fly-On-Cafe-Coffee-Day’s-Wall.

At a time when changes to the the immigration policy of the USA stand to affect or have an effect on Indian diaspora or wannabe emigres, this comes as a refreshing change.

Broken City.

It is Russell Crowe season and when Mark Wahlberg is thrown in as a bonus, I could not resist the temptation. I had seen the former in another film just a few days ago!

I saw Broken City yesterday as part of an indulgent lazy day for myself.

To start with, I landed up at the multiplex half an hour before the start of the film and spent 25 minutes in a cafe having excellent Capuccino and Curry Puffs. I did this exact thing just about a year ago and it was like déjà vu!

Cafe Coffee Day has come a long way during the interim and now offers free Wi Fi! I think that I should go there more often and do some of my blogging there! If I can get myself a tablet, that should be possible.
Cafe Coffeday

The film was gripping and if instead of New York we can have Mumbai, this story can come alive in our part of the world too. Both the actors who had persuaded me to see the film did not let me down. For those who like Crime flims, this is a good see.

I followed the film with lunch at a new restaurant called Tikka Town in a mall called Inorbit.


Had some delectable biriyani, assorted kebabs and rounded it all off with some great gulab jamuns. Sorry, I was too hungry to take photographs of the food!

The lazy indulgent day continued when I returned home for a nice two hour siesta!

Gratitude List – February 4, 2012

On Saturday, Ranjan installed a brand new Mac Mini for me, replacing the old one which was slowing down and behaving oddly on and off.

Manjunath and Anju came over and brought home grown and dried lima beans. called double beans here.

Most importantly, my idli life line Chittan came back from his holidays and reported for duty.

Sunday saw Chittan the idli man deliver much to the delight of my father who had had enough of the idlies made by me.

My ex colleague and friend Prasad came over for a visit and to consult about some career matters. It was nice to feel wanted and still respected!

Ranjan found the time to finish the installation of the computer and by late Sunday evening, the new computer with all the old applications became functional.

Mangal had taken leave of absence for two days and Monday was my turn to cook for the three of us. I cooked minced lamb with garlic, boondi raita with potatoes and a green peas pulao. From what was left over, it was obvious that my cooking achieved its purpose.

Instead of cooking on Tuesday, I decided to get food delivered and since there was a special offer available at the neighbourhood Pizza Hut, ordered for some pizzas, pasta and roles. My father thoroughly enjoyed the treat and I was happy to have some change after such a long time. Mitali came to share our lunch with us and brought frozen desserts which was another treat!

Wednesday had me frantic with worry about having deleted most of the folders in my mail program by mistake. When he woke up Ranjan sorted it out in a jiffy and I heaved a sigh of relief when the whole lot was restored.

Mangal extended her LOA and I cooked some unglamorous food and supplemented that with some left overs. It went off well though!

A new restaurant has opened for business about 300 Mts from our home and I went to check it out. As I entered the compound, I had to navigate a couple of steps down from the pavement. The steps were laid with shiny brand new marble. My right elbow crutch slipped as I leaned on it to climb down and I almost fell. Luckily, there were two watchmen who were welcoming me who held me before I took a tumble and I was saved. I suffered a bit of a sprain on the left leg as a result, but that was a small price to pay for the lesson learnt about the shiny marble surfaces. I am very grateful to those two stalwarts for saving me from a fall which could have caused complications to my recovery.

On Thursday, I went to a cafe and to a movie about which I have blogged in detail. I am just grateful to the baristas who gave me special attention as well as the staff at the multiplex who arranged special seating and exit facilities for me seeing me use the elbow crutches.

Friday was anticlimax. Mangal returned to duty and it was nice to have home made food after three days. On my way to the park I met the son of a dear friend who brought me uptodate on the health condition of my friend. Shall visit anon.

Progress! I Saw A Movie.

In my Intentions-2012 post I had written about getting out of the house more than I did last year.

Yesterday, I went out to check out a new restaurant that has opened near our home and I had a bit of adventure there about which you will read in my Weekly Gratitude List come this Saturday.

Today, I went to a multiplex to see a movie which has received great reviews. I preceded the movie with a visit to Cafe Coffee Day, which is the Indian equivalent of the American Starbucks. I had absolutely mind blowing cappuccino and traipsed across to the multiplex to see “The Descendants” starring George Clooney.

And, as icing on the cake, I had the delightful company of Mitali who is no stranger to my readers.

I saw a movie after almost ten years and it was a great rediscovery of going to the movies. For those who have not seen the movie, I strongly recommend “The Descendants”. It is a family drama and the cast without exception perform brilliantly, taking an ordinary story to great heights.

Now that I have discovered the joy of modern movie going experience, I intend viewing many more in the days to come.