From my kitchen to yours

From my kitchen to yours

Monday, May 28, 2012

MY SPECIAL BIRTHDAY GIFT.....

The "ARTIST" ..Harshvardhan Kadam.

SHAKTI'S DISCOVERY


The concept behind the painting. Self realization of this woman happens in a cosmic ethereal space where the wings represent anticipation of a leap towards freedom. Her posture is submissive. She had surrendered her soul to the realization but she is no slave of anybody. Her being naked represents purity & beauty of her womanhood. Energies within her have found new horizons to explore & explode. I call this painting - Shakti's discovery.
Harshvardhan Kadam.



So my Friend Jaya, wanted to give me something that is really special, and that is me....
And she kept telling me that she has commissioned a painting for me...
Now who on earth gets a "commissioned" painting, only, of course if you are the Queen...
Or if you have a friend like my friend Jaya...(here I'm curtseying)
Who looks at me , but can read me like only , she can ...
And so she kept telling me , its getting done and will reach you soon ...
And stop asking me again ...its special and that takes time...

When I received this , I was speechless...
I knew that Harsh was painting me a birthday gift...
And he was going to paint only after he met me...
Artists ..I tell you...
But this guy is something else...
He is quiet, shy, intelligent and has the warmest smile....
And his work is mesmerizing...
I'm speechless..
All I can say is that "It's an honour"...
And "Thank -you" .....
OH MY GOD.......YEAAAAAAAHHHHHH.....


I'm just extremely and happily surprised , and starry eyed with this interpretation ...
Done specially for me...


I love you guys....
And I wish you all the love and luck ..for the collaboration you are working on ....

P.S. Sharing this with you, because Food and Art like LOVE.....is most fulfilling when shared ...
       Yup ..this is my theory and I'm sticking to it ....


Saturday, May 26, 2012

SOUL SURFER ....

Sometimes, I feel I'm an adult and should by now know all the rules and games of life...
But know none ...
But most often think ..
I know it all...
And with that stupid confidence ..
I walk into life and love with all I am ..
Trusting and smiling ...
And then I fall ..

Then my head smiles at my heart in all smugness and says , "I told you so "
Oh my God haven't I just heard these words before ..

Sometimes I feel Karma plays games with my heart ..
He smiles at me and then hides ..
Leaving me bewildered and red eyed ..

Oh go away and come back no more ..
I'm not made of stone you know...
I am all heart and soul, and live life with a smile...

And every time my heart gets a knock out..
I promise you ..
It does hurt for quite a while...
and more....

My friend Sandy says," being brave and bravado are very different"

Yup being brave is to to look love in his brown eyes and love till it engulfs you ..and if it hurts , then I guess it's better to hurt than feel nothing at all ..
Sweet pain ..

And bravado .. Is that stupid smile pasted to hide what's going on ...
Is that not completely insane ...

I'm still searching ...
For what I do not yet know ..
Guess that's why I'm willing to walk up a mountain ..
And through a valley ..
Swim in the deep blue sea..
And take a chance on me ..

And somewhere while traversing realized ..
You can love whoever you feel like ..without expecting..
Now is that right ... I really don't know ...
What I think , I know, is that...
Love cannot live alone...
Or it may die in time, like fire in the rain..

The essence of us all is love ..
That's our very core.
Who told me this..
Well ... I can't remember anymore...

But this feeling came to me one sun shinning day and has stayed ..
I cannot stop how I feel ..
And I cannot feel less than I do ..

And yet I have realized ..
That this love "Thingy" is the most complicated feeling of what really is such a basic emotion ..
It's all about timing I feel ..
Maybe I should have been born in a different time and space..

But I am encapsulated in a moment that brought so much joy..
Turned me upside-down and inside-out..
And has filled my heart with so much love , that somewhere it's got me a weird sense of calm in the middle of my storm ..

Walk slowly dear heart..
Don't run ...
Stay for a while in the sun...
Look at the trees ...
Smell the flowers ...
Chase butterflies , till you are tired and done ...

And when the day ends..
I'm gonna lay down near the waters end ...
And spend time with the one I love..
In spirit , in soul, in heart and mind ..

Because when I think of you ...
I break into a smile...
Cause I love you, yes I do, forever and a mile...

P.S.Just finished reading,"Palace of illusions, and fell in love with Karna..
     This beautiful intoxicating tale of love and power is a must read..
     And when Draupadi  reaches for Karna's hand in the "Other World"...
     I burst into tears , like torrential rain......
A Love-Story waiting to happen..
    This one line...made the tears flow to a happy place.."dissolving again like fire-flies in a summer evening"
    So this is my ode to , "Draupadi and Karna"...and their love-story waiting to happen...

    And a song I completely love  !

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

BRAVE LITTLE BLUE SQUAW SLIPPERS....



Zene searching for her blue squaw slippers
So this year my blog turned 2 on Mothers Day, and I spent that day with my mum and my kids at my grandma's place, and fleshed out this story , that I made up one day , while driving with Zene, in my car to Bandra , to keep her from getting bored and keeping her slippers on...

Well I hope its a fun read...
My first ever kids story..
So here goes...

Once upon a time...
Well actually I can't say that, because this happened just a few months ago ..and it's absolutely true...
Just like all fairy tales...
This is a story about a pair of Blue slippers that lived in a drawer, along with a whole lot of shoes ,boots , keds , ballerina shoes, crocs and a whole lot more, at the bottom of a cupboard that had little bears on its draws...

But this story is a true story , about a small little pair of slippers , that are a little bigger than your palm, and it goes like this...

One morning the little blue slipper woke up yawning...
" Aaaaaaaaah " it said as it stretched its little blue straps ...
And peeped through the slats of her drawer and opened her eyes to search for her little mistress...
But there was no one in the room, no little feet running around , dancing or doing little cart-wheels...
"So where is my little mistress, and why can't I hear the pitter-patter of her little feet " said the little blue slipper, and went scurrying around in the drawer, running through the grumpy brown boots that were still sleeping,
"And who dared wake me up" boomed his hoarse mud filled voice..."WHO"..

All the shoes in the draw , ran to one corner and huddled together...
It was never really nice, when Brown got angry..because he shook himself with rage and bellowed in a voice that was deafening and when he shakes, he splatters mud on everybody...
But no one could really say anything, because he was the oldest inhabitant of the drawer, the first pair of shoes to come live here and the favorite of the little master of the house..
"WHO DARES WAKE ME UP" he boomed again....

The little blue slippers, inched forward and in a tiny voice said," Sorry! Mr.Brown, but it was me"..
Grumpy Brown  looked down at tiny little blue slipper and boomed,"AND WHO ARE YOU, YOU TINY FUNNY BLUE CREATURE"
"I'm little blue squaw" said the tiny slipper, and I have just flown all the way from a country so far , as a little birthday present from her dad., for the little mistress"
Mr.Grumpy brown looked at him and said, " I don't care where you came from, you woke me up , so you pay the penalty"

The rest of the shoes and sandals, shivered in their soles and whispered amongst themselves, " This is not going to be a pretty sight. "
And just as Mr.Grumpy Brown raised his muddy self....
The little blue slipper squeaked, " Please  Mr. Brown, I was so worried that I could not find my mistress, that I panicked , and...and just wanted to find her and run with her...would you not be upset if you did not find the little Master one day, would you not go searching for him."

Mr.Grumpy Brown's sleepy eyes, suddenly opened wide..
And he looked at the little blue squaw..
And stared at her...and took a step towards her...
The rest of the shoes...squeezed themselves further into the corner...
But the little blue squaw,  stood where she was, though she was really frightened, and just waited for what was to happen ..
Mr. Grumpy Brown, peered down at the tiny blue squaw and said, "Well , when you put it
like that, yes I would go in search of my little master, if I  thought I had lost him, but you see , he goes nowhere without me,he loves me , and I know every little step of his, every little prance, kick and dance move..and that's how it is going to stay , you see his mom chose me, lovely lady with great taste, she took one look at me, and the next thing I knew, I was hugged in her warm arms and she let out a happy squeal , and I was packed in muslin and was driven home"

Every one looked at Mr. Grumpy Brown...
They could not believe , he was actually talking to the little blue squaw, instead of stamping her with his muddy soles...
Maybe ,he was just in the best of moods ,anybody had ever seen him ,in a very long time..
Oblivious to the low murmur of the rest of the footwear and the scuffling of feet..
Mr.Grumpy brown continued , " When I got home , the little master opened my wrapping, and saw me and picked me up and ran around the room shouting," Boot...boot...boot.. think he was just so happy meeting me, and tried me on immediately , but his feet were really small,so his mama,told him to keep me for a bit, well, the little master, just put me on his bed and just laughed and kept putting his tiny feet into me....
I had to wait a few years , but now the little master goes no where without me..." and Mr.Grumpy Brown sat down and wiped his dusty brow...

And looked at the little blue squaw into her  little blue eyes and said, "I like you, you are a brave little one, and owned up to the fact that you woke me up , unlike the rest of the quivering cowardly lot, that live here,so tell me what is it, you need, and I will help you "
And so the little blue squaw told Mr. Brown , how she could not find her little mistress and had to go  in search of her, because she was the protector of her little mistresses feet and had been brought by the little mistresses dad specially for her, flown over many oceans and mountains...

Mr. grumpy Brown, for some special reason, listened to the brave little blue squaw, as she was telling him ,that she was going to find a way to her little mistress, no matter what..
Well first she had to get out of the draw pass the big black dog that guarded the kids room and then make her way , out of their home.

Mr.Brown warned the little blue squaw that there are many dangerous monsters outside this safe draw, that he met whilst roaming around with the little master, they have big round discs, that they spin really fast and move at speeds that no matter what even the Nike's oh the world,  , just cannot keep up ..
And the monsters are always on the paths , big , small , large..Screaming at everyone...

Frankly Mr. Brown was a little in awe of tiny little blue squaw ,who looked like she was definitely going to go out, and  search for her little  mistress..

Mr. Brown...fully awake  now...
Looked at the little blue Squaw, full of beans and not frightened of anything, think he just fell in love with this brave little blue Squaw , and now made it his mission to get her,  out of this drawer and house ....

So he hatched a plan...
And gathered all the shoes , sandals and boots in the draw, and gave instructions like an army general...
Frankly there had not been so much excitement in the shoe drawer since the little Italian sandals last arrived..
She was a feisty little one, constantly flipping her laces and would not hang with the others except with the running shoes with lights from Dallas , think she had a crush on him , and every time , the rest of the gang got together to play and called out to her, she would sit in her little box and play with her spaghetti laces and say, " Non mi intressa"...
Well today was different, and everyone rallied around Mr.Brown...
And so little Ms. Spaghetti , squeezed herself through the slats and went and flipped her laces over the big dog that guarded the room..
He opened one eye, and his his ears stood up and he cocked his head to one side, and was up on his feet, little Mz. Spaghetti , just threw her laces back and ran around the room , and a few other sandals and keds, also joined in this game, Mr. Dallas shoes, also jumped out and chased the big black monster that was chasing little Mz. Spaghetti, whom he was quite in love with, in spite of all her sulks , tantrums and chatter ..
And in this confusion, the little blue Squaw slippers, slipped out of the children's room and hid next to the door, and then , slipped out very quietly as soon as the grocer came in to deliver the groceries for the day...

Down the staircase she sped, puffing and oh soooo tired..
But she ran and ran , and came to a big black road, that was filled with all the spinning monsters that she was warned about, what were they called, oh yes....Spinnacles...
As the little blue Squaw ran ,she passed many different sandals and slippers , on the foot-path and they were all really surprised to see this brand new blue Squaw running all alone...
Some even shouted out , "Where you off all alone little one.."
But she smiled and just kept running ..
And suddenly the scenery changed..
There was no black road anymore...

The ground, seemed soft and was filled with tiny little golden dots...
" What's this now" said the little blue squaw..
"It's sand" said the little crab as he crawled really quickly..
The little blue Squaw ran after the crab, " Wait ...oh please wait..sand...??? where am I, what's sand, actually I'm searching for my little mistress...and who are you?" the little blue squaw babbled and sputtered questions one after the other running ,after the the funny little red creature running sideways at super sonic speed...
Little blue Squaw ran after the creature "Wait please wait"

The little creature stopped, " I'm 'King Brachyura' but you can address me as " your highness" ..
The little blue squaw had never met a king in all her life, and she was tickled blue...
She curtsied as best as she could, and said, " Your Highness..I'm truly happy , I have never met a king before, and I would love to stay and talk to you , but I'm in a hurry as I'm in search of my little mistress, she left home this morning without me, and I'm really worried, she never really does that, and frankly I'm so tired, but I cannot stop till I find her" ...

King Brachyura looked at the out of breath little blue squaw and just raised his tentacle...
"Slow down little one, slow done, things done is a haste are a waste, sit down for  a while and take in the fresh air, and I will help you" ...

The Little Blue Squaw, stopped ...
And looked at into the eyes of King Brachyura, he meant it ,she saw the truth in his eyes...
So she sat down and listened to King Brachyura tell her about this dragon who lived on the misty mountain on the other side of the sea, and how he is the only one who could help her as he was the guardian of the witch with magical powers ,  no one had really seen her, but she was really terrible to look at they had heard ,and she turned all whom she disliked into worms, they had heard of her magic and very very very very afraid...

But she could see all and could see into the future and so was the only one who could help her..
King Brachyura got a few of his helpers to make a little bed of shells for the little Squaw and told her to rest a bit..and set out again when the big bright moon is up smiling in the sky...

The little blue Squaw was so tired that she fell asleep in the shade of a coconut tree on a bed of the prettiest shells , while hermit crabs, stood guard...
While she slept she could see her Little mistresses smiling face, holding her and taking her to play...

She suddenly woke up to see the the handsome Moon smiling at all...
He looked like he had a secret and hence this mysterious smile...
As she stretched her Little Blue straps..
She saw King Brachyura approach her ...
"So are your ready brave little blue Squaw?"he said ,
"Yes your highness, ready as I can be, I'm going to swim through the sea and to the misty mountain and get that dragon to take me to the witch , who is going to lead me to my little mistress ..." she said in the bravest voice possible..
"Well then, let me not stop you anymore, with the handsome moon as your guide , you will find your way"

And so the Little Blue Squaw and King Brachyura , the hermit crabs, shells and all the little soldiers and conch shells , danced away, as they made their way to the welcoming waves that were shinning like the stars..
As they reached the water, the little blue Squaw was wondering how on earth, would she find her way, the sea was vast and never-ending...
She put her strap into the water and warmness washed all over her, the water was warm and welcoming and tasted yummy..
Well it looks like its not going to be as frightening as she thought , and while she was slowly making her way into the sea , it's waves dancing like there was a mad party going on,
Suddenly out of the moonlit sea, came two laughing creatures the little Blue Squaw had never seen..they flipped and swam and all the crabs and shells shouted out in glee..
They bowed down before King Brachyura ...

And the king said, " A small parting gift for you , oh brave little Blue Squaw, they will take you to the misty mountains, the mighty sea is their home and they are the most loved ones in it, my friends, Tara and Karna Dolphin"
Tara and Karna bowed to King Brachyura and said, " Any friend of yours is a friend of ours, hop on brave little blue Squaw and we will take you to the shores of the misty mountains"
The little Blue Squaw was so happy ,she could not believe that the king was so generous with her and he hardly knows her, and here were the dolphins willing to take her to the shores of the misty mountains , and the shells made a bed for her and everyone was so nice...
She thanked everyone and hugged the shells and bowed down to King Brachyura , " How can I ever repay you ", she said..
" Well" said the wise King,"You don't have to ,just pay it  forward,if you meet anyone in your life ,and you can help them, do it, without expecting anything in return and your heart will feel happier that you could ever feel" ..
And so keeping the wise Kings words in her heart,she hopped on to the little carriage that Tara and Karna Dolphin had kept ready for her...
And waved good-bye to her friends on the shiny sands and sailed away in the moon lite over silvery waters...

They could soon see the misty mountain range..
And frankly it was the most beautiful sight little Blue Squaw had ever seen , the mountains were filled with huge trees , that swayed in the cool breeze and the trees were filled with flowers she had never ever seen , and the peaks of the mountains had puffy clouds sitting on them and over the clouds the rays of the mischievous Sun was shinning down...
The little blue Squaw's eyed open wide and she smiled her biggest brightest smile and clapped her straps in glee...
There was nothing dangerous or frightening about the misty mountains at all..
Tara and Karna Dolphin, dropped little blue Squaw on to it's rocky sandy shore and told her to be careful and after many good-bye's , they flipped and swam away, leaving the Little Blue Squaw alone to search for the dragon who guards the witch of the misty mountain, who is going to help her find her little mistress...

And so the little Blue Squaw, turned towards the mountain , it was really really enormous, and she could hear funny sounds coming from the trees...
And with all the courage the little blue Squaw could muster,she took tiny little steps towards the path that would lead her to the top of the mountain..
And as she was making her way very very slowly..
She heard a laughing voice say, "Pass-word please"

She stopped stunned out of her wits, where was this voice coming from, maybe the trees are talking, they must be magical trees and probably if she just knew the password , there would be a magical road that would take her straight to the witch and she would not have to meet the dangerous dragon..
"I don't know the password, oh mighty tree" she said in her bravest voice...
"0h mighty tree, did this funny creature , just say,mighty tree "
"bwaaaaaha ha ha ha ha ".
 And before the little squaw knew what was happening, hundreds of little creatures with tails descended on the sand, laughing and rolling , and back slapping one another, they smiled a lot and talked a lot and jumped and swung from branch to branch....
"Taz Macaque, that's the name, you funny blue tailless creature of the sea, how dare you try and walk through my jungle, without seeking my permission...bwaaaaaha ha ha ha ha ha .."
The little blue squaw did not quite under stand this creature that was hanging upside down , on a rope that seemed to be  attached to his  hairy body, and could not figure if he was laughing or was serious...
"I'm sorry Mr. Taz Macaque , but I do not know any password , nobody told me that I would need one, and if it's OK with you , I just want to walk through , as I have to meet the dragon that guards the witch of the misty mountain..."
"Meet the Dragon that guards the witch of the misty mountain , says the funny blue tailless creature bwaaaaaha ha ha ha ha ha ha " said Taz Macaque, as he leaped into the trees and did a somersault and landed on his two feet in style on the ground with one arm on his hips and in one hand there was a fruit that he had already taken a bite of...
The little blue squaw had never seen anybody do this or laugh as much as Taz Macaque did...
And so the little blue squaw just stood and smiled and said, "Mr. Taz Macaque, I really do not know the password, but I really have to go up and meet the dragon that guards the witch of the misty mountain, because I need to find my little mistress and she is the only one who can help me"

"Mr....I like the sound of that to my name ,and he turned to the rest of the laughing creatures and said , from today onwards, you will all have to address me as Mr.Taz Macaque...bwaaaah ha ha ha ha ha ha ...
And then he turned to the little blue Squaw and said,"Oh you really are a funny creature ,you tailless blue thing....and mighty stupid I must add, even though it's not really good-manners to call anyone that, but in order to express the frivolity and gravity of this situation, I am forced to ...
So like I was saying Mighty STUPID...bwaaah ha ha ha ...to try and go up the mountain...no one has ever tried to go up there , and if you do, you will never come back...."
"But I must. I have to ,I need to find my little Mistress"said the little blue squaw and suddenly , right there in the middle of the laughing creatures , just started to cry...

Big drops of tears just rolled down her cheeks and little sniffles could be heard, by all of them , and suddenly, everyone stopped laughing and just looked at one another...
"She is leaking "said one of them ..
"Yes she is"said another "and making squeaking sounds"
None of these creatures had ever seen anything like this and they all surrounded the little blue Squaw...

"I'm crying, I think that's what happens , when you feel very very sad deep down in your heart, I have never felt like this before, but right now I feel like my heart is breaking"
Taz Macaque walked towards the little Blue squaw and looked at her and said, " You cannot be sad with Taz around , I laugh and make everyone laugh and live life having fun and swinging through the trees, and no one here has ever been sad with me around, life is too short to be sad, so wipe your tears little one and let Taz Macaque help you, like only he can"

The little blue Squaw peered into Taz's  eyes, they were as black as the night, but he did mean every word he said.
She learnt very young, that if someone cannot look you in the eye's and talk to you, they may not really be telling you the truth, so she always looked into everyone's eyes when she talked to them and liked it when they did the same..
The little blue squaw wiped hear tears and told Taz Macaque and his friends , the whole story..
And they all listened in rapt attention..
"And so I have to go up the mountain and meet the dragon who guards the witch of the misty mountain."
They were all really silent, they had often seen the big black dragon walk through the forest and always stayed out of his way, he was huge, and had spiky black horns all over his back and down to the tip of his tail and was perennially in a bad mood, roaring and smoke coming out of his mouth...and he stomped as he walked...back up ...high up at the peak where he lived ...

Taz Macaque put his hairy arm into the tiny little blue straps of the little blue squaw..and signaled to the rest, "Follow me"..
And the rest of the tailed creatures, followed Taz and the little blue squaw , into the jungle and up the path to where the dangerous dragon lived..
And Taz started singing his favorite songs and the rest followed suit...
And the entire troop, ran and swung from branch to branch and sang , and if they were frightened , well they never really showed any fear, and kept singing and swinging on, without showing any signs of tiredness...
And while the sun started setting behind the misty mountains, the trees got even more dense and the trail got very tough..
And when they reached a path that was covered with the darkest stones you could ever see, and a vine with big green leaves and flowers that were white, with petals that looked like a spiders web...
Taz Macaque looked at the little blue Squaw and said, " This is as far as I'm brave enough to go with you , little one"
And I will meet you on your way back , down the mountain, and I hope you find what you looking for"
And he turned around and winked at her in that very Taz Macaque way, and jumped up into the trees and began singing and the rest of the troopers did the same, and after a while, she could not hear any more twigs breaking or laughing or the crazy singing...

Little Blue Squaw was standing all alone, the sun was no longer shinning in the sky , and she could not yet see the handsome moon smiling in the sky...
She stood before the huge gate, that were made with spears but no latch...
Should she just push open the door and walk in, or should she just knock ...
What's going to happen is going to happen, the dragon may just get completely enraged  or then he may just help her...
She stood waiting outside the gate, wondering what to do...
This is what she travelled so far for, all she had to really do is knock on the door or then just push it open and walk...
" Gosh Little squaw " she said to herself, " you are not someone who ever gives up easily, and this little gate is not stopping you now, push and walk through"...
And so with all the strength she could muster, she pushed open the mighty gates and slowly very very slowly walked through....
The gate closed behind her and the white flowers started laughing....
When she turned around, she walked straight into what looked like a big black wall, she tried walking around it, but it seemed to be moving with her.
She stopped  and looked up and .....

OH MY GOD.....
She just froze, she was looking into the big brown eyes of the blackest dragon she had ever seen and the largest and, he had smoke coming out of his nostrils and was peering down at her....
Nothing...nothing...came out of her mouth , not a squeak.. NOTHING...
"HOW DARE YOU WALK INTO MY HOME" bellowed the dragon..
The little blue Squaw ,could not move and just shivered like a leaf, and was not even able to say "Sorry" ..That she thought she so needed to say right now ....
Rooted to the spot...
"Think , think" she said to herself, "Say something smart or funny, that's what normally works" and then run for your life....
"Is this how you treat your friends" she squeaked..
The dragon was stunned, nobody had ever spoken to him before..
"What did you say" he bellowed...
All the trees on the mountain shivered with the roar..
The little squaw mustered some more courage and said a little louder, " Is this how you treat your friends.".....
The dragon , roared and stomped his feet and more smoke came out of his nostrils...
"Do you just walk into people's homes uninvited"He bellowed..
" There was no latch" she screamed back...
"You could have knocked" said the dragon , a little softer..
"I could have but I did not, because I was too frightened to think",said the little squaw
"So I frighten you...." said the dragon peering at the little blue squaw
"Actually not that much, anymore"said the little blue squaw.
"Not  that much, or not at all" said the dragon...
"Be really brave now" said the little squaw to her heart ,
 "NOT AT ALL" she screamed.." And you better learn some manners,this is really not a civil way to talk to anyone"said the little blue Squaw a little louder..
"You walk into my home ,uninvited.....and you are teaching me manners" said the exasperated dragon...
"Are we fighting with one another,because we hardly know one another,and I only fight ,with the ones I really like "

The big black dragon stood up to his full size and let out a huge roar, and ran around, as the mountain shook , the little blue squaw just stood where she was, petrified out of her wits, and watch the dragon, run about and stomp and jump and then all of a sudden, he collapsed on the floor ....
LAUGHING ....
It was the oddest sound she had ever heard , like thunder with bolts of lightening echoing, it was not frightening...but it was mighty loud...
And suddenly she felt herself being lifted up , by a great huge paw, and then she was hooked high on the dragons horns on his head and he went galloping , to the other side of the mountain and was pounding up another mountain...
She was frightened but, could do nothing and so just held on to the dragons shiny horns for dear life...
"Where is he taking me...
Am I going to ever see my little mistress again...
Oh my God..."

And suddenly she saw a sign at the bottom of another mountain , that had a broom stick..
The black dragon was taking her to the wicked witch...
This is what she wanted , this is what she came so far for, but think this was the scariest moment of her life..
The little blue squaw, started screaming," Help...Help"
But the dragon just continued running , higher and higher up the tallest mountain in the range...
"The witch is going to keep me in a little cage, or cast a spell on me and make me a rock , or then put me in her hot cauldron, where's she will melt me and feed me to the ugly dangerous animals she keeps, or worst still turn me into a worm" little blue Squaws thoughts were running amuck...

She tried to jump off the dragons horns, but just could not,and struggled to disentangle herself and was absolutely a helpless prisoner of this dangerous black dragon, who was owned by the wicked witch of the misty mountains..
She looked up and saw the handsome moon smiling in the sky, "There's really nothing to smile about'' she thought to herself ..
"This is my last night on this magnificent land ,and I'm never going to see my  little mistress again"...
She continued bobbing on the horns of the dragon , for what seemed like an eternity...
And then finally after they passed the  puffy clouds..
They reached what should have been, the wicked witches home..

It was like nothing she imagined..
But the little blue squaw, did not have much of a chance to have a look as the dragon was galloping at a tremendous speed , till he reached the edge of the mountain and screeched to a  halt..
"Mimi " roared the Dragon...
The witch turned around..
 And the little squaw was face to face with the most dangerous witch the earth had ever known..

The little blue squaw was quiet, very quiet..
As she looked at the witch...
She was tiny, had brown eyes, shoulder length hair, with daisies in it, and had a smile ,that was so naughty and sweet at the same time, and was wearing what seemed like layers of fine spun threads of silk as her dress, that shone silver in the moon light.
"Is this the dangerous wicked witch" thought the little squaw..
"Witch I am" said Mimi, "Wicked I'm not , dangerous I may be if anyone tries to harm the ones I love"..
The little squaw, put her hand  to her mouth, did she just say this aloud..

Then Mimi the witch ,turned to the big dangerous black dragon and said with the most knowing smile" "So what brings you here Zizou in such a big hurry , tearing across the misty range "

"The little blue thing  is not scared of me,not at all ,she said so ,ask her "
And again the big black dragon, went completely insane, roaring and jumping and thumping on the mountain...
"I can now have my fire"..
"Well wait a bit you are frightening the little blue creature"

And Zizou the big dangerous dragon of the misty mountains and the guardian of the......errr witch, sat down and curled up next to her feet..

Mimi looked at the little blue thing and said, " So what would you like the wicked witch of the misty mountains to do for you, little blue Squaw"
And as the little blue Squaw opened her mouth to speak..

Mimi the witch said, " Or you can tell me over hot chocolate and warm muffins that are baking in the oven, I'm sure you had a long journey and need to eat a bit and rest a night"
Zizou the dragon and the little blue Squaw, just followed Mimi into her thatched roof hut..
And we're greeted with the most beautiful aroma of muffins and scones and marmalade and hot chocolate...
And Mimi the witch fed the dragon and the little blue Squaw, and then took them to her favorite patch of flowers  on the mountain side...

And then said, " Yes Zizou , you are now going to have your fire back , because the little blue Squaw is not frightened of you, and actually likes you, and you are going to continue being the mighty dragon you are, and your curse is lifted forever, you will be able to make friends and will be loved by all the creatures on the mountain, specially that laughing Taz Macaque that I know you hide and watch ,while he and his friends have a blast, ..
You have served your punishment well and without any complains, but I hope you know that if you use your powers to frighten creatures smaller and weaker than you ,or ever try and bully anyone again,you will be punished and not only will your fire be taken away , but you will be sent to the big black hole of 'No return'...

Zizou looked at Mimi, eyes brimming with tears and head hung in shame, "Never again,never again " he said, " I was young and really stupid, but I know now the value of being loved and having friends to share everything with" and I treasure that most of all, but what I love most is being your guardian, even though I have always known fully well ,that you never needed me to look after you, because you have the man in the moon, who looks after you"

Mimi smiled that naughty smile again..
And then turned to the little blue Squaw and said, "When you love someone , you possess a great power inside you ,that no one an take away, a love that makes you brave enough to face anything and everything"
"You are a brave ,very brave, little blue Squaw "... Rest ...you will get what your heart wants most ...

And  there on the misty mountains under the smiling face of the handsome moon...
Zizou the dragon and the little blue Squaw lay down to sleep...

As their eyes were closing, they saw Mimi walk to the edge of the mountain, and sit with her pretty feet hanging down the mighty mountain side..
She looked up at the handsome moon and smiled at him , love beaming out of her heart and as she blew kisses to him , they turned into stars in the sky...
And whispered"Siempre" to him, in the softest voice possible...
And she sat there , strummed her ukelele and sang to him the most beautiful songs that anyone ever heard...

Zizou the  dragon looked at the brave little blue Squaw and said, " Love makes you do magical wonderful brave things,if you did not love your little mistress, you would never come in search of me and I would never get my fire back,when you meet your little mistress, hug her tight for me, and thank you little Squaw ,thank you for not being afraid of me and liking me who who I am."
The little blue squaw looked up at the big fire -breathing dragon and said, "You just had the kindest eyes, and so I was hoping against everything that I heard about you, and went with the niceness in your eyes"

As the dragon snored loudly near the little blue squaw, on a bed of the prettiest daisies, the little blue Squaw looked at him and at Mimi the witch, sitting and blowing kisses to the moon, and decided that day,that for the rest of her life ,she would only go with what she felt about someone with her heart and not listen to opinions of anyone about anyone..
And she drifted into a deep slumber,and was dreaming that her little mistress was searching for her , everywhere,in gardens,at the beach, at home,under the bed and ...

Suddenly she opened her eyes and was sitting on a soft bed , that smelt of strawberries....
"I'm home ...I'm home" she jumped and flipped ...and she suddenly saw her little mistress look at her and squeal in delight and run to her mama's room in great excitement...
"Mama ,mama,I found my little blue slippers, do you know a big dragon called Zizou came into my room and gave me my blue slippers , and he said they were magical , and gave me a tight hug and then he said to me "I'm going to leave something that will always remind you of me ,  if you ever get lost or are afraid , all you have to do, is close your eyes and think of you're dragon brother in the forest and you will be safe... And look at my slippers mama, they were plain blue , but now they have the dragons horns all over them and his black patches, I wish you met him mama, he was the sweetest dragon ever...

And the little mistresses mum, took me in her hands and said, "Yes they are magical baby, and winked at me."
She  reminded me of the witch on the mountain, except she did not have daisies in her hair and was wearing jeans..

And my little mistress then went running to her brother's bed and jumped on him and said, "Zeke,  look I found my slippers and a dragon called Zizou brought them to me , I wish you met him...
And he looked at me and said, " Next time I'm going to hide you in a better place ,this was just too easy"

The little mistress was just too happy to be listening, and was running all around in delight.
Later in the afternoon, before her nap,she looked at me and placed me safely back  in the shoe drawer...
Where I was greeted by all the inhabitants with tight hugs and was given a special place...
I smiled at everyone and asked for Mr. Brown..
The little dragon blue Squaw slippers...
Who walked forward in a swagger and smiled a deep dimpled smile...
Well I could hardly recognize him, he was no longer caked in mud at all, in fact he was really handsome in a rugged sort of way, very much like the cowboys you see in western movies...

Well I was given center stage, and told all of my friends, about my adventure  and  King Brachyura the crab king who walked side-ways, the shells, Tara and Karna the dolphins, Mr. Taz Macaque who laughed a lot, but had a brave and a kind heart, and about Zizou the dangerous dragon who guarded Mimi the witch of the misty mountains...
And everyone asked me soo many questions...that by evening , I was too tired to speak...
but had the biggest smile on my face, because like the witch Mimi said, "Courage comes from love", 
and I was just happy that I found the courage to find my little mistress, because of all the love I carried in my heart...

And yes on full moon nights , I still steal up to the terrace and look at the multitude of stars in the sky ..
And know that Mimi the witch is sitting at the edge of the mountain with daisies in her hair, singing a beautiful song and blowing kisses to the love of her life, " the man on the moon" ...










Saturday, May 5, 2012

AS PRETTY AS A WOMAN IN LOVE....


And so this afternoon, I finally finished my "Sugar-paste and Fondant" workshop ..
Have immersed myself in the art of making sugar flowers, because have an insatiable desire to learn new things and also because I love flowers..
Especially daisies ...
They make me happy ..Very happy..
Flowers always, and I mean always, put a smile on my face...

So for the past three weeks..
With a few holidays in between ..
I have made flowers and more flowers..
Roses, Carnations, Asters, Poinsettias, Azaleas, Lotus, Daisies,Lilies Blossoms etc..etc..

 How the petal should look ..
How it should curl or twirl...
I have done ruffles and crimps and borders....

Learned how to make a wedding cake..
NO NO have absolutely no intention of getting married..
This is for the other suckers...ha ha ha ..

Learned how to make caramel..
How to air-brush flowers...
Pipe dots that look like lace, make pretty pieces of lace out of royal icing, make butterflies , that I'm crazy about and basically everything that makes the outside of a cake ...
As pretty as a "Woman in Love"..

Yup..Because a woman in love, looks beautiful because of what she holds inside her...
That her smile speaks in a language you may never understand...
Her eyes light up with embers nobody can extinguish..

And I feel, in the same way, if you can translate , into a form how yummy the inside of a cake is, then well, you have learned some "MAGIC" in life...

Fabian , my teacher is absolutely fantastic...and Magical...
He is patient and always has words of encouragement..
And in these  past 3 weeks , I have not only learned , how to decorate cakes and make them beautiful inside out, but also learnt a little more patience...
Because when you learn Sugar-craft...
you need patience...LOTS OF IT ...

So you see, in my (fantastic or crazy...take your pick) opinion, the out side of a cake is very much like a woman is love...
Very very beautiful, intricate, fragile and brimming with an unparalleled glow..
But if you do not handle her with a lot of love, care and loving attention....
She will crack under harshness or neglect, just like the beautiful sugar-paste flowers or an over exposed Fondant, (which keeps the beautiful essence of the cake protected like a loving arm wrapped protectively around the one you love...)
And all the richness and flavour and essence of love that she holds inside her , will lose some its fragrance and wholesomeness due to exposure to the harsh elements ...

So in my conclusion...
Please do go and learn at least one thing in life , that challenges you and makes you happy..
To me , I'm blessed that I get a chance to explore various roads in my life...
Fall in love..
Drink wine...
Smile...
Believe in magic, only then can it stay alive..
Let water flown under the bridge ...GO...
Laugh, even if no one is cracking any jokes...
And love your self...
And thank the one above , before you go to sleep , for everything...Regardless...

And treat everyone with as much love and care as possible...
You never know , if you ever gonna meet them , ever again...

So yes, I love all that I learnt from Fabian...
And yes I love spending time with flowers...
Now I need to get down to practising , all I learnt...
And put it all to good use..

Till then...
I will stay , happy and smiling...
And will walk a mile..
And will talk , as much as I do...
And make you laugh , like only I can...
And sing my favorite songs...
And chase butterflies..
And put daisies in my hair, smile and squint at the sun..
And sit by a lake so blue...
And wave out to the puffy clouds passing by..

OK I'm stopping ...now..
Or Mini, Jaya and Sandy, will again shake their beautiful heads and and toss their tresses and roll their kohl lined eyes and say, "The girl has lost it"...
Well frankly, "I have"...

P.S. Call Fabian (9820521374), if you want to learn , all this really amazing stuff..

 
 


Friday, May 4, 2012

Day 71 - ZENE ZOE'S 5TH BIRTHDAY...

And as usual , this year too, Zene cut more  cakes than my little Zeke ever does..
She cut 4 cakes again..
One in school..
One for her birthday party, that we had for her for the first time, (as in May there is really no one to have a party with..)
The cake I made for her , which had pink bows and blue flowers..
A small group of monkeys that I love
A layer of marzipan, butter-cream icing and chocolate ganache..
It had to be filled with flowers..

The birthday girl, through the loops..
Had to put daisies..happy flowers..
And the fresh mango cake that we always have for her birthday at Waterstones, that is simply , out of this world...

And so this year, was wondering what to make for her birthday and as she is not completely into chocolate , I decided to bake a simple sponge that was not too chocolaty..
I tried this for the first time...



INGREDIENTS..
115 gm-Chocolate
1/2 cup-double cream ( I used the Amul tetra-pack)
1/2 cup- Milk
1 tbsp- Vanilla essence
115 gm- Butter
175 gm- Castor sugar
3- Eggs
225gm - Flour
1tsp- Baking powder

METHOD

Pre-heat the oven to 150 degrees, and grease and line two 8 inch round tins with silicon or parchment paper..
In a small bowl, sift the flour, the baking powder,and keep aside... 

Melt the chocolate with the cream on a double boiler,over a low flame , stirring until smooth..
Then take it off the flame and stir in the milk and vanilla essence, and set aside to cool...

In a large bowl beat the butter and sugar for about 3 to 5 minutes, until light and fluffy...
Add the eggs , one at a time , beating after every addition...

Alternatively add the flour and the chocolate mixture to the egg and sugar mix..Until just blended..

Divide the mix into the two tins, and bake for 30 minutes or till the cake springs back if you press it in the center.. or if you insert a tooth pick in the center, it comes out clean...
Cool the cakes in the tins for 10 minutes and then, take them out and leave to cool on a wire rack..

It is always better if you can cool both the cakes and then keep it in the fridge over night...
It is easier to slice them..

Slice both the cakes in the center..
Stack them over one another, filling each layer with a filling of your choice..
I use Almond marzipan in one layer...
The second layer had butter cream icing..
And the third layer had chocolate ganache..



And once this was done ..
I was then wondering what to do as part of the decoration..
Well I knew it had to be as pretty and dainty as my little monkey "Zene"...
And so this is the first cake I decorated in the middle of doing my Sugar-craft and fondant course..
And it was great fun...
Zeke kept her away from the kitchen, while I made flowers and mixed colours and formed ribbons , and piped leaves...
Zene would keep coming to the kitchen on the pretext of water or just generally...
And Zeke would keep chasing her away..
Or then we would make her shut her eyes and drink her water that she kept coming for...
After some time...
I decided that I need to have a glass of wine..
So I poured myself some really nice Pinot Noir..
And left it near me.....
Till I finished the cake..
Once it was done, I looked at it, and frankly could not really believe that I could create something so beautiful...
I was very happy with what I created, really happy...
The cake looked happy and pretty and so beautiful , like my Zene...

On Zene's birthday, that is 2nd May, we all went to our favorite , Dakshinayan, with Zene's friends and my friends and , grandma and grand pa..
Stuffed our selves with "Gun-powder idli's , rasam-rice, Bissebille bhat, Dosas, vadas and when we were all too full to move...

We got Zene's birthday cake out, cut it and ate it...
It was soft and had a nice mix of different flavours...
The marzipan , butter-cream and chocolate, along with the lightly flavoured chocolate sponge, was a very delicate taste...
It was very much like my Zene actually...very lovely on the outside and completely surprising and full of flavour on the inside...
Well what can I say, she does take after her "Mama"....ha ha ha 

We then proceeded to our little piece of paradise...
Where we swam and chatted and had a mad time..
Arshad took pictures of the kids under water, and they went crazy, making funny faces...
Sambo and Jaya chatted about "Life" and its funny happenings...
And I slept under the shade of a coconut tree...happy and satiated and drunk on life...
(but missed Mini, Vivaan, Sairah, Sandy, Kichie, Shaheen, Arsalan and Ayatal...It did not feel quite the same without everyone...)

But Zene's birthday is always full of magic...
Just like her..
Everything turns out very special, where she is concerned...
Even the way she was born..was like straight out of a film scene...
Unreal..
Will share that a little later..

As for Zene, she is just a little munchiken , who is into princess stuff and considers herself one too...Have no clue, where she got that from..
She says whats on her mind..
Throws tantrums...
And when she cries , she breaks your heart...
And when she hugs, they are the tightest hugs ever...
She is a feisty, naughty little bundle of contradictions...
She is learning to swim, and would not take out her swimming goggles, even when they were completely fogged up..ha ha ha
It was really funny, she kept walking around with them...
And Jaya, Sambo and me would keep asking her to take it off..
But sorry , its now a much needed fashion accessory, and was not coming off, however fogged up they were...
She is more than, all I could ever ask for..
And gave me the tightest kiss, because she had such a great time...
We cut one more cake, the fresh cream , with fresh mangoes...
Oh my God...Now I really want the recipe of the sponge, the cream mix and everything...
It was to die for...

My little Zene, She is 5 today, and to me she will always be my little angel..
Cannot believe this, but I wanted another boy after Zeke...
Well I thank God for not listening to me, I ask for really silly stuff sometimes...
Thank God, he filters all my requests...

And I got this little bundle of squashable love...
She says the right things and wraps us all around her little finger...
And she has a smile , that can sell sand to the Sheik's in Dubai ha ha ha ...
She is all and everything...
And all I want for her, is that she is kept safe , in mind, body ,heart and soul...
And pray that her smile is always filled with happiness ..
And she never loses that naught spark in her beautiful brown eyes..

I LOVE YOU MY ZENE ZOE POOIEE....