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8 Mar

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Kabab Station

26 Nov

It’s officially my last day in Bangalore. Crazy! For lunch today Gopi took us to Kabab Station with his entire family. We started out with chicken, paneer and fruit kabobs. I thought that was the main course but was surprised to find out that that was just the appetizer. It was followed by a buffet…

and some pani puri…

and a dessert of ladduh, kir and fruit tart.

Good thing my stomach was already stretched out from Thanksgiving, or else I wouldn’t have been able to fit in all this delicious food. YUM!

Thanksgiving in India

25 Nov

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year. Binge eating. Binge Drinking. Turkey. Creamy, fluffy mashed potatoes. Gravy. Pumpkin pie. What’s not to love? Also it always falls on or around my birthday making it extra fun. Since I’m in India for Thanksgiving this year, without an oven, Claire and I found an Italian restaurant that would cater a T-day dinner for the two of us. A whole turkey, vegetables, gravy, mashed potatoes, stuffing and pumpkin pie… for 10 people. That was the minimum order, unfortunately (or fortunately, maybe?). Leftovers are one of the best things about Thanksgiving.

We give Thanksgiving from Toscano the thumbs up!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!

Going to Goa

22 Nov

Taking full advantage of being in India (for work), Claire and I squeezed in a weekend trip to Goa (for fun). I never get sick of beautiful beaches or perfect sunsets or straight-up indulgent relaxation. We booked a hotel on Canacona Beach, which is a good distance south of the main city and the more touristy beaches. No drugged induced hippy trance rave parties for us. :) We had a minor hiccup with Kingfisher canceling our flights for the trip but got it all sorted out by taking a flight through Mumbai. On the upside, we found these gems at the Mumbai Airport.

No vegan doughnut from Babycakes, but it’ll tide me over.

We arrived around 4 pm on Saturday and in order to maximize our beach time, we quickly headed out to the beach which was conveniently steps from the hotel. We had just enough time to get our daily dose of vitamin D and catch the gorgeous sunset.

Even the stray dogs on the beach were super chilled out. Cuteness!

The restaurants at the hotel weren’t much to write home about, but the fruit stands on the beach were awesome. Claire got a whole pineapple sliced up and I got a GIANT coconut and mini bananas. Perfect snacks to have in our cabanas.

It’s hard to believe that the countdown of my India trip has begun. I only officially have four more days of work before I fly up to Delhi to meet Jamie and Shauna, for our tour of the Golden Triangle (Delhi, Agra and Jaipur). I’m so excited to be reunited with my lovely ladies. Oh my how time flies.

Crashing an Indian Wedding

17 Nov

Ever since I watched Monsoon Wedding, I’ve wanted to go to an Indian wedding. I find all the traditions, rituals and elaborate decorations so fascinating! Plus I really wanted to dress up in a traditional Indian sari. It was just our luck that Gopi’s sister is a wedding planner and was throwing a wedding at the Bangalore Palace tonight. Here we are walking up to the entrance flanked by the wedding party’s flower strewn cars.


Indian weddings are huge. I think this one had over 1,000 guests. I don’t even know that many people.

Lovely fruit and vegetable sculptures. I love the crocodile constructed out of bitter melon and the penguin made out of eggplant. Genius!


Food and sweets were abundant.


I had a bit of sari envy. Even though I loved the navy blue sequined one that Gopi’s friend let me borrow, some of the ladies there had the most gorgeous silk saris, topped off with the most stunning gold jewelry.

Unfortunately, we had to leave early to take a conference call from the U.S., but before we left, they gave us a coconut for good luck.

Only in India (maybe)?

16 Nov

A little snippet from dinner last night at Shiro in UB City.

Waiter brings over a glass of Coke with ice for Claire.

Claire: Oh, can I have a glass without ice, please? (We don’t drink the tap and we avoid ice too)

Waiter: grunt

The waiter walks about 10 feet away, clearly still in plain sight, and takes the ice out with either his fingers or a fork. He returns with the same drink with the liquid level down about an inch and one piece of ice still in it. We are baffled.

Claire: There’s still ice in it.

Waiter: smirks

Claire: Never mind. I’ll just drink water.

The awkward situations never end.

Things I Miss About L.A.

13 Nov

Being homesick is the strangest feeling. Strange in the way it stirs up appreciation and gratitude. A little perspective gives you so much to contrast and compare. Here’s my short list of things I’m missing about L.A.

- Biking everywhere. I even miss the treacherous bike ride down Abbot Kinney and Main St. You never know when you’ll get doored. Here’s a picture from my last bike ride in L.A.

- The center in Marina del Rey w/Sugar Fish, Mendocino Farms, Pinkberry, The Counter, Chipotle and Rainbow Acres. Everything I could ever need or want.

- Crosswalks. Crossing the street in India is like playing human Frogger (a line from Outsourced that rings all too true).

- Food. Can’t decide what I’m going to eat first when I get back to L.A.: The mushroom pizza at Waterloo & City, the omakase at Sugar Fish or everything at A-Frame. Has anybody tried it yet?

- The tap water, traffic and pollution. In comparison to Bangalore, L.A. is an oasis. You can drink the tap, get places in less than three hours and actually go running outside without getting black lung.

- Ice in my drinks. Unless you want diarrhea, you have to order your drinks without ice in India. Just like Mexico.

- The Santa Monica Farmer’s Market on Saturday. Oh we are spoiled with all our organic and local goodies in L.A.

- My apartment. Especially my couch from Viesso that just sucks you in. Amazing!

- Cooking and having my Shun knives, Vitamix and pink KitchenAid mixer at my disposal.

- Football! College and NFL. Cricket just doesn’t quite do it for me.

- Time Warner Cable. As much as I hate that monopoly, I love fast, reliable wifi.

- Most obviously, all my friends and family. I wish I had a private jet to shuttle everyone to India. Sir Richard Branson if you are reading this, feel free to volunteer your resources. :)

I’m sure when I get back to L.A., I’ll have a list of things that I miss about India too. I suppose it will be weird not to see livestock in the streets and babies on motorcycles.

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