Saturday, April 30, 2011

Cafe Shillong

After consequent unsuccessful attempts made in search of basic food in Jowai, discovery of Cafe Shillong was like an achievement!! After about 25 long days of starvation and survival on bread butter and noodles, I was craving for a meal full of veggies! In the whole of Meghalaya, Shillong is the place for some variety in good veg food! Otherwise, loads of meat is available all over!

On one of the busy streets of Laitumkhrah area is where you will spot Cafe Shillong on the first floor of an ordinary building!

is what it makes!
We @ Cafe Shillong
Cozy Cuhions, wall display and the graffitiVeg Cheesy Burger and Veg Thukpa (Tibetan soup)
Black coffee and chocolate brownie!
Click on the menu for a bigger picture.
Short but delicious menu for the veggies and a slightly elaborate one for the non-veggies!! Best place to hog after super protein and vitamin deprivation in other parts of Meghalaya!
The best part of Cafe Shillong is free unlimited Wi-Fi! Superb food and free internet! What else do you need?!! :)
It was not just one but many AWESOME days @ Cafe Shillong! A must place to visit when in Shillong. And I know that Soumya Menon, Dhaneesh Jameson, Jisha Unnikrishnan, Anita Isola and Arunima Singh will second me on this!

Saturday Special: Full Wood House, Smit

Smit, is a small village about 15-20 km from Shillong. Well known for it's traditional Nongkrem Dance, Smit has beautifully preserved the Khasi culture and traditions.
Smit, till today follows a king-ship rule. The King is called the "Syiem" here. Today Morning, I had a chance to visit the Syiem's house. And being a Syiem's house, it is indeed very special...It is a huge, full wood- thatched house without any metal nails. Is'nt it interesting?!! Walls and floor made of oak and pine wood, with a thatched roof and roof windows for light, the house has a complete cane and bamboo furniture. Plus the floor coverings are also of woven cane and bamboo. Pleasant in summers and warm in winters!!
Well, believe me, the summers here are more chilled than the winters of Mumbai. But also, people say that, the warmth here has increased in past few years... the global warming shows its effects everywhere! :|

Coming back to the Syeim's house...
Here are few pictures I captured. Pardon me for the extra bad quality of pictures. (It was a cloudy and rainy morning!)
Thatched houses generally have a low ceiling and a narrow entrance. But this being a king's house, everything here is king size!
The pegs used are all wooden. It is a belief that devils and ghosts are always killed by wooden weaponry, hence using wooden pegs keeps the house safe and away from evil spirits. Also, Meghalaya is an earthquake prone area. The wooden pegs help keep the joinery more intact than the iron nails.
To get to the house, you have to drive through a boulevard fenced by conical pine trees on both sides. It is a beautiful place and Smit is one of the coolest places in Meghalaya!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Ferns and Petals

Just cannot resist taking pictures of flowers and leaves here! Yea... I'm still in Meghalaya! Place of sheer beauty and vivid nature!! Love the ferns and petals here..
A month back this place was mysterious, people were strangers, names were alien and language was tangent! But now about a month and half later, the place is limitlessly beautiful, people are friendly, names are familiar and language is logical.
There is a lot more more to this place...will keep posting in bits and pieces.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Earth Day

This picture shows one of the mesmerizing part of the earth in Meghalaya! Evergreen forest, ever flowing river and the suspension bridge to get the most of it! Crossed this and many such bridges on a 25 kilometer, eight hour walk from Saipung to Mualsei in the Jaintia Hills district.

Photograph by Dhaneesh Jameson. Find more photographs on his blog "through my snaps"

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wallpaper Wednesday

love BAMBOO love
Click on the image to download.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Motif Monday

Pine cones with the Fibonacci spirals!!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Bamboo Weaves

Bamboo, a very versatile natural material is in abundance here. Every thing from houses and furniture to plates and containers, tools and equipments is made of bamboo.
Bamboo Rocks and Bamboo Rules here!

Here are some woven structures used for the walls of houses.
Yo North East!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Chad Sukra

Today was the celebration of a local festival called Chad Sukra in Jowai. Jowai which boundaries within the Jaintia Hills district, is the second largest town in Meghalaya. Chad Sukra (chad meaning dance) is a spring pre-sowing festival celebrated by the Niamtres (non- Christians) of the Jaintias.
Dancing on the traditional beats and songs praying for a successful sowing of paddy and a fruitful harvest, everyone from kids to elders were dressed in the traditional wear of thohsaru- the black and white checkered waist cloth woven in eri silk, jainkyrshah- muga silk woven draping fabric with red borders, iu spung- the cotton turban and jainkup- eri shawl with beautiful traditional beaded jewellery. Some of the traditional dances are named Laho, Kyndai, Nongrep and Pasteih. Some people carried these humungous paper flower bouquets which symbolize the the season of spring and is also an icon for a healthy and fruitful harvest.
I tried taking some random pictures of the festival and some very pretty young Jaintia girls in their traditional attire.
Happy Chad Sukra!!

Flower Zoom {Happy Sunday}

Unlike in Mumbai, it is Spring here! Abundance of flowers; fresh bright and beautiful. Meghalaya is the place! I've never seen so many flowers together. Here are just a few. Don't ask me the names! I just know lilies and irises.
Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Updates with Pine cones

Hello everyone!
I'm not lost! Absolutely alive and aal izz well!! I'm just in another world! A little cut off from the blogosphere, I'm in the state with plenty of pine cones, tall pine trees and wide expanses of pine forests! I am in Meghalaya- The Abode of Clouds!
As of now I have pictures of pine cones, yet to capture the spread of lovely clouds here, and I love pine cones. The love began when I designed few pine cone motifs for Christmas. Had never seen them earlier and now here there are loads of them. I've collected some to take back to Mumbai and have some fun.
In past few weeks, I have missed a lot of things on the blogosphere.... it was Holi, then the April Fool's day, then Gudi Padwa and many of motif Mondays and wallpaper Wednesdays! *sigh*
But I have more interesting things coming up straight from Meghalaya!! :)
For example: World's best turmeric is grown in Meghalaya!
Will get back with more details and excitement in upcoming posts, till then...
Ciao from Meghalaya!! :)