Welcome to my happy place!

I clicked this picture last year when I went back to my hometown, and paid a visit at my school, one of my favorite places ever. This old tree stump with the knotty, gnarled texture has been the same for as long as I can remember. And I am certain it’s been this way for far more years before that. It lies in one corner of the kindergarten playground in my school, wedged somewhere between the monkey-pole, the merry-go-round and the hedges. It must have seen generations of schoolgirls walk in and pass out of the school, playing games, sharing secrets, growing up. Sometimes constants do bring such a comforting feeling.

More from the Weekly Photo Challenge here!

He was the one raising her. It was true. even though he was still a child himself. Ten years old.”

I have previously read Khaled Hosseini‘s The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns. Both these books made me admire the author’s workI had been looking for And the Mountains Echoed for quite some time and luckily a friend lent it to me. The story revolves around a brother-sister duo who are inseparable and completely devoted to each other as the only real family. It follows their story through time and draws out a beautiful story of love, separation and longing. As always, there are several intertwined sub-plots weaving through Hosseini’s text, and it is interesting to see how they are ultimately tied together. A good read, all in all, especially if you have read his previous books. Always nice to complete a set, right?!

When I looked back through my album of Copenhagen from our road-trip earlier this year, what really popped out at me was the multicolored snapshots of the city. It is not just wall graffiti, as I shared in my previous accounts of street art in Barcelona or those in Athens, but there were several installations that makes this city so vibrant and brings together people in a special way. All the flowers seemed bright & happy in their full spring glory!

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And then there is Christiania, a self-proclaimed autonomous ‘region’ inside of Copenhagen which claims to be not a part of the EU, but is rather governed by its own Christiania Law of 1989. Visitors are gracefully allowed inside, but asked to be respectful of the citizens and not bother them by wielding cameras all over the place. There is food & drinks and knick-knacks you could buy, or simply walk around the streets and listen to people singing or playing musical instruments, or watch children play in charming DIY playpens. And of course, there is that undeniable whiff of weed in the air. It’s an extraordinary feeling inside, so atypical as though from a book or a movie, but unfortunately I don’t have pictures to help describe it. There are a few from the vicinity of the neighborhood, though.

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Try this tuna

My experiment with tuna patties turned out to be a big hit with Mr.A the other day. And I am being totally modest when I say I agreed with him ;) Let me share the recipe with you, too, and then you can decide if this is worth trying…

What you’ll need:

  • 1 can flaked tuna, drained of liquid as far as possible (I had the kind that is in oil, though water would do just fine)
  • 1 medium sized potato, boiled
  • 1 medium sized carrot, boiled
  • ½ cup spinach (I had fresh baby spinach leaves, but thawed from frozen would make no difference)
  • 1 egg
  • 6 tsp semolina grains (you could use flour as an alternative to bind the mixture together)
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp garam masala (optional)
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • red chili powder, to taste (you could replace this with fresh green chili, finely chopped)

How to make the patties:

  • Mash together all the ingredients except the semolina in a single bowl, adding them in any order. You could use a food processor to do this job for you, but I used just my hands. Some people find it messy to work their food with their hands, but being Indian I am used to eating with my hands, so this was no problem at all!
  • When you have a composite mass, start adding the semolina to bind everything together. Add as much or as little semolina as you would need to be able to roll small balls of the mixture. You can roll the balls to any size you prefer.
  • Place each ball on a baking sheet and press down to form a patty. Continue till you have exhausted the mixture and have a neat array of patties on your baking sheet.
  • Pop the baking sheet into the refrigerator for about ½ an hour to make them a bit firmer. This helps in handling them while frying when you flip them on the pan.
  • Once you have waited out the ½ hour, bring out as many as you want to eat right then and shallow fry over a medium heat. Flip them over till both sides are crispy.
  • You could also deep fry them, but I prefer the lesser devil ;)
  • Enjoy with some ketchup or hot sauce!
  • The rest of the patties (if you still have any in the fridge) can go into the freezer for another happy meal.


Inhale and hold the evening in your lungs.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ~Sebastian Faulks, Engleby

Stockholm City Hall

Update: I posted this picture three weeks ago, and it was just apt for the ‘Silhouette’ prompt at The Daily Post‘s Weekly Photo Challenge, I decided to run an update. 

 More from quotes here!

More from the photo challenge here!

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