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Food at Doorstep

So Masterchef Australia has started on Star World Premiere HD [which by the way I nagged D to subscribe as top up channel to our current subscription :-D] There was only one Indian participant, Deepali Mistry, who had cooked dhokla and some potatoes with chutney to get selected in the top 24. Then once she cooked “Gujarati Chicken Curry” as she called it. Gujarati chicken curry??? really?? Gujarati food culture and chicken don’t go together. It is an oxymoron isn’t it? But apparently I am wrong. Google god informed me there are bloggers who have written the recipe for Murghanu Shaak or Gujarati Chicken Curry. Hmmmm!! My food knowledge increased.

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Anyway so this business of cooking..I love doing it and I am even thinking of starting a food blog; but the moment it becomes a daily affair…a monotonous chore…. I dislike it. Thankfully D is a wonderful partner and cook!! Hats off and deep respect to my older generation – my mother, my MIL etc who cooked daily and that too so much variety. I am amazed at the women of my generation who do that with other family responsibilities and jobs…but then the reasons are many. Two of my colleagues don’t own a refrigerator (unbelievable in modern world….reason unknown) and they cook daily after reaching home at 6.30 pm from job. Some other women say their husbands like freshly cooked food daily and some say mother in law wants freshly prepared food daily. Some grumble about it and some don’t.

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But I simply can’t do that!! Daily cooking myself with job and home ..it seems impossible!! Not only I find it boring, but also restricting and exhausting. Thankfully D and I have the same opinion on this!! We have a fridge and we use it. :-) Thankfully MIL also doesn’t support being stuck in the kitchen all day everyday. The only difference in opinion is that MIL strongly disapproves of eating outside. :-D

Some days after a tiring day at work, when we don’t feel like stepping into the kitchen; we tend to go out for dinner. But some days we are just too tired to even go out and wish to get food delivered to our doorstep. There are limited options for ordering food to home…Dominos or Pizza Hut ..that too in my locality only Dominos or Ammi’s Biryani. Other options of food are not available. For such occasions, an online food ordering website like Foodpanda proves to be a blessing! All we have to do is select our place, then choose a restaurant and place our order. The restaurant delivers to our home and we can pay cash on delivery or online!!

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That is such a big rescue and time saver for people like us. Dining out means missing TV serials too!! If I get food delivered to home using Foodpanda I can eat peacefully while watching my favorite show Masterchef Australia at 9.00 pm!! And they have many discounts too at their website for different cities.

In other news I finally got a smart phone. Till now I was a poor Nokia Symbian owner. D gifted me Moto E as a birthday gift in advance. :-) So among one of the apps that I installed [One of the first being Candy Crush ;-)], I installed the Foodpanda app.

Anyway so inspite of my reluctance in cooking daily and laziness to blog, I have decided to launch a food blog because that is a new thing I have not tried yet. I have a regular though dormant blog, a travel blog and a photo blog. So why not a food blog?  Any suggestions for a good name? Apparently Undomestic Goddess and Reluctant Cook are taken. :-( But I think to write exact measurements and stuff in the beginning of a food blog is not my cup of tea. I think my food blog will be more casual type. Hmmmm….

That’s it for now. Hope to post again soon as the academic session has ended at work and now I will get some free and relaxed time till August.

P.S. This is a promotional post for Foodpanda.

Please Encourage Me!!

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.

I love going on trips and visiting places. I am more of a tourist and sightseeing kind of person so when I visit any travel website I like to get complete and practical information about xyz place..not only the places to see but also how they are really, what are the do’s and dont’s, the timings, where to eat etc. I found many travel websites and blogs lacking in that. Some just hyped up few things about a place whereas in reality it was not so cool! Some blogs would focus more on experience and photos and not real useful information! So I decided to mix my hobby of traveling with another passion – blogging! Thus the travel blog “Ghumakkar Chronicles” came into existence where I began writing my travelogues of all the places I have visited.

What is WIN 2014?

WIN 2014 is the first ever Bloggers’ conference which will see a mix of Bloggers, Industry Specialists & Influencers hosted by BlogAdda.  Write. Inspire. Network – The three core elements around which the day long event will revolve. WIN 2014 promises to have something for everyone: Sessions & workshops which will highlight the various aspects of writing for the bloggers. Icons from the blogosphere and renowned speakers who will inspire the budding author in every individual attending the conference. An evening where every blogger, writer, reader, listener, learner will get an opportunity to network with the best of speaker, bloggers & brands. We aim to provide a physical platform to bring together all the knowledge and learning about blogging followed by an evening of recognizing and honouring the best of the blogs that won the hearts of thousands of readers and the esteemed Jury of BlogAdda Blog Awards.

For the contest part of the event, Blogadda’s jury comprising of Shobhaa De, Dilip Cherian, Simi Garewal,Krishna Prasad, Mukul Deva, Ashwin Sanghi, Gayatri Iyer, Vasundhara Das, Arjun Ravi, Pranav Bhasin, Malishka, Jessie Paul, Karl Gomes, Shradha Sharma, Paroma Roy Chowdhury, Ekalavya Bhattacharya and Sabyasachi Gorai have shortlisted blogs in various categories like Arts Crafts and Design, Humor & Satire, Personal, Parenting, Food & Drinks etc

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And my blog “Ghumakkar Chronicles” has been shortlisted by the jury for the Blog Adda awards WIN 2014 in the travel and living category!!! Yayyyy!!!

I was utterly shocked and so happy when I received the notification email from Blogadda. My blog among so many seasoned bloggers!! :) :)  Nothing like such news to renew the blogging spirit and faith!! :)

Public voting is being done by liking and tweeting!

So please please please my dear readers and visitors go over and vote for me!!!! Click the Facebook like button or tweet, to vote, by clicking on the icon below or by going to the page here. You can also leave an encouraging comment on the page to make sure my blog wins!

Make My Blog WIN for BlogAdda Awards

And do share this link with your friends who may like my blog. Thank you for your time!

Voting open till 31st Jan 2014.

Note – In case you can’t see voting options in Firefox, please open the link in Chrome or Internet Explorer.

Thanks once again!!

Windows shopping

I start browsing the internet and open bluestone – the jewellery website.  After a while, with a sigh, I close it and open flipkart. Then in various tabs I open various categories of stuff. I also open Zansaar and Fabfurnish in tabs – furniture (specifically the chest of drawers I have been dreaming of), kitchen tools, decor and what not. I keep closing and opening tab after tab.

D who was sitting beside me with his own laptop struggling to learn python programming, had been seeing my screen from the corner of his eyes apparently and unable to hold his curiosity any more says – “What is going on? What are you trying to buy? You are surfing from jewellery to kitchen stuff to shoes to god knows what! !”

Me – ” I am doing nayansukh (treating my eyes to delights) just like men surf p***. This is the new Windows Shopping because I am doing it on Windows OS” ;) ;) :D :D

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I have been one of the worst bloggers both in writing and reading blogs. Last post was in July when I had taken up daily blogging challenge. After that I got so tired that I again disappeared :P :P Not done at all!! So I have decided to do one more daily posting challenge in the month of December. The blogging marathon begins!!Posted from WordPress for Android

Posted from WordPress for Android

Day 31: Lessons Learned

Phew!! So July is over today. Last few days I have not blogged due to two reasons. Firstly I have been busy at work with the new semester starting on 1st August and second, the lack of comments and/or readers discouraged me to write :( But on the other side, a lot of gratitude is due from my side to Rajesh of Destination Infinity fame to comment on each post during this challenge. Thank you so much DI for being there!

Quoting an article ,

There are four key components that lead to blogging success:

  • quality content
  • frequent updates
  • blog exposure
  • direct interaction with readers

If any one of these components is missing, the blogger is unlikely to maintain the connections and momentum necessary to garner success. While the onus of quality lies entirely on the blogger, the other three components can easily be satisfied by participation in blog challenges.

So I took up the daily posting challenge for the entire July month. I have not been entirely successful in fulfilling my challenge. Out of 31 posts that I should have written, I have written only 23 posts including this one. I tried not to write any run of the mill posts giving daily updates from daily life just to post daily. And writing non personal posts need research and time. Not to mention that UBC thing is useless. They send mails (with blog post prompts) with one day delay according to IST and in that also they miss several times!! Anyway so here are the lessons I learned from this one month exercise.

# A blogger must take up this challenge at least once. It renews and re-energizes the creative juices. One has to forcibly put an end to the writer’s block.

# One must keep some posts scheduled especially over the weekend when one needs to spend time with family in real life. This challenge hones your planning, time management and prioritizing skills.

# Take advantage of photo post themes like Wordless Wednesdays etc when one needs a break from thinking and typing so much.

# Quality of writing improves with regular writing practice. One gains more confidence and knowledge both by writing and researching.

# The pressure of daily post leads to inspiring ideas and topics for blogging. But the same pressure is sometimes frustrating. It starts to feel like a chore and one stops enjoying. Sometimes instead of serving a lavishly and painstakingly prepared dish, one ends up serving a quick fix dish.

# This challenge requires a lot of time commitment. I was able to write 23 posts only because it’s a slow month at work due to semester break. Blogging daily (as well as a day job and chores at home) without a break can be exhausting some days, which explains the breaks I took :) It is my first time!

# Support, blog prompts and comments are essential to keep up the momentum.

# There was a noticeable exposure of my blog ( more internationally than nationally) and Increase in blog traffic. I gained 30 followers on WordPress reader for my blog.

Now the million dollar question – Will I take up the challenge again? Not in recent future and without planning it thoroughly :)

I crossed the finish line! Bhaag Reema Bhaag!!

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Further reading:-

A good read and I agree on all the points. And t think she had taken up 366 days challenge!! Phew! Read it here :-

The 7 advantages and 7 disadvantages of daily blogging

Taking The Plunge

So I have blogged since 5.8 years now and there are few things I have never done on my blog. But now I have decided to do one of those things….i.e. to take the plunge of posting daily for the month of July. :D

Just like electric shock is given to resuscitate a dying patient, my blog also needs a shock. Same goes for the readers ;) Though it may not be the right time given the Google Reader is closing down.

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One of the reasons I can think of taking up this challenge is that we are having semester break at work now. Which means no classes and very less work. :) So people wish me luck and keep reading and commenting to encourage me! I need it badly! :)

I will be taking up a similar challenge at my group photo blog which is almost dead :( Last post was in July 2012!!! Shame on me! So I have decided to post a photo daily on the photo blog. Would love if the photographer in you hops there and subscribes to that blog. :D

So the one month marathon begins……

WP’s Maths is Weak!

WordPress informed me 3 days ago that I had registered on WordPress.com 5 years ago and wished me Happy Anniversary. Errrr..but according to my blogging archives and memory, I have completed 5 yrs already and 6th year is going on!! And none of my other blogs under the same username are anywhere near 5 years! So WP, how come you are saying I registered 5 years ago??

Anyway so the wish and the sentence “Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!” shamed me into writing a post. I have not been a good blogger at all since last two years. :(

I didn’t write a post on my 3rd marriage anniversary which was like the easiest post to write because both of us spent 75% of the day in train traveling from Kolkata to Bangalore!! We had gone to Kolkata in Jan end during my one week vacation at work.

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That is taken at Poovar in Kerala….Both of us and my parents went on a trip to Kanyakumari – Poovar in March. It was awesome! Travelogue??….Ahem..ahem..cough…ummm..coming soon when I get around to write it!!

I didn’t write a post on the 2nd birthday of my dearest niece which was also a very easy post to write..just post one of her cute pics and gush about her :D or maybe just a pic and a wish would have sufficed :)

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I even pledged (in my mind) that from 1st June I will take up month-long writing exercise as in daily posting challenge but due to session end time at work, 1st June just flew by!! :( And once you don’t start the challenge on the first day, it doesn’t feel like one! It is not proper! So I have rescheduled it to July. Sigh!!

But for this month I will post more than just this one post. And read more of your lovely blogs! That reminds me…how horrible it is that Google is shutting down its Reader service on 1st July!! why couldn’t these essential and wonderful services be forever? Now I have to clear up my backlog and learn the working of a new feed aggregator. Humph!! By the way, here are two good links Google Reader Is Shutting Down; Here Are the Best Alternatives and Five Best Google Reader Alternatives to help you choose a new feed subscriber. I have chosen Feedly. How about you?

That reminds me…my anniversary gift. D gifted me Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 P3100 and it was a good deal with that Samsung own now plan!! Loving it!! [ Though I am using it to play Angry Birds mostly :D :D ]

samsung_galaxy_tab_23100Enough for today….See you all again soon!!

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

19,000 people fit into the new Barclays Center to see Jay-Z perform. This blog was viewed about 150,000 times in 2012. If it were a concert at the Barclays Center, it would take about 8 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Oh my god! January is already ending and I have not posted a single post this year! Even when WordPress itself provides us bloggers with this ready-made post every year-end. :D I have not even wished my dear readers on new year! But then I guess we can wish till January is not over :P So, my dear readers and visitors

Happy New Year!! Have A Great 2013!!

My 10 days semester end vacation at work is starting from tomorrow! Yayy! And we are traveling to Kolkatta to visit my in-laws. My first travel of 2013! We wanted to go to Sunderbans  but not enough time. But then a vacation is a vacation only when one goes to one’s parents’ home :D :D

WordPress report tells me “Some of your most popular posts were written before 2012. Your writing has staying power! Consider writing about those topics again.” Sigh!! :( Why oh why am I not getting inspiration to blog? :( Actually I think it is the laziness to type which is a more deterrent reason than lack of inspiration. Sometimes so many thoughts and blog post ideas pop in my head on some incident or other and I want to blog them but I don’t get around to doing it. Albus Dumbledore had a Pensieve and he said “I use the Pensieve. One simply siphons the excess thoughts from one’s mind, pours them into the basin, and examines them at one’s leisure”. How I wish there was a Pensieve type of device which could download my thoughts and words in my head and transfer them into written text on my blog(s) and post the blogpost!

Imagine I am sightseeing some tourist place and I could live blog my views, feelings and tips simultaneously!! How cool would that be!! :cool: I would never have any backlog. As soon I think about a topic..as soon as I form the words in my mind, its ready to be posted! It would have a spelling and grammar checker too. :D Maybe I should give my students this device as a project! :twisted:

*Wishful thinking ends*

Off on vacation now! Hope to blog from there!

The Post Tag

It has been a long time since I did any tag on my blog. And before the year ends, I should post on my dearest but highly neglected blog. In fact there are three more things I need to do on my blog like all other bloggers before year ends – write a protected post, invite another blogger to do a guest post and take up a NaBloPoMo challenge and flood the inbox-es/ Google readers etc of my blog followers!! Maybe I will make these my new year blog resolutions :D

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One Way or Two Way

I believe serious blogging comprises of four important things :

# Presentation – Writing good quality posts (whatever type one write about) regularly at one’s blog and being active.

# Communication – Actually reading subscribed blogs’ posts and commenting on them (and not just writing anything for comment’s sake..just to mark your presence).

# Reciprocation – Replying to comments on one’s posts.

# Networking – Checking out regular commentators’ blogs or new blogs..you know like friends of friend and possibly subscribing to those thus extending your network and acquiring long-term blogging relationships.

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Annual Report – 2011

Looking back on 2011 :D :D

जनुअरी में हेरोयिन के साथ फोटो खिंचवाई,

फेब्रुअरी में शादी की पहली अन्नीवेरसारी मनाई,

मार्च में बनी नन्ही पारूल की मासी,

अप्रैल में पति बन गए पुणे से बंगलोर वासी,

मई में किया थीसिस गाइड को रज़ामंद,

जून में हो गई ग़लती से बाथरूम में बंद,

जुलाई में नौकरी से रिश्ता तोड़ा,

अगस्त में माँ-बाप का घर छोड़ा,

सितम्बर में एम. ई. की परीक्षा किया पास,

अक्टूबर में बंगलोर दर्शन किए ससुर-सास,

नवम्बर में फेमिना ने छापा मेरा नाम,

दिसम्बर में किया नॉवेल समालोचना का काम,

ये था हिसाब ऑफ़ मेरा बीता हुआ साल,

आप सब का २०१२ हो मस्त, स्वस्थ और खुशहाल

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My Random Thoughts 2.0

As my readers may remember, I have moved to Bangalore or Bengaluru. It has been 3 months now. I haven’t started working yet and in-laws are here since two months…new place, new life, new routines were responsible for the blogging break. So, here are some random updates, thoughts and comments from the last three months of my blogging break. Hence the title… a new “My Random Thoughts” BREAK KE BAAD :D

# My M.E. results were declared at last…scored 73.5% aggregate. Yeyyyy!!!

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