Calling it a year

It has been a mixed bag this year; from the very bad to very good. All years are like that but losing a dear friend earlier this year was a dip that was really low. Even winning Third Place in a National Architectural Design Competition, a rare enough achievement, was tinged with the knowledge that I couldn’t share the news with her, my buddy through those years of design school. We would meet only a few times a year – mostly on birthdays and anniversaries. I am not a phone person so we never had long chats on the phone either. Maybe, it was enough just knowing I could call her if I needed to. Now, I catch myself thinking about her every single day.

UD Studio, 1986

I and my friend, 1986
On the work front, it has been the busiest year for me. The coming year is poised similar. Which is as well (except that it has meant just ten blog posts, if I get this one in, for the whole year!). It means I don’t bother the son, now in his third year of college, with daily phone calls. I usually catch up with him on the weekends though he and his dad chat online more often. Presently, he is home for the holidays and has promised to not game through the nights so that we can see him at lunch and through the rest of the day.

narthagai limes and mango ginger

Narthangai limes and mango ginger for pickling…from a year ago

Continue reading “Calling it a year”

Everyone is invited….

Last year, on the first blogversary of A Mad Tea Party, I got rambling on the matter of food and diet. As I had wished, it did get a life of its own and we did stray into other things…with food as a point of beginning.  There was fun and trickery, food and drink, and periodic indulgences. But you know and I know that this blog would not be A Mad Tea Party without the jabberwocks and their nonsense prose (or verse sometimes!). They get the party going…way off-track on most occasions!  I hope you will all join in the madness and indulge me again this year.

Last year we had a table loaded with poori-bhaji.  And this year by popular choice (and because Bee loves them so…), I have decided the time has come to fry batata-vada.  Batter fried spiced mashed potato balls – that’s batata vada deconstructed for you.  It is not just any street-food.  As vada pav it is so much more! Almost the essence of Bombay – containing within it the struggle for survival in the city of dreams.

The rules are simple: Continue reading “Everyone is invited….”

Dad’s Drink

I am exploring my new camera… and it’s taking frustratingly long to re-learn the ropes. I really wish I could just use my ancient NikonF4 and have the film change into a chip somehow… Someday someone will do something like that I am sure. Till then I have to get used to focusing by half pressing to ‘lock’ the focus… grrr.

On a dear friend’s advice I am trying to carry my camera wherever I go and shoot ‘from the hip’. A couple of days back we were visiting my parents. My dad is very fond of his drink and it is natural for TH to sit down with him for one. Or two. The spread of Sunday papers and magazines seemed to be the perfect backdrop and I suddenly felt inspired. So I took a few shots, reviewed them, moved a few things around (the almond dabba), and also managed to get one in focus (amidst all the impatient folk wishing to get to their drinks)!

Without much further ado, it is going to the Click event: Liquid Comfort! And by the next Click deadline, I should have really figured out my camera! 😉

Dad's Drink

Camera: Panasonic DMC-FZ18
Exposure: 1/4 sec
Aperture: f/2.8