April 26, 2015

Foodpanda And Ordering In!


If you have been a regular reader of my blog, you would know how much I detest cooking. Cooking to me is what studying is to a child who only wants to play. Trust me I can do anything to avoid cooking and by anything, I mean anything at all! Thus, would you be surprised if I said that online food ordering is a boon to me?

While living in Koramangala, restaurants and take away joints were not only in abundance but also at a stone's throw from our place. Hence, we would often eat out. But ever since we moved to Hosa Road, that has reduced drastically except for weekends. Well, it's still a developing part of the city hence it would take some time before restaurants come up in plenty around here. But that doesn't mean I gave up, does it?

So, while eating out seemed like an option tucked away only for holidays, ordering food online became a ritual. And all of that began with foodpanda India. Hence, today I'll talk about this wonderful website that has helped me avoid the kitchen with elan!

Foodpanda India

If you have used foodpanda, you would know how simple it is to order food through it. You just need to filter restaurants based on your city and location. With that done, foodpanda offers you a list of options. Those you can filter further based on popularity, ratings, online payment options, minimum order value, delivery fee and even fastest delivery. Then there is also the option of sieving through the list based on cuisines which I always do based on what I'm craving for at that moment. So, filter, select, order and repeat is what you need to do and like me you too would be saved from toiling away in the kitchen. 

Foodpanda India

If you are anything like me, a food lover who absolutely dislikes cooking or someone who just doesn't have the time to enter the kitchen then you should definitely try out foodpanda. If you haven't already, that is.

Foodpanda India

As always this weekend as well I was too lazy to cook. And with my sister and a few friends coming over, I thought why not just rely on foodpanda for all the food that we need? And that's exactly what I did! The best part was that we all had good restaurant food within the comforts of our home without having to go out in Bangalore's incessant rains. So, we avoided traffic, rains and had delicious food while having a quality time talking with friends at home. Now, that wouldn't have been possible without foodpanda for I would have been in the kitchen half the time or stuck in traffic maybe!

So tell me do you like cooking or just ordering food online? If yes, which website do you use?

Foodpanda India



April 24, 2015

Summer With Linens


Dressing well is a form of good manners. – Tom Ford

While what you wear or the way you dress may not seem something on which your life might someday depend, it is definitely something that cannot be ignored. How you dress goes a long way in determining people’s perception of you. It also often decides how seriously you are taken by the people around you. So, even though dressing well might not be a question of national security, it certainly is one of high scrutiny.

Since, summer is already here, a season where looking good could actually be quite laborious, I thought why not talk about a fabric which is perfect for this scorching weather. Linen. Yes, this textile made from flax plant fits perfectly into anything and everything that has to do with dressing and summer.

Source freedigitalphotos.net by nuttakit
I think linen has two very important qualities that make it an absolute must, suave and classy. I for one am totally sold just on those two. It has a forever quality to it. Now, how many fabrics can actually claim to do that? Not many I’m sure. Having been in use since ancient times, linen today is a favorite even of the top fashion designers around the world. And what’s even better? It can be used for formal and casual wear.

Of all the attires you could come up with using linen, I have personally always loved the shirts and trousers. I cannot come out of a store without picking one, of course if the store happens to have one. Whether it is the colors, so soothing to the eyes or the feel, linen for me is the fabric of choice. And it’s so easy to look great in linen, look good and sophisticated if I might add.

Take your light colored linen trousers, team those up with a dark colored shirt, embellished with just a scarf and you are ready to go.  That’s how simple it is with linen. And those linen shirts go very well with ethnic skirts. Whether long sleeves or short, linen is just perfect as it lets the summer breeze flow through. I especially like those linen tie front shirts! And dear men, you need to go for those linen suits, trousers and shirts too. Loose fitting or tight, long or short, linen shirts are perfect especially with a messy hairdo for women. And for men, linen shirts with folded hands on top of a perfect fitting trousers is for me the Greek God look. Granted with linens come the wrinkles, but I think those just add to the charm of this fabric with attitude.

Wearing linen gives you a look that is jaw dropping in a very elevated sense. You not only look good, you look like you are in control. Vintage is the word that I would associate with linen. Of course, you can look good, exceptionally good in other fabrics as well, but you have to admit linen has something extra.


April 21, 2015

Frozen Summer & Columbina : A Review

Title: Frozen Summer & Columbina
Source: Goodreads

Grab a copy here: Amazon

Author: Geeta Madhuri & Cynthia Vincent Daniel

About the Book (From Goodreads):

Frozen Summer & Columbina is India's First Ever Double Header book with 2 different stories that fall under the Genre - Psychological Thriller.

Frozen Summer is a suspense thriller written by Geetha Madhuri (Author of The One and Only Purpose from Time's Lost Atlas)

Columbina is a detective thriller written by Cynthia Vincent Daniel (An enthusiastic blogger who owns the blog - Whispers in the Wind)

Now for my view:

So, I’m here with another book review in less than two days which means I’ve read two books this week. Now, isn’t that great? It is, isn’t it?

Just like Story of Tublu, Frozen Summer & Columbina had also been lying with me for about a month now, also untouched. Sometimes you just can’t get around to doing what you have to due to unpredictability of this entity called health. The same thing happened to me. But, now I’m back on track or at least it looks like I am. So, let’s get on with the review.

Columbina

I have been reading Cynthia on her blog for quite some time now but honestly Columbina was something else altogether. It is a novella, mind you, and it leaves you yearning for more. I particularly loved the setting of the story and the maturity with which the characters were guided along. What’s more is as you go through the pages you realize that the author has actually put in a lot of work on research. It has everything to keep you glued, everything. Columbina being a thriller I wouldn't want to divulge much. Hence, what I’ll do instead is leave you with my takeaways from reading it.


  1.       Un-put-down-able.
  2.          Makes you wish for a sequel.
  3.         Imaginative writing.
  4.          Written after research which comes around as you flip the pages.

Frozen Summer

Columbina and Frozen Summer are as similar as they are different. Similar because they are both thrillers, gripping thrillers. Different because this story is set in an Indian backdrop. The best thing about it is the pace and it doesn’t slack even for a bit. Characters sketched get a huge thumbs up. And the not for a moment while reading will you be bored. Again, it being a thriller I’ll steer clear of the details. Except I’ll summarize my take away from it.


  1.      Pacy
  2.      Crisp
  3.       Simple yet gripping
  4.        Also, un-put-down-able


So, do pick this book up if you get a chance. It’s a refreshing read.

April 20, 2015

A Relaxing Brunch



“Doing something positive will help turn your mood around. When you smile, your body relaxes. When you experience human touch and interaction, it eases tension in your body.” - Simone Elkeles

It makes sense, isn't it? Sometimes you just need to stop and take a breath if not anything else. Life is a movie without intervals and it is up to you to step out, find some time and basically just take a pause. Rest!

After another hectic week, S and I were really hoping for a relaxing weekend this time around. The past few weekends have all been either packed with chores or guests. Now, don't get us wrong we love it when friends and family come visiting but at times we just need to relax, not worry about what to cook for the guests maybe!

But as luck would have it, this Saturday too was a busy one with items that needed to be checked off our to-do list. So, by the time the Sunday sun dawned, we were completely exhausted.

However, S didn't want this weekend too to go by without the two of us doing something for ourselves, to revive our energies. He wanted to go somewhere, try out a new restaurant perhaps but go out of the house at any case. I think this had a little to do with our new cook as well. So, after a careful search of eateries using #MyASUSZenfone, we found ourselves at a wonderful, wonderful place called the Big Brewsky for brunch.

Now, honestly I had never been out for brunch before. Lunch yes, but brunch not really. So, the thought of brunch immediately got my antennas up and running. And since even the talk of eating outside is godsend for me, you can well imagine how happy I was by just being there. Yes, even before the food came into the picture or, well, my plate so to speak.

The Big Brewsky is very close to our home and the ambiance is perfect to spend some time recharging your batteries.Whether it is the music or the seating by the pool, the food or the service, everything elevated our moods instantly. I think S and I spent around 3 to 4 hours there, just siting, sipping on our drinks and talking. While it's good to have friends around when you go out for dinner or anywhere for that matter, sometimes just being with your better half is what is needed. That's just how we felt yesterday.

Yes, yesterday afternoon unfolded perfectly for we came back revitalized. And yes, I even captured the moments with #MyASUSZenfone, to look through later, to just reminisce.







#LakmeSchoolOfStyle: 11 Things Women Should Stop Doing To Each Other


India's leading digital network #fame which is based on the novel concept of 'talent-first' has come together with Lakme to launch India's first video fashion magazine. This, #fame has done by launching the show called 'Lakme School Of Style'. Directed and conceptualized for the mobile, social media oriented millennials, this show is aimed at bringing the latest and the very best in fashion to the screens of your mobiles and laptops.

To achieve that, in almost a coup, it has roped in none other than Karan Johar as the Editor-in-Chief. Hosted around the #fame network, their main objective is to give those talented a chance to bring a paradigm shift in fashion, style and set trends. For Lakme, it is also an avenue to search for something fresh, something unique or never seen before on fashion.

In this post, I'll talk about one of the videos from #fame #LakmeSchoolOfStyle but first let's have a look at the video below.



11 things women should stop doing to each other, something to be taken very seriously. Isn't it enough that the world judges us all the time that we also have to end up doing the same to each other? Why do we have to pull each other down? Why can't we stop judging each other based on our choices, married or unmarried, with or without children, traditional or modern sense of dressing, et al? Why pretend to be holier than thou to engage in a slug-fest towards women who chose to challenge society? Why can't we make standing behind each other the fashion statement of the century?

So many questions, right? But all very important, all raised by this very relevant video by #fame #LakmeSchoolOfStyle.

One of my favorite authors of the present era J. K Rowling said and I quote 'We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided'. So true, isn't it? I think this video, in a way, gives the same message.

Maybe it's time we stop pulling each other down. If we don't stand together, we are never going to win this war. A battle or two maybe, but definitely not the war. So, taking a cue from this video, all you women out there, let's make supporting each other fashionable. 

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Lakmé School of Style is a first of its kind show that will not only bring the newest trends and happenings from the fashion world but in the process will also create new age fashionistas and idols. A fashion brigade led by Editor-in-Chief, Karan Johar himself will bring the fashion news, views and events from all over the world to the internet screen.

April 17, 2015

Paris, I Wish I Can See You Again..


Some places leave an indelible mark in your heart and soul such is their allure, Paris without a doubt is one among those. You have heard about love at first sight, haven’t you? Well, for me that happened was when I first set eyes on Paris. This beauty by the Seine is, to me, the most magical place in the world.

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” ― Ernest Hemingway

Last week when our Prime Minister was visiting Paris, photographs of the city filled the pages of every Indian newspaper, it was all over the media. Seeing those brought back memories, beautiful memories. In fact, I actually found myself reminiscing those priceless moments spent there. I found myself wishing to be there all over again. Since, I don’t know when that will happen, I decided to take a virtual tour of the city. After all, the next best thing to being there in flesh and blood is to read about the city and its landmarks. And that’s exactly what I did, all with the help of #MyASUSZenfone.

© nabanitadhar.in
The first thing that comes to mind when anyone talks about Paris is the Eiffel Tower. Well, I have to say I haven’t seen anything quite like it so far. Mesmerizing is perhaps the word for it. I had made every attempt to capture its beauty in my memory, while I was there. Its enormity enthralls you if not anything else and the same was the case with me. And now the heart feels an intense pull every time I see it on television. This time though I pacified myself by reading a little about it through #MyASUSZenfone. Did you know that this cultural icon of France was actually erected as the entrance arch to the 1889 World’s Fair? In fact, the structure which is now synonymous to France was initially criticized by some of it's leading artists. I had no idea. And what were they thinking?

© nabanitadhar.in

The Louvre, I think, is the only museum where I wasn't bored even for a moment, one that I would be glad to visit over and over again. You have to see it with your own eyes to believe how magnificent it is. I was swept off my feet. Truth be told I haven’t been to any museum quite like it. Honestly, I was lost in its grandeur but probably that's exactly what happens to everyone who sets foot there. #MyASUSZenfone tells me that it was first opened as a museum in the year 1793. That's a long, long time ago. In fact, it was initially built as a fortress. And during the World War II, it was used as the clearing house for artwork stolen by the Nazis. Interesting. 


© nabanitadhar.in
Any discussion about Paris is incomplete without the mention of the cruise on the Seine. It is, well, something else altogether. The bridges built on it with the imposing city structures on either banks, everything appears magical. And if you happen to be on a the cruise at night you realize why it is called the city of lights. My #MyASUSZenfone tells me there are 37 bridges within Paris on the Seine and dozens more over the river outside the city. And the ashes of Joan of Arc were actually scattered on this very river. Again, I didn't know.

If you have been to Paris, you’ll know how wonderful a walk around the city is. In fact, the best way of discovering this city is on foot, walking through it's streets, capturing it bit by bit. There’s something in the air there which makes everything special, everything artistic.

“Paris is the only city in the world where starving to death is still considered an art.” ― Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Of-course, nothing can quench this thirst of flying off to Paris at every available opportunity. But looks like this fact finding exercise through #MyASUSZenfone can be used to satiate this need to revisit Paris. Well, at-least it helped me calm the current pang of desire for it.

Guwahati: More Than Just Home


Longfellow wrote these beautiful lines 'stay, stay at home my heart and rest. Home keeping hearts are the happiest'.  I must say, I agree with him. It is also said that home is where the heart is. And that being true I have my home in at least three places in the world, one of them being at Guwahati. It was in the year 2008 that my parents moved there permanently. My association, however, with this fast growing city in the North East of India goes back further in time.

Living in Shillong as a child, Guwahati was my gangway to the rest of the world. Where ever we had to go, Guwahati, a mere 3 hours drive from Shillong, was the inevitable starting point. What do I say about this city I feel I know so well and yet have so much of it to discover?


© http://www.nabanitadhar.in/

As a child, I would often find myself in Guwahati, sometimes visiting relatives while at others for a trip to the Kamakhya Temple. For those who haven't been there, Guwahati is an amalgamation of the old and the new. It is a city where traditions and modernity coexist. Many might not know this but in spite of the apathy towards this part of the country, Guwahati is very progressive in it's thinking, well, mostly. Whether education, culture or sports, it is a thriving seat for all the three in the north eastern region. For me, Guwahati, which was once the city that connected Shillong to the rest of the world, is today the city where my parents live. Today, Guwahati is my hometown.

Situated on the banks of the Brahmaputra, the only river in this country with a male name, Guwahati is the corridor to the North East. One of my fondest memories of Guwahati is traveling there with my dad. I remember it began in the year when I was in the 8th standard and was suffering from Writer's Cramp. Every month dad would take me to a medical facility in Guwahati for treatment and checkup. It was the first of many journeys dad and I undertook together in the coming years, strangely all of those originating from, well, Guwahati.


http://www.nabanitadhar.in/

And those trips to the Kamakhya Temple, how can I forget those? Dad would often tell us stories about his trips to the temple when he was an Engineering Student in Guwahati. Situated at the top of a hill, there was a time when people used to climb hundreds of steps to reach the temple and still do. I, however, always found the trip by car more fascinating. The ancient temple has a charm that you can't deny, an aura difficult to describe. And the view of the Brahmaputra from the mountain top, well, breathtaking.

Of-course, my trips to Guwahati are now limited to one every year but even in that the familiarity is hard to replicate. It's not only about my parents being there but the people, food, landmarks, et al. I think the fact that it takes me back to my roots, bridges the gap between my present and my past, makes it even more special. 


© http://www.nabanitadhar.in/
Whether it is watching a movie at Donna Planet or sampling the yummy street food at G.S Road, Guwahati excites me. The Assam Silk sold there is the only fabric that attracts me to sarees. I can spend hours in Fancy Bazar looking for the perfect six yards of grace or buying books in Pan Bazar. The fresh produce dad picks up from Ganeshguri is unparalleled so far. And the atmosphere during Durga Pujas, just divine. Everything about Guwahati holds a special place in my heart, everything.

I somehow recognize myself better there, feel more closer to myself. Well, just writing about it makes me want to fly down there. If you get a chance, I think you should surely pay the city a visit. It's a city with the warmth of a small town. It doesn't get better than that!

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#KonaKonaKotak is reaching across the country, in small cities & towns like Guwahati, in yours & mine.