Monday, May 30, 2011

Motif Monday

Nail Art :: Manicure Effect

missed Mango Mania

Having been disappeared from the tropical region for quite some time, I have majorly missed on the "MaNgO" part of it! Few days left for the arrival of monsoon, I still had a chance to relish the mangoes but some ill health due to the drastic climatic change has abstained me form doing so...
*sigh* *sigh sigh*

Made this pattern as an ode to the missed mangoes of this season...!
Also, I have missed on an important day of my blog, the Hot and Happy "Second Anniversary!" dated 20th May!!
Thanks for all the love...

Friday, May 27, 2011

from Meghalaya to Mumbai

Two months of Meghalaya! Feels like this time was too short and has quickly passed... and the end of two months has brought me back to aamchi Mumbai, I like it as aapli Mumbai!
Things changed for past two months and now are back to being usual!
View from the Cherrapunjee Circuit House
I am back...
from Meghalaya to Mumbai
from high altitude to sea level
from hills to plains
from rivers to the sea
from winter to extreme summer
from pine trees to coconut trees
from room heaters to air conditioners
from woolens to cottons
from clouds in the sky to skyscrapers
from ever turning roads to endless flyovers
from ML 04 to MH 04
from no street lights to the hoarding diwali
from MRDS to MMRDA
from Jowai to Powai
from Tynrong village to Thakur village
from Police bazaar to Crawford market
from Laitmukhra to Linking road
from jadoh to masale bhat
from fresh water fish to salt water fish
from plucked lychee to Rs. 6O for a dozen...
A typical Mumbai picture with the heritage architecture of CST
from research work to development work!
And this reminds me of my pending work. It is high time I get back on the Mumbai track!
But I love being back home and also miss the time there!
Will keep posting about Meghalaya till I have subjects which make interesting posts... and I promise not to bore you by that!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Sha Saw & Jing Bam

No concept of fresh milk here! It is either Amul Tazza or Nestle Everyday milk powder... and that's why it is Sha Saw (red tea)! Sha is "tea" and Saw is "red" in Khasi. One cup of boiling water, perfect amount of tea leaves and optimum sugar makes a cup of steaming hot sha saw to begin your day in a perfect way! Go to local shops, homes or any offices... sha saw is what you will be offered along with some jing bam.

The concept of snacks with the tea is called "jing bam" and it is as exciting as it sounds! The kong (lady) will first offer you sha saw and then in a beautifully handcrafted squarish bamboo basket comes the a variety of jing bam to choose from...It is a confusing situation as you have to choose from a variety of yummy snacks. And you have to be quick! Rice cakes, pan cakes, pattices, puffs, cream rolls, jam buns, sweets of different kinds with samosas, bhajiya and much much more...
Sha Saw lovers (from left) Arunima, Soumya and Dhaneesh @ the Lakadong Tea Stall in Jowai
Lakadong Tea Stall
Sha saw is available all over Meghalaya. But we loved one place- Lakadong Tea stall, is a small tea stall in one of the crowded corner of Jowai market where you will get customized tea...light, strong, more sugar, less sugar or no sugar! Sha saw with cheeni kum was what I always asked for!
Red tea and black gram cooked in onion seed spice.
Rice pancake with sugar topping.
The size of the jing bam basket and the variety of snacks increases as you move from smaller offices to more higher rank and important offices of Meghalya! :P
Unfortunately :( I do not have any picture of the jing bam basket and the "giver of jing bam" in every office; the kong dressed in a typical checkered jain kryshah!

PS: Missing the sha saw and jing bam...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Khublei Shibun

Khublei Shibun means "Thank you very much" in Khasi language. This is the first khasi word I/we (me and Soumya) learnt and is the most pleasing and helpful too.
To admire the overwhelming greet, cooperation and friendship by the lovely people (now friends) of Meghalaya, we made a few Khublei Shibun cards. Here are a few of them...
Khublei Shibun to Ali bhai- the best cook, Shyl Sema- the stylish friend, Sir Hajong- the helpfullest, Bah Pariat- the IIM A man, Peter Marbaniang- the NIDian, Anushka Sharma- the designer, Sujeena Manpoong- the Guwahati friend, Morcha Pde- the SIM friend, Carlo Marbaniang- the architect friend, Mandy- the engineer friend, Ashok Elwin- the well known, Mr. Ladi- the sculptor, Mr. Febby- the NIFT fac, Dorjee- the NIFT fac, Jonathan Rymbai- the busiest man, Ricky- the cool company, Harmless- the non-harmful, Kong Baliyan- the doer of all things, Sir Deepak Chanda- the precise man, Madam Passah- the only madam, Kentiew- the manager, Kong Nian- the enthusiast 1, Hiebhah- the young energy, Dr. Joan- the lady with details, Fomley- the bike rider, Ruati Darnei- the designer, Oriland- the new friend, Mr. Good Year- the good taxiwala, Diana Jathang- the friend, Kong Nampui- the Saipung lady, Mr. Nampui- the Saipung man, Mr. Mangaya- the guide, Jenny- the best friend 1, Chuani- the best friend 2, Sanga Sir- the enthusiast 2, Rema- the cool school teacher, Chungnumga- the secretary, Sumarsing Sawiam- the traditional expert, Teilang Khyriem- the almost busy man, Mang- the perfect entertainer, Bless- the on phone man, Buh- the Sunday awaiting man, William- the best driver, Riew- the never-been-out-of-Meghalaya man, Riaz Bhai- the first and best taxiwala, Sujeet bhai- the exploiting taxiwala, Rashid bhai- the nice taxiwala, Bah Mahesh- the cool dude, Mr. Diengdoh- the Ribhoi expert, A. Khonglam- the in office man, Mr. Bang- the man in office, Pochester Kharkongar- the bureaucrat, Eson- the smart man, Kong Balbara- a typical character, Balawan- the sweet chap, Kong Rikynti- the friendly lady, Ivoreen- the married mystery, Thup- the silent man, Ilis Kramsa- the enthusiast 3, Yar- the Saitsama madam, Bercy- the cousin, T. K. Darnei- the Saipung help, Mayfereen- the NGO lady, Arun Diengdoh- the brother in law, Mr. Yake- the name mystery taxiwala and the countless taxis between Jowai and Ummolong and many more people.

Kublei Shibun to the unlimited pack of Lays- cream and onion, Maggi cuppa mania- chilli chow yo, the bakeries in Jowai, Amul butter and Kissan mixed fruit jam, Britania good day biscuits, Bisleri water and the dal-chawal and alu fry of 5 Stars dhaba for surviving us in Jowai. Khublei shibun to Cafe Shillong, Centre Point, Bread Cafe and Subway for making a difference in Shillong!

Khublei Shibun to all those who have made this trip fantabulous and unforgettable for us!
We love Meghalaya!

Aarti :)

KHUBLEI is the word to wish well, KHU meaning bless and BLEI meaning God, from the depth of the heart and soul. (Ref.: Golden Vine of Ri Hynniewtrep- The Khasi Heritage by Sumar Sing Sawian)

Wallpaper Wednesday

Pineapple fibers... some dried, some fresh and some dyed!
Click on the image to download.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Sunday Special: Sacred Groves of Mawphlang

Sacred Groves! It sounds special, doesn't it?! A large stretch of forest land untouched with any sort of human activity! Pure and virgin nature, that's how special it is. They are the forests preserved for beliefs associated with Khasi religion and traditions.

We (me and Soumya) visited the sacred groves of Mawphlang, one of the largest and best in Meghalaya which is about 25 km from Shillong. To explore the forest, you need a guide to take you around as finding your way back is a bhool bhulaiya! And after a point it is quite scary! Or else you have drop things on the way like Sita dropped her jewels as a direction for Rama or like the Greek hero Thesus who carried a ball of Scottish wool while entering the labyrinth to fight the devil and dropped the thread as a trail to return back safe.
Thank God that these forests are botanically rich and not rich in wild life!! :D

Here are few pictures of the Mawphlang Sacred Grove...
Google mata has more to say on the sacred groves. Few links to that are here and here..