It’s been over a month since I got back from my whirlwind trip around North East India this summer. We spent most of the holidays in my husband’s hometown of Shillong (Meghalaya), and I am really missing the cooler weather, the lazy midday siestas and the food… oh the glorious street food!
I believe the food offerings of a city are a direct reflection of the cultural norms of the region, and what better way to explore Shillong than to take to the streets and eat like the locals? Being a Shillong boy himself, my husband was my most trusty food-exploring guide.
My whirlwind trip to India now feels like a distant dream. Where did a whole month go? We spent the major chunk of our holiday in the beautifully picturesque town of Shillong.
My Hubby calls Shillong home, and spent his entire childhood here. Every nook of the city seems to hold a fond memory for him, and despite being away for countless years, he proves to be an expert tour guide, leading me through miles of endlessly narrow streets and cobbled stairs.
When exploring a city, I like to take to the streets like a local. Sure, a fancy hotel stay is a much-needed rejuvenating treat but I had under 24 hours to backpack around Guwahati, the capital city of Assam (North East India) and ofcourse it involved a major eatathon!
Guwahati is a maddening chaos. The streets are jam-packed with traffic, hawkers and bystanders.
We walked through its streets this monsoon-laden Monday. The air is hot and muggy, and the humidity shrouds the body with a permanent layer of perspiration, making my flimsy cotton t-shirt stick on like a second skin.
My father in-law has a very endearing caretaker who originates from the Garo Hills. Swing is a short, middle-aged man with a rather muscular stature and a deep, dark chocolate-brown complexion, and has been a part of this family ever since I married into it. Yes, his name is Swing! Given his fondness for the bottle and a very jovial disposition, this name seems pretty apt for him. Sparse teethed yet ever-smiling, Swing has formed a special friendship with my daughter who he last saw as a 2 year-old. My daughter does not speak any Indian regional languages, and Swing has very limited use of the English tongue. Yet the other afternoon, I saw him sitting there trying to tell her a story in colloquial Hindi.
Always keen on hearing some regional-style storytelling myself, I sat down to listen and offered to be the translator between the two. Swing narrated the story of Gangbo Raja, a folktale that has been passed down generations in the Garo Hills.
Where are you heading off this summer? If you are a major foodie like me, you’d take to Google to plan out your foodie trail in the little time you’ve got at your destination. However, an even better bet is having a local friend who’s lived and eaten around the city. Today we are exploring Toronto (Canada) through the tastebuds of my very special friend Upa Hazarika. Upa and I go back a long, long time and have been friends since we were wee toddlers. Trust me, this girl has great taste when it comes to eating out 🙂 Read on about her recent trip back to her hometown Toronto.
One idle, sunny afternoon, my siblings and I headed to The Square, the heart of the city of Palmerston North, New Zealand. After a few mundane grocery chores, my sister treated us to a taco lunch.
She has been raving about Dos Locos Taco since I landed in New Zealand. This Mexican food truck has been setting trails ablaze in the foodie scene of Palmerston North. Owned and operated by a very lovely couple of Mexican and South American descent, the business first started off in New York, America’s street-food central.
With a population just over 80K and covering an area of 336 square kilometers, my gorgeous little hometown of Palmerston North, New Zealand can be considered pretty tiny by global comparisons.
However, this little city has earned itself a number of titles. It is known as the ‘Knowledge City’ of New Zealand, given the number of highly reputable educational institutions it houses for its size (the biggest, and oldest campus being Massey University from where I proudly earned my three tertiary degrees in Marketing).
Palmerston North is also known as the ‘City of Roses’ owing to its very well-loved Dugald Mackenzie Rose Garden.
A week before Christmas, a group of us found ourselves locked up in a room. Imagine the scenario: Lured into taking a free hotel room by a religious cult, we had a mere one hour to escape, or get brainwashed and risk a miserable death.
This is Brainscape Dubai. A brand new gaming concept imported from the UK where you actually pay to get locked up with a team of 3 to 5 adults, and play against the clock to find the key out.