January dawned fresh as a gift this year – a present waiting to be unwrapped.
I love receiving presents. Especially when they come nicely packed in silver boxes with a big bow!
What is behind the big bow?
Luckily, January didn’t disappoint. It had some pleasant surprises in store for me.
Food and friends in January
For me, friendship is synonymous with meeting and eating. There’s nothing quite as rewarding as meeting friends and chit chatting over a good meal. This month I managed to do this four times.
The first was dinner at home for 20 of us. This was in honour of a school friend who was visiting from Overseas. Since she is here for a bit, I was happy to have her and some of our friends over.
The second was a lunch for 12 for the family. I was a bit apprehensive about both as not only was I entertaining after a year, but I was also using my new, untrained, raw Staff. Luckily both went off well and if the flowing conversations were any indicator, they were a great success.
The third was the celebration of a friend’s wedding anniversary where I had the chance to feast on some amazing Mughlai cuisine.
The fourth dining experience was the Bohri Thaal . This unique experience was hosted by my friend F who is visiting from Zurich. And didn’t we get to enjoy the best of the best! Laal Raan or roast leg of mutton in a creamy tomato based gravy, chicken drumsticks fried to perfection, and the ever so fragrant chicken biryani. In true Bohri style, the savoury was followed by a sweet and we got to eat a scrumptious pineapple halwa and hand churned Sitaphal ice cream. Words don’t do justice to this meal and one can only appreciate it after eating it.
What made January really special was the fresh green mustard leaves, strawberries, and red Delhi carrots.
Books in January
The year began with the gift of two books. Both were heavy times of pure NON-Fiction. Sunder Advani’s story ‘Even Against all Odds’ as a hotelier was fascinating. I never imagined he led such a life. Heavy was Sunita Nair’s coffee table book on ‘Indigenous Artists’ was quite heavy too. But it is well researched and beautifully illustrated so definitely worth the weight.
In retrospect, January turned out to be non-fiction month, as the third book turned out to be the story of Vilayat Khan, the legendary sitar player. This book written by Namita Devidayal is a very easy and pleasant read which will appeal to non music lovers too!
Movies in January
Despite working around the hectic schedules of everyone at home, I managed to fit in two movies. ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’ is worth seeing because it truly reveals the behind the scenes intrigues in Indian politics. I saw this with my movie friend Jo.
The other movie I wanted to watch this month was URI. And wonder of wonders, Hubby Dear accompanied me to see it! This was another enjoyable movie, well made with just the right amount of thrill factor and brilliant acting from all the cast.
Events in January
So it would seem that January had many opportunities for me beyond the household kitchen sink. Daughter No 1 persuaded me to attend a discussion Sense & Sensibility: Culture & the Conduct of Life. This event held on the lawns of the CSMVS by the Asia Society was a once in a lifetime experience. I was indeed lucky to hear the world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo MA speak and perform ( albeit briefly) with the well known Carnatic Vocalist TM Krishna. Add to this, the ideas of Nandita Das and Homi Bhabha and you definitely have the recipe for a magical. chilly winter evening.
Health in January
On the health front, all wasn’t too well. Both Wow Dinga and his brother became skin and bone in week 3 with a terrible stomach flu. It was pitiful to see my two little devils lie listlessly on the bed and I couldn’t have been happier when the pillows and cushions were strewn all over the floor once more.
As for me, the last two days of January saw me sneezing with a 24-hour flu.
Another hiccup in my life this month was the MAJOR issue with my iPhone, Vodafone and Airtel. For two weeks I was running between Apple and Vodafone till finally, I switched to Airtel. That too was not as smooth as it normally is but luckily that’s all behind me now.
So all in all, January has been a bountiful month.
Thank you, January.
What was your January like?
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p.s. Images for the movies and books have been taken from the net.