Locomotoring

Seven continents, seven seas, seven billion people and seven thousand good eats …

Posts Tagged ‘Commentary

Funny zone at Telegraph

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Sign on Leh-Kargil highway

Sign on Leh-Kargil highway

Telegraph is upto week 43 of sign language now, so there are a lot of funny signs to be seen there…

Written by locomotoring

April 4, 2009 at 3:11 pm

Alford and Duguid and parboiled rice

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Husband and wife, Alford and Duguid met on a hotel rooftop in Tibet in 1985. They have been traveling together and writing James Beard Award winning cookbooks since. While leafing through an old copy of New Yorker, I re-discovered them recently. Most of their travels are through South Asia and consequently the cookbooks reflect the tastes and stories of Asia. I present here an excerpt from their introduction to “Seductions of Rice“.

In the course of working on this book, we were walking early one morning along a narrow path past fields of rice just outside Calcutta in Bengal, in India. It was early November, dry season in Bengal, and the sun was already bright and warm. The rice was golden, it was harvest time, and in every field out across a large flat plain as far as we could see, there were groups of villagers working hard cutting and threshing rice. Their voices, together with the songs of birds and the occasional bump of a bicycle riding along a dirt path, were the only sounds to be heard… We were there taking pictures, asking the odd question, but mainly just being there. We were happy to be outside the city at harvest time, to see the water buffaloes chomping on the stubble in the fields already harvested, to see farmers slapping long bundles of cut rice against a threshing table so that the grain would dislodge from the straw.

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Written by locomotoring

April 2, 2009 at 3:58 pm

India’s village tourism

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Recently New York Times published an article on village tourism in India – “Villagers in India Open Their Homes“. Author of this article stayed for three days at a small village called Samthar near Darjeeling, the tea hills of West Bengal.

This is distinct from staying a night at a village as part of an adventure trip. In this case the principal activity for guests at village homestays is observing and joining in the humdrum rhythms of village life. While a local government official was quoted saying that one has to stay for at least 3 months to enjoy and understand the villages, 3 days is a small beginning.

A small beginning to what? That is what I am pondering over.

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Written by Som

March 11, 2009 at 8:47 pm