The Daily Post Photo Challenge : Wish

Shinto is the dominant religion in Japan, though it is more of a way of life than a way to worship.Visitors to Shinto shrines can purchase small wooden plaques called ema, upon which they can share their hopes and dreams. Then, they hang them amongst other ema from people who have come before them, in the hopes that spirits will grant their wish This week, show us a wish.

“World without hatred

And violence of all kinds

A wish we all wish.

Quiet and a serene life

A wish that is but a dream.”

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The serene waters of the lake in our place makes me wish that life everywhere could be as serene. A dream, no doubt, but we can always wish.

The Daily Post Photo Challenge : Wish

 

 

The Daily Prompt : Chaos

Reading in the newspapers
About violence
Here, there and everywhere.
And then about
The destruction of
Nature’s resources
For the never ending
Greed of man.
To make matters worse
Politicians who are
A class into themselves
And live for power and wealth,
Are bent upon
Making money for generations.
It seems as if there is
Chaos across the world.
But there must be
Something good everywhere,
Life goes on
With all its ups and downs.
There is always
The good,the bad and ugly.
In spite of everything,
It is good to believe
There is not enough
Darkness in the world
To extinguish the
Light of a small candle.

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Share a Slice #SOL 2020

slice-of-life_individual

Everyday Moments
21-01-2020
My weekly Slice of Life are my letters to my Doddamma. She is my father’s elder brother’s wife. Doddamma literally means ‘elder mother’. She is 88 years old. She cannot hear properly if I telephone to talk to her. So, I have been writing letters to her since October 2017. I enjoy writing letters and she is happy to read them. They are only about the everyday moments in my life. I post my letters to her every week.
My letters to my doddamma are about our trip to Amritsar and Dharamsala between 1st and 9th of this month. So I am sharing the same in my Slice of Life post.

Amritsar – 3-01-2020
The weather was so cold and it was a pleasure to sleep under warm woolen blankets. This morning we got up at 8.15 😊. I don’t remember when last I woke up so late. Vacations are meant for relaxing. This is one of the reasons we do not like going on organized tours. On our own, we can spend the day as we want to.
Amritsar is famous for its food. Before leaving home, we had read articles about what we should eat and drink, and where while in Amritsar. Wherever we go, we enjoy the local food.

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We set out from our hotel in search of a very famous ‘dhaba’ called Kulwant Bhai Kulchewala. The dhaba was not very far from our hotel. We walked through narrow streets to reach it. It was a small place, crowded and people were enjoying the food. My husband and I had Aloo (potato) kulcha and Aravind had Paneer kulcha. Chole, onion-tamarind chutney and gooseberry pickle were served as side dishes. We also drank the famous lassi of Amritsar. It was very tasty.

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Feeling full and satisfied we set out towards the main square. It was a cobbled square teeming with people. The aroma of delicious snacks being fried came from all sides, mainly pakodas. We sat on one of the wooden chairs, just looking at people. A small boy came selling ball pens. He kept insisting that we should purchase from him. We bought two. They were good. There were shops on either side. Some were selling clothes, mainly salwar suits with Phulkari work. Others were selling shoes called Punjabi Juttis. Woolen clothes and pagdis (turban) were on sale. Wagah border between India and Pakistan is a popular tourist attraction. Taxi drivers were calling out to people to hire them. But we did not want to go to the Border. We never even considered going there. We entered a Tibetan handicraft shop. Aravind purchased a Singing Bowl and a Pashmina shawl for his sister.

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( To the right of this gate is the Partition museum)

From there we walked on to the Partition Museum. It was opened in 2016. Every step inside the building was an emotional experience. People from South India can never truly understand the horrors of the partition of our country. We came to know about the life of those people affected by the partition stretching from the early 1900s till after the division of the country in 1947. The seeds of the partition lie in 1905 and 1906, when initially Bengal was partitioned on religious lines, and later there was a rift between the Indian National Congress and its Muslim members. I am really grateful to all those people who got together and carried out the research to make the museum a reality. It would be wrong to forget some events in life. We spent several hours there.

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The historical Jallianwala bagh was at one end of the square. That was the place were innocent people were massacred one hundred years ago. We grew up reading about it.

It was time for lunch and we set out in search of another eatery called Kesar da Dhaba. We asked one person the direction and he told us about another restaurant nearby. He said it was a much better one. We went there but no one seemed interested enough to ask what we wanted. We walked out. We decided to search for Kesar da Dhaba. We walked along narrow roads and people told us to go straight and then left and then right and so on 😊. It was a veritable warren of lanes. There were small eateries selling pakodas and carrot halva and so many other things. The lanes were very narrow and on top of that two wheelers were parked on one side. Shops on either side were selling many glittering things, I think mainly for tourists 😊. Cycle rickshaws and motor bikes were being driven here. We had to be very careful while walking. At last we reached the place. It was very crowded. We had to wait for ten minutes for a table. The waiter told us that my husband and I could share a plate. It was good of him to tell us that otherwise it would have been a little too much for us. There was two chapatis, dal, rice, boondi raita and pickles. We drank lassi. Aravind had aloo paratha, lachcha paratha and kadi. The food was tasty but too greasy for comfort😊. But it felt good in the cold weather. At home we use very little oil and in Punjab we felt too much of it was used in their cooking. But it is good to taste the local food.

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We walked back to the hotel and rested for a while. At 6.30 we went to GT. We walked around then sat on one side, just soaking in the atmosphere of the place. We took Kada Prasad again 😊. This time we did not go into the shrine. There are hundreds of people going in at all times. We went to the Langar hall for food. Today we were served roti, black dal, rajma and rice kheer. We walked back slowly to the hotel. A wonderful day.

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https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g303884-d7221908-Reviews-Bhai_Kulwant_Singh_Kulchian_Wale-Amritsar_Amritsar_District_Punjab.html

https://hebbarskitchen.com/amritsari-kulcha-recipe-aloo-kulcha/
https://hebbarskitchen.com/chana-masala-recipe-chole-masala/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhaba
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paneer
http://amritsardekho.com/amritsar-food/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jallianwala_Bagh_massacre

The World’s First Partition Museum


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kesar_Da_Dhaba
https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/lachedar-paratha-recipe-lachedar-paratha/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phulkari
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jutti

Three-things-challenge #120

2020-logo.jpg Three things challenge

Every day I’ll give you three words that will hopefully trigger your creativity.
No need to use them all if you don’t want to, simply read the prompt and see what it brings to mind.
You can use the 3TC, #threethingschallenge or TTC as a tag and the new logo if you wish.
There are no restrictions regarding length, style, or genre apart from keeping it family friendly.
Have fun!

Your three words today are:
TEA
NAP
MAT

These words reminded me of our short naps after lunch. We sleep either on the floor or spread a mat and lie down on it. We take a nap for about fifteen minutes. It would be nice to drink a glass of hot tea after the nap, nicer still if someone handed me that while I relaxed on the mat 😊. But, usually it is too early for a glass of tea.

#SoCS – Jan. 18th

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Your prompt for # Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “movie title.” Take the title of the last movie you watched (just the title, not the premise of the movie), and base your post on that title. Have fun!

This prompt brought home the fact that we have not seen a movie for a long time. Thinking about it, I realised my last movie was a Hindi one called ‘Barfi’ in 2012 !! The two main characters in the movie were disabled but I don’t really remember much about it.
Barfi is also a dessert. It is usually a little hard and is cut into pieces. We can make barfis with Bengal gram flour or with coconut. They can also be made with carrots and beetroots, sweet potatoes and ash gourd too. At different times I have tried out many of them. But now it has been a long time since I have made any. We get from our favourite sweet shop whenever we feel like eating. Recently we had been to Amritsar and we got a popular barfi made there called ‘patisa’. It is another version of ‘Soan Papdi’. It is made from Bengal gram flour. It was tasty.

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Coming back to movies, my husband used to watch Hindi and Kannada movies frequently during his college days in the early seventies. Even now he remembers the names of the directors of those movies. Songs and dance are an integral part of our movies. Even after more than forty years he remembers the Lyric writes, the music composers and the singers. Though I do not remember such details, I do remember the songs and actors and singers. But now, we have moved away from movies. The very thought of watching movie is not welcome. I prefer reading a book 😊.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barfi

https://hebbarskitchen.com/easy-milk-powder-burfi-

recipe/https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gram_flour

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sohan_papdi

Three Things challenge #116

2020-logo.jpg Three things challenge

Every day I’ll give you three words that will hopefully trigger your creativity.
No need to use them all if you don’t want to, simply read the prompt and see what it brings to mind.

You can use the 3TC, #threethingschallenge or TTC as a tag and the new logo if you wish.
There are no restrictions regarding length, style, or genre apart from keeping it family friendly.
Invite us along by creating a pingback to this post, then leave a link in the comments so that other people can read your writings and I’ll see it to respond to you directly.
Bear in mind although the challenge will go out around 6.30am UK time, pingbacks have to be approved manually so might not show immediately if I’m late accessing my blog.
I look forward to reading your responses.
Have fun!
Your three words today are:
SECRET
MARSHMALLOWS
LUCK

‘ Soft and spongy piece

Never tasted marshmallow

Sweet experience.’

 

 

Everyday Moments- (Write. Share. Give. #SOL20)

slice-of-life_individual

My weekly Slice of Life are my letters to my Doddamma. She is my father’s elder brother’s wife. Doddamma literally means ‘elder mother’. She is 88 years old. She cannot hear properly if I telephone to talk to her. So, I have been writing letters to her since October 2017. I enjoy writing letters and she is happy to read them. They are only about the everyday moments in my life. I post my letters to her every week.

2-01-2020

Amritsar, Punjab

We planned our vacation a few months ago. We wanted to go to Amritsar, home of the Golden Temple (GT) or Harmandir Sahib and to Mcleodganj in Dharamsala. The Dalai Lama visits the Tsuglakhang Temple, popularly known as the Dalai Lama temple two or three times in a year.

We left on the 1st evening for Hyderabad. We stayed the night with anna (elder brother). On 2nd morning our flight to Amritsar was at 8 o’clock. I always feel a little apprehensive when the plane takes off since there is nothing under us. But when we go above the clouds it is like being in a different world. The clouds look like the infinite ocean.

We reached Amritsar at 11. We had to put on our sweaters as it was very cold. Our hotel was very near the Golden temple which is in the older part of the city. We told the driver that we would call the hotel and the receptionist would give the directions but they had more faith in the GPS. At the end we had to take an electric autorickshaw 😊 from one point as the roads were too narrow. Only electric autorickshaws are allowed near GT. The narrow alleys of the old part of the city with shops and eateries on both sides are fascinating. Our hotel was good and the staff helpful.

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We went to the G T at 2.15, just five minutes away. At the entrance there is a shoe and baggage counter. We kept our footwear there. Before entering the temple complex we have to cross a stream of running water to clean our feet. All have to cover their heads and scarves are provided. I covered my head with my shawl.

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Entering the complex was like entering a different world. On the right side is the AkalTakth and on the left, the entrance to the Golden Temple. It is a small and beautiful shrine. We joined the queue and slowly made our way towards the sanctum. The temple was as beautiful inside as it was on the outside. There are floral designs on the wall and some inscriptions too. There are carpets everywhere for people to sit. In the central chamber the Adi Granth was being read. We sat outside the sanctum for some time and then went to the first floor. We sat there too. There was peace and serenity in the air. We were inside the temple for more than an hour. It was a divine experience. We were given Kada Prasad when we came out of the temple. The prasad is made from wheat flour, ghee and sugar. It was delicious.

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That day ( 2nd January) was the birthday of Guru Gobind Singh, the spiritual leader of the Sikhs. We were lucky to be there. There were fireworks. Hymns were sung continuously. Thousands of diyas and candles were lit. The final Ardas or the ultimate prayer address to the Almighty was powerful and touched the heart. Everyone was standing and when the hymn ended all knelt, facing the temple and touched their head to the ground. It was an emotional moment too. Then we went to the Langar hall to have food. The feeling of service and devotion is inherent in the temple complex. All are welcome to eat food that is served there. We were served chapati, dal, a vegetable dish and rice kheer. Devotees do all the work as part of their service to God. There is no discrimination at all. We learnt that food is served twenty fours a day.

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The Golden temple is closed from 11 pm to 22 am when the Guru Granth Sahib is taken from the temple to the Akal Takth.
That day was an amazing day. Being in the temple complex, watching all the devotees and soaking in the atmosphere is an experience of a life time. We went back to the hotel at 8.30.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harmandir_Sahib
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akal_Takht
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guru_Gobind_Singh
https://www.republicworld.com/lifestyle/festivals/guru-gobind-singh-jayanti-2020-significance-of-the-festival.html
https://www.learnreligions.com/illustrated-prashad-recipe-2993137

50,000 Free Hot Meals a Day and 9 Other Amazing Facts About the Langar at the Golden Temple


https://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Golden_Kitchen

#SoCS 2020 – Jan. 11th

socs-badge-2019-2020

Your prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “the first 3 words of the first full sentence.” Okay, follow me here. This is what I want you to do: 1. Grab the closest book to you when you sit down to write your post. 2. Open it to a random page. 3. Locate the first complete sentence on that page. 4. Use the first three words of that sentence to start your post, then take it from there–write whatever comes to mind. That’s it! Have fun!

I am reading ‘From the Holy Mountain’ by William Dalrymple.
The first three words of the complete sentence on page 72 are ‘Back at the’…

Back at the hotel after spending the whole evening at the Golden Temple was like returning from another world, a divine and spiritual world to the mundane. We were on a vacation from 1st January to 9th January. We had wanted to go to Amritsar, home of the Golden Temple and to Dharamsala, home to Dalai Lama.
Our hotel was very near to the temple. We went there every evening and it was like being in a different world. Devotees kept coming at all times. The feeling of devotion and of service is felt in every part of the temple complex. People are served food (Langar) at all times, day and night. The temple is in the middle of a man-made pond. Seeing the golden temple reflected in the water adds to that special feeling inherent in the place.
I will post photos which say so much more than words but being there was an experience of a life time. We were happy that we decided to go to Amritsar. And the cold was another new experience, there and in Dharamsala 😊. When we told people there that our place does not have a winter season, they were surprised😊.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langar_(Sikhism)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harmandir_Sahib

Wishes

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DEAR FRIENDS,

WE WISH YOU ALL A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR.

BEING A PART OF WORDPRESS IS ONE OF THE BEST PARTS OF MY LIFE. I AM COMING INTO CONTACT WITH WONDERFUL PEOPLE FROM DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE WORLD. I AM LEARNING SOMETHING EVERY DAY AND IT IS REWARDING IN EVERY WAY.

THANK YOU DEAR  FRIENDS

WITH BEST WISHES,

LAKSHMI BHAT

‘ Not by appointment do we meet delight Or joy; they heed not our expectancy; But round some corner of the streets of life they of a sudden greet us with a smile.’
Gerald Massey

Everyday Moments ( #SOL- 2019)

slice-of-life_individual
25-12-19
My weekly Slice of Life are my letters to my Doddamma. She is my father’s elder brother’s wife. Doddamma literally means ‘elder mother’. She is 88 years old. She cannot hear properly if I telephone to talk to her. So, I have been writing letters to her since October 2017. I enjoy writing letters and she is happy to read them. They are only about the everyday moments in my life. I post my letters to her every week.

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( this was in December 2017 in my daughter’s home in Germany.)

We wish all my friends in WordPress a very Happy Christmas and a wonderful new year.

Last week, one night, my niece called by WhatsApp video call from Bombay. She was in my Doddamma’s house. We talked to my doddamma. She said she was very happy to read our letters. She was feeling sorry that she could not reply and told me she waits for our letters. I told her I would definitely write to her every week. She and my mother are very close. In November 2017, my mother had been diagnosed Lymphoma. She is fine now but she has lost a lot of weight. She was never thin 😊. Doddamma was worried to see her thin and asked us to look after her well. She was feeling very concerned. In my letter to her I wrote all that my mother was doing to keep herself fit.

Last week we enjoyed the company of my younger brother and family. They live in Australia and come for a vacation every year. We enjoyed our evening walks. My nephews enjoyed the dosas and chutney I prepared for breakfast. They liked the sambhar and rasam and puliyogare. I told them it was a pleasure to cook for them as they enjoyed the food 😊.

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(my mother and younger brother)

There was unrest not far from our place due to a Citizenship Amendment Act. There was curfew and data connection was suspended. This was the first time it was happening so close home. On the 20th my brother and family were going to the airport and they had to go on the inner roads to reach the airport. Fortunately, they had left early. It is scary when such things happen.

Yesterday, my cousin, her husband and daughter came for lunch. They had come to visit some of their close relatives. My cousin’s husband is not too well. He is eighty and wanted to see his close relatives. We enjoyed their visit.
Life goes on and we change and so many changes happen. Wonder what the future holds for us. We just have to take life as it comes.

Life is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing.
Denis Waitley
https://hebbarskitchen.com/puliyogare-gojju-recipe-tamarind-rice/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizenship_(Amendment)_Act,_2019

#SoCS Dec. 21/19

socs-badge-2019-2020

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “ingle.” Find a word that contains “ingle” and use it any way you’d like in your post. Have fun!

I am a member of a Facebook group called Senior Reading Raccoons. It is a group of book lovers. I got to know about many authors and their books in this group. I am now reading This could change everything by Jill Mansell. I am enjoying the book very much. One of the characters tells another character about several incidents in a single day which changed his life forever. That day was the turning point in his life.

That reminded me of the memoirs of my paternal grandfather. He lived from 1893 to 1980. He lived in a small village with his parents, uncles and their families. He went to primary school in his village. The nearest town was far away and he could not go to the high school there. He worked on the farm.

Due to certain circumstances his father had to move to that town in search of work. At the age of 17 my grandfather joined first form. He was much older than his classmates. He writes that moving to the town and joining high school was the turning point in his life. He continued his studies and completed BA Honours. He became a teacher and went on to become the Head Master of the Municipal High School in a place called Hospet, far from his home town. He lived there till he retired. He was loved and respected by his students and staff. He gave his children good education. His legacy continues.

I believe there is a turning point in each person’s life.

It is really fascinating how a few lines in a book bring back precious memories. Stream of consciousness is helping me to express my feelings. Thank you Linda.

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(This photo was taken in 1940. My grandparents with my father in the middle. The two girls are my father’s elder sisters. The young man with glasses is my father’s elder brother.)

 

 

Everyday Moments ( #SOL-2019)

slice-of-life_individual

My weekly Slice of Life are my letters to my Doddamma. She is my father’s elder brother’s wife. Doddamma literally means ‘elder mother’. She is 88 years old. She cannot hear properly if I telephone to talk to her. So, I have been writing letters to her since October 2017. I enjoy writing letters and she is happy to read them. They are only about the everyday moments in my life. I post my letters to her every week.

17-12-19
My brother-in-law called yesterday evening to say that my father-in-law had not eaten anything the whole day and had also been sleeping the whole time. He was worried. My husband went to be with his father. Later my brother-in-law called to say that he had woken up and had eaten food. My husband will return tomorrow morning. Actually, he had been to our village to attend the death anniversary function of his father’s elder brother in his ancestral house.

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( the ancestral home, photo taken in the 1950s)

We are enjoying the company of my younger brother and family. They live in Australia and have come for their yearly vacation. I am cooking our traditional food for our nephews and they are enjoying them. Yesterday I made groundnut copra chutney powder. It is very tasty. We all like it. I make fresh coconut chutney for breakfast but it is nice to have a dry chutney too. We get them in the market but I like to make them at home. We have started getting oranges. We like rasam made with orange peel. I also make orange peel flavoured chutney powder.

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We all love books so there is a lot to talk. They are leaving for Hyderabad on the 20th. My elder brother lives there. We are enjoying our evening walks. My mother was happy to introduce my brother to her walking friend.

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Last week I went to Asare. I was cutting the organdie material for making petals for the roses. This material is bought form a wholesale market in Bangalore. The material has to be a little stiff for the petals to look nice. While leaving I told them I would come on the 21st as my brother and family will be with us.
2019 is coming to an end. Lot of unrest is happening in the political front. I wonder what the coming year will be like.

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“Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come,
Whispering ‘it will be happier’…”
― Alfred Lord Tennyson