Page 1


THE TRUMPET BLOWERS EDITORIAL FIONA PATERSON KASHMIRA PATEL ART AVI GOEL KAMAINI MITTAL SPACE SELLING ​DASARATHI VARATHARAJAN JASDEEP SINGH PRAJNA PARAMITA DHALL SAMANT RAHUL SINGH ​SAAD ABDULLAH SRINIVAS MUDUMBA SOCIAL MEDIA

editor’s note

​BINDIYA FARSWANI PRIYA AGARWAL

Rights: All rights reserved. The writing, artwork and photography contained herein may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of The Indian Trumpet. The views expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of The Indian Trumpet. All efforts have been made while compiling the content of the magazine but we assume no responsibility for the effects arising there from. We take no responsibility of the availability of the products mentioned in the various sections of the magazine. Reprints as a whole or in part can be done only with written permission from The Indian Trumpet quoting “The Indian Trumpet magazine” for texts and pictorial material. Signed articles do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editor. No responsibility can be taken for the loss of unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or artwork. Contacts: Purva Grover, founder & editor theindiantrumpet.com All queries to be addressed to theindiantrumpet@gmail.com The Indian Trumpet Magazine is released six times a year. It is available to the readers absolutely free of cost on the portal theindiantrumpet.com.

4 theindiantrumpet.com

Chai is a sweet & sensitive subject for Indians; it’s not a beverage but an emotion. The sound of water boiling on the pan, the whiff of tea leaves filling up the room, the conversations that happen over a cup … cha or chai is a tradition with us. It’s a drink that runs in our ‘veins’. So when we prepped ourselves to make this chai special edition it was natural that we first put the kettle on and then brain stormed. During the course we learnt that everyone enjoyed their tea in a different way be it when it came to its preparation, type or accompaniments. For a few the tea spelt grandma’s love, for many it brought alive the memories of the college canteen, many shared how the cup made their mornings brighter, countless spoke of how they loved the teatime that they shared with their partners and everyone mentioned that cups of chai made spending hours at work less painful. We found ourselves connecting over the humble chai, irrespective of whether it was served in bone china cups & saucers, pragmatic Styrofoam cups, rustic kulhads or commonplace steel glasses. It was quite fascinating how instead of talking about rules, fonts and grids we spoke of tea bags, loose powder and tea leaves. Anyone for another cup, these words kept us going and we found ourselves meeting up with people who spoke excitedly about their ‘tea’tox routines or boasted their ‘tea’ totaller status. Also, on our way to many chai stalls we heard stories about men & women who came to India from foreign lands and fell in love with our chai! We got in touch with them and decided to bring to you their tales of romancing the Indian chai via photography, stories, documentaries, arts & more. Read up about their journeys inside. In the end, what did we learn? A lot! The different colours of tea from a cheerful green to a smiling pink; the art of dunking the biscuit into the tea and letting it soak in there and calculating the exact moment when it would dissolve; the charm of indulging in a cup at a refined & suave tearoom vs. a makeshift thella; and more. But our most important learning was the fact that the chai doesn’t discriminate; it stirs & wakes up one & all, alike. Isn’t that wonderful? So, get yourself a steaming cup of chai & sit back to flip through the aromas, flavours, memories and joys of chai. Till we meet next year, happy tooting

Purva founder & editor editor@theindiantrumpet.com


theindiantrumpet.com

.5

over a cup of chai


Hello! I read The Indian Trumpet (the issue on women). Every write up leaves you with a different dimension even when written on the same topic. Really liked that bit about the magazine! So many flavours…Kudos to the heart and soul put into it! Good wishes for the next issue! Ishana Luthra, India ............................................................... I was both touched and inspired after reading through the Jan-Feb 2014 edition of The Indian Trumpet. It made me realise that as an individual I could make a contribution towards the cause. I even made my 15-year-old son read a few pieces from the magazine. Lovely effort. Soumya Bharadwaj, California ............................................................... I have become a fan of the colours in the magazine. They just make the day brighter! I love flipping through the pages, and like the ‘Our Shabdkosh’ and ‘Indian Belly’ sections in particular; I even tried out a few recipes from the latter. Priyanka Singh Dubai ...............................................................

16500 +

likes on Facebook, facebook.com/TheIndianTrumpet

I am a huge cricket fan. I have always idolised Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar. I loved the tribute that The Indian Trumpet paid to him. It was a pleasure to read the heartfelt pieces. Also, the caricatures used in the piece were beautiful. Paresh Sharma, India ............................................................... I love the ‘Last Word’ section of the magazine. It would be lovely if you bring in more of fiction and poetry in the pages.

trumpet followers

Sonu Dutta Geneva

...............................................................

This is your space. We’d love to know what you have to say about the magazine. Drop a line at theindiantrumpet@gmail.com

6 theindiantrumpet.com

We consumed countless cups of chai while making The Indian Trumpet: Chai Special. We made stopovers at chai ki dukaans, savoured tea across the globe, fell in love with the kulhads once again, met chai lovers and a lot more.We also decided to give our portal (theindiantrumpet.com) a fresh look, we hope you like it! We decided to expand the Trumpet family, and added some lovely members to it. So, sit down with a cup of masala chai or adrak chai, or may be a chai latte and indulge in this steaming, special edition.


Remember! The most easiest thing to do is : CRITICIZE!

Suggestions , Ideas and

Criticism is most welcome!!!

Visit us on : www.facebook.com/Jackartoons or mail us : game4764@gmail.com

Powered by: Sanket Jack & Priyanka Asher


follow the noise 8 theindiantrumpet.com


theindiantrumpet.com

.9


follow the noise 10 theindiantrumpet.com


t n e r e f f i D trokes ath S by Manoj N

Art | Graphics | Illustrations

manojnath4u@gmail.com | +91 9341042598 | facebook.com/DSbyMN


70 mm 12 theindiantrumpet.com


ONE BOLLYWOOD

C HAI PLEASE!

CHAI HAS BEEN BREWED IN BOLLYWOOD ALL ALONG. FROM SHREE 420 IN 1955 TO RAANJHANAA IN 2013 IT’S BEEN STEAMING UP THE ROMANCE, STIMULATING DISCUSSIONS, PLAYING THE PROTAGONIST AND OVERTURNING PLOT LINES. HERE’S WHAT’S BEEN ON THE TEA TRAY SO FAR. words FARHANA AHMED

theindiantrumpet.com

.13


A rainy night, empty streets, an old chaiwallah waiting with his boiling kettle and glasses for his last customer. This was the background scene of the evergreen song ‘Pyar Hua Ikraar Hua” from the film Shree 420 (1955). Another song sequence is from the film Bandini (1963), “O Re Majhi, Mere Sajaan Hai Us Paar…” where the hero, Ashok Kumar and the heroine, Nutan wait in separate corners of a room, while watching the chaiwallah in the Good Luck Tea Stall soulfully singing the song. These chai sequences are somehow a very important and necessary part of Bollywood movies. They are used as an expressive tool of emotions. Sometimes tea scenes are used in lighter moods like in evening parties, gossip addas of friends and campus canteens. Elsewhere chai scenes are applied to charge up minds and situations, for instance, in police stations, chai helps cops to think clearly and speed up investigations. Hindi films sometimes use chai to present creative situations, at other times as fillers in tense moments. It is also an important arrangement or the first step to initiate a new relationship or intimacy —“Shayad meri shaadi ka khayal dil main aaya hai isi liye mummy ne meri tumhe chai pe bulaya hai...” in Souten (1983). Most movies where the potential bride and groom are to meet have a scene of the bride stumbling out of the kitchen with rattling cups of tea for the guests. In spite of how important tea is, perhaps the only song picturised exclusively on tea is “Aahen Na Bhar Thandi Thandi Garam Garam Chai Pile” in Banphool (1971) in which Babita sells tea with a kettle and cups in her hands.

70 mm

Like tea, tea-vendors or chaiwallahs are also an important and integral part of the movies. They are shown in offices, railway stations, and dhabas, plying their trade and coaxing people from their busy schedules for a cup of tea. Some films depict a vendor at a spot where the plot evolves. Some films have a tea vendor, a spot where the plot evolves. In Tezaab (1988), a group of college boys led by Johnny Lever enjoy free tea prepared by Guldasta (played by Annu Kapoor) by praising his singing abilities. In Gangaajal (2003), a suspended cop sells tea with his two school drop-out sons and offers a glass of tea to the SP (Ajay Devgan). To make street scenes more authentic and realistic, film makers mix in the sound of tea cups or glasses in conversations along with the din of traffic and Hindi film songs played on radio. Though tea is shown as a part of daily life in Bollywood as in Sharmilee (1971) where Shashi Kapoor offers tea to all his guests on a snowy, winter night in the song “Khilte hain gul yahaan”, there has not been any clear reflection of this as a subject. In Hrishikesh Mukherjee directed and Amitabh-Rakhee-Vinod Mehra starred Bemisal (1982), the trio was once shown enjoying tea with Krackjack biscuits in an open air sitting amidst the picturesque landscape of Kashmir. In many soft yet poignant tales of Hrishikesh Mukherjee movies too, there are lot of tea sessions representing the warmth of relationship, friendship and family occasions like birthday, marriage anniversary and outdoor picnics. Chai references are found in quite

14 theindiantrumpet.com

Bandini saw Ashok Kumar & Nutan watch a chaiwallah in the Good Luck Tea Stall soulfully singing the song... O Re Majhi, Mere Sajaan Hai Us Paar...


Recently, Raanjhanaa saw Dhanush serving tea to a bunch of young political activists… a few songs such as “Yeh chai apun ki jaan hai bhai” in Rakshak: The Protector (2001), a Telegu movie dubbed into Hindi, “Ek garam chai ki pyali ho” in Har Dil Jo Pyar Karega (2000) and “Aslam Bhai…Dubai ki Chasma, Chin ki chaddi aur Irani Chai” in Love Ke Liye Kuch Bhi Karega (2001). The song “Na aaye ho, na aaoge, na shaam ki karaari chai labon se yun pilaoge……” in Dum Maro Dum (2011) reminds one, once again of the charm and effect of the evening tea on our body and soul. In Kahaani (2012) glasses of chai bought from street chaiwallahs are offered to Vidya Bagchi (Vidya Balan) and the cop Rana (Parambrata Chatterjee) with a 1970s melody from the movie Ghar played on radio. More recently in Raanjhanaa (2013), the male protagonist, Kundan, played by Kolavari D famous Dhanush serves tea to the political activists in Delhi while they prepare for political and social exercises against the establishment. Bollywood has also presented tea being enjoyed in different ways and styles in different movies. From being served in exotic tea-sets with golden-silver spoons to the maharajas, zamindars and men of high khandans, it is also served in metal bowls to the rustic holding it with their dangling cloths to avoid the heat of the garam chai. In Deewar (1976), Vijay (Amitabh Bachchan) cools his hot tea by pouring it into the saucer. Throughout the 1970s and ‘80s Bollywood

heroes would accept only tea to prove their teetotalism. On the other hand it was the villains or anti-heroes, except Keshto Mukherjee, who savoured hard drinks in movies of that period. A recent example, directed by Flavin Luicien, the movie Cutting Chai (2011) is not really about tea, but it is treated as the supporting actor. Here tea is the background, the integral part of daily life, the link among a group of strugglers in Mumbai. Another recent film about tea is Geetanjali Rao’s short film Chai (2013). Here, chai is presented as a source of income — how people in big cities earn their living by selling tea at different places. Many migrants to the city from smaller towns choose to sell tea to make ends meet. Geetanjali’s film features different tea vendors ranging from a 10-year-old boy to an octogenarian, and portrays how tea has helped them escape some dire situations and make their future a bit brighter. And of course, tea is as important, if not more, offscreen, as it is on-screen. It is an essential ingredient that invigorates the entire unit, from set designers to spot boys, from directors to stuntmen, folks in front of as well as behind the camera. From writing the screenplay to post production — tea is always moving on a tray in every set of Bollywood. This is the cutting chai of Bollywood.

.15

theindiantrumpet.com

Farhana Ahmed is a crazy nature lover! She’s passionate about blue skies, wild ducks, finches, rivers, reeds and orchids. Celluloid is in her blood and the silver screen in her eyes. An eternal Dev Anand fan, she loves to write about cinema, with two published books to her name. She’s also a fashionable interior designer who hates politics. Right now she’s working as a journalist for a prestigious Assam daily.


indian belly 16 theindiantrumpet.com


TEA

TIME SNACKS DUNKING BISCUITS, TAKING GIANT BITES OF SAMOSAS, GORGING ON A HANDFUL OF NAMKEEN, ENJOYING A PIECE OF CAKE, SHARING AN ALU TIKKI… HOW DO YOU LIKE YOUR TEA? PAIRING THE HUMBLE CHAI WITH SNACKS IS QUITE AN ART, SAY THE TEAHOLICS. LET’S DRESS UP TEA TIME WITH SOME OF OUR FAVOURITE SNACKS. words PRACHI GROVER

theindiantrumpet.com

.17


indian belly

Ask most Indians and they’d agree that there’s something about the garma garam chai that makes chilly winter mornings warmer and sultry summer evenings tolerable. On weekends, there is no rush you can hold a cup in your hands and absorb the beauty of the sunrise. On weekdays, when you’re running around like a headless chicken the same cup of chai (or cha as my maternal grandmother would say) when multiplied by three or sometimes four helps keep your sanity intact. In short, a cup of chai simply makes one’s life better. As for me, I’ve always been more fascinated with what comes along with the chai than the chai itself. Think conversations, people, favourite chai spots and snacks; yes, especially the snacks. As a child, I loved to cup my hands around my mum’s hot mug of tea and dip a Parle-G or rusk in it; this would inadvertently break into the cuppa and she’d give me that “I told you so” look. But we were never allowed to drink tea: “kids don’t do that” she’d say. We’d wait eagerly for the day of transition between soggy biscuits and our first cups of magical masala chai. Till then, my sister and I made do with tea parties of our own in a toy kitchen. At this point I need to point out that your editor (aka my sister) liked

18 theindiantrumpet.com

her soggy Nice biscuits, the ones with sugar crystals, more than the ones with fluorescent synthetic cream between them. I mean, who in the world doesn’t enjoy pulling apart the two halves, licking the cream and then dipping the ‘nibbled samples’ in mommy’s cup of tea? As I grew up, I fell for coffee rather than tea (blasphemy, I know for a north Indian), but the taste of what was served with the tea never left me, in fact it just piqued my interest more with every tea party. Hot pakoras straight out of the kadhai, samosas from the neighbourhood Sharma ji ki dukaan, steaming hot jalebis on a rainy afternoon, bhujjias for those still evenings (those that mom kept in her Tupperware dabba lest they lost their crunch), a packet of Bikanerwala kaju namkeen opened hurriedly when guests suddenly arrived and the regular tea partners that kept changing depending on mum’s mood; glucose biscuits, rusks or a Marie. At weekends, mum would bake us a cake in her round oven and we’d eat it the moment it emerged, while she’d have it sipping her adrak wali chai. Tea pairings may have just started doing the rounds in the culinary world today but ask any Indian and they’d fill you up with sound bites of a tea snack for every occasion and reason. Ginger, green cardamom, black cardamom,


the chai buddies Our favourite teatime snacks*

Know them better

Allu tikkis

Deep fried potato cakes, served with a spicy coriander and mint chutney.

Banana chips

Deep fried or dried slices of bananas enjoyed as chips.

Bhajjis

Vegetable pieces rolled into balls, usually fried in gram flour batter.

Bhujjias

Crispy yellow deep fried snacks made with gram flour and spices: chilli, pepper, cardamom, cloves and salt.

Biscuits (also known as biscoot)

The likes of Parle-G, Nice, Marie, Bourbon etc. All Indian kids grow up with these.

Farsaan

Collective term for snacks like dhokla, kachori, khaman, khandvi, muthia, etc.

Kachori

Patties stuffed with spiced lentils, potatoes or beans, enjoyed with a variety of sweet and sour chutneys.

Mathri

Flaky biscuits made from flour, water and cumin seeds.

Mixture

Fried lentils/onions, peanuts, chickpea noodles, flaked rice etc.; combinations depend on state of origin.

Murukku

Crunchy twists made from rice and urad dal flour.

Pakoras/ Bondas

Vegetable/s or minced meat, coated in batter (usually gram flour) and deep-fried.

Rusks

Dry biscuit breads, baked twice.

Samosas

Fried triangular spicy, savoury pastries usually containing boiled potatoes and peas or minced meat.

Shakarpare/ Namakpare

Crispy square or diamond shapes made with all-purpose flour. Sugar coated/savoury.

*There are just few of the Indian snacks that are enjoyed with tea.

cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and sometimes even saffron, occasionally added individually, mostly in various permutations, all brought together to blend with the mood of the day, the need of the hour and of course the flavour of the accompanying snack.

I’m sure you have a memory that revolves around chai, one that pepped your daily routine. Even though I now have a home office, there’s one work practice I still follow: meeting up with my girlfriends for a monthly tea date. All of us send our kids to school and then meet over a cup of tea (coffee for me) and adult conversation. Every time, I make a promise to the tea leaves: one day I’ll give you my heart! But till then, I’ll indulge in your companions. One plate of steaming bread pakora with tomato ketchup, please!

.19

theindiantrumpet.com

I’ll digress a little here and travel back to re-visit some of my favourite memories revolving around a cup of chai. Once I began college, some of the best experiences circled around the tapri, as my hostel mates from Mumbai would call the chai stall. In between classes, during evenings when the mess would be shut or late at night when innumerable projects kept us awake, we’d be there. Laughing, talking and cribbing over those little glasses of chai with packets of biscuits or packaged dhokla bought from the very same tapri or when we really got lucky some homemade mathri couriered by a loving parent. Tea time was sacred; it was here we shared both our excitement and fears of an unknown future that awaited us after college. Jobs brought financial independence, responsibility and, of course, bosses: they all strengthened our bond with chai time. My first job was with a company that housed its factory and office in the same premises, which

meant fixed tea breaks. You couldn’t just walk out of your cubicle and order tea; you had to wait for it to arrive. With the little steel cups came the mammoth in-house tea-vending dispenser, complete with tap. We would queue up to fill our two drops of chai and to accompany that came out the packets of murruku, savoury crunchy twists made from rice and urad dal flour that were duly distributed along with our lunch plates. Over those crispy round spirals, we shared our corporate miseries. Each Friday, the murruku was replaced with cake with multi-colour glazed cherries. Life was good. There was a certain comfort in following the routine that the regular cup of chai brought with it.


A traditional Indian snack POTATO BHAJJIS WITH HARI CHUTNEY (SERVES 4-6) Recipe and image: orangekitchens.blogspot.ae Ingredients

Instructions:

For the Hari Chutney • 125 grams coriander, stems removed and chopped • 3-4 green chillis, chopped • 1 medium onion, chopped • 2 gooseberries, chopped • Juice of a lemon • ½ tsp rock salt (optional) • 1 tsp cumin powder • Salt to taste

For the Hari Chutney: 1. Simply blend together all the ingredients for the chutney.

For the Potato Bhajjis • 500 grams potatoes, sliced and immersed in ice cold water • 150 grams chickpea flour • ½ cup coriander, chopped • 1 tsp cornflour • ½ tsp chilli powder • 1 tsp salt • ½ tsp ajwain • 1 tsp turmeric powder • 150 ml water • Sunflower oil to deep fry • Chaat masala to sprinkle

For the Bhajjis: 1. Mix all the ingredients except the potatoes into a thick batter. 2. Drain the water from the sliced potatoes and immediately put it in the batter. See that all the pieces are coated evenly. 3. In the meantime heat the oil in a wok. Test if the oil is hot enough by dropping a drop or two of the batter. If it sizzles it is ready to fry. 4. Take four-five batter coated potato slices and carefully drop it into the hot oil. When it becomes golden yellow take it out on a paper towel to absorb the extra oil. 5. Do the same with all the other slices and sprinkle chaat masala on it if you like. 6. Serve with the Hari chutney and enjoy.

A snack inspired by British tea time culture GLAZED RUM CAKE (SERVES 10) Recipe and image: orangekitchens.blogspot.ae

indian belly

Ingredients • 1 cup unsalted butter • 2 cups sugar • 4 eggs • 3 cups all purpose flour • 1 tsp baking powder • 1/2 tsp baking soda • 1/8 tsp salt • 1 cup milk • 1 tsp vanilla extract • 3/4 cup rum • 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts if you like For the rum glaze • 4 tbsp unsalted butter • 1 cup sugar • 1/2 cup dark rum For finishing • 3 tbsp caster sugar Instructions: 1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Grease and flour a 9 inch bundt pan. 2. In a mixing bowl, mix cream

20 theindiantrumpet.com

butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. 3. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, combine milk, vanilla and rum. 4. Beat flour mixture and milk mixture into the butter in three alternating additions. If using walnuts, then add now. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake for an hour or until golden brown. For the glaze: 1. Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in sugar and 1/4 cup water and bring to a boil; cook for 5 minutes stirring constantly. 2. Remove from heat and stir in rum. Pour the glaze over your cake Dust with the sugar.

Prachi Grover is a food maniac (read: food blogger & consultant). On days that she is not able to cook a lavish & large enough meal to feed friends and families she suffers from a migraine. Her other obsession is design. Her home turns a new leaf every few days making you want to re-visit her for inspiration. She can be found at orangekitchens.blogspot.com and purplehomes.blogspot.com.


trumpet contest

OVER MANY CUPS OF CHAI WE ASKED OUR READERS TO SHARE THEIR FAVOURITE CHAI MOMENTS WITH US. TOO MANY LOVELY PICTURES REACHED OUR INBOX. THE FACEBOOK JUNTA SHOWERED MAXIMUM LOVE FOR THE CLICK BY AMRITA TRIPATHY. CONGRATS, AMRITA YOUR TEA BOX FROM BELIIS IS ON ITS WAY.

Bubbles of joy in a cup: Of road side tea and a story behind it. Amrita Tripathy shot this image under the theme Capturing Moments at Chitra Santhe – 11th Bangalore Art Festival. 2014.

theindiantrumpet.com

.21


trumpet lead

ON A

22 theindiantrumpet.com


PATRICK SHAW & JENNY KOSTECKI-SHAW LOVE CHAI & INDIA. ONE MORNING WHILE SIPPING CHAI, THEY HAD THIS CRAZY IDEA TO FLY TO THEIR ADOPTED MOTHERLAND, INDIA AND SPEND FOUR MONTHS STEEPING THEMSELVES IN CHAI CULTURE. THE RESULT WAS A BEAUTIFUL, RICH & ILLUSTRATED BOOK, CHAI PILGRIMAGE: A SOUL-NOURISHING TEA ADVENTURE THROUGH NORTHERN INDIA. words JOANNA OOMMEN (Facing page) Cover, Chai Pilgrimage: A Soul-Nourishing Tea Adventure Through Northern India. (Above) Ginger icon from the book. (Below) Jenny Kostecki-Shaw & Patrick Shaw.

Like many Indians, I too was introduced early to the chai culture, first as a dispassionate spectator to teadrinking parents and guests, and later, as my taste evolved beyond Bournvita and Rasna, as an avid consumer of the beverage myself. My favourite blend of tea was and remains my mother’s Elaichi spiced concoction, whose perfection I’ve been unable to recreate (mother’s touch perhaps?).

But this essay is not merely about celebrating chai culture. Instead, I’ll be

.23

theindiantrumpet.com

A steaming cup of chai, accompanied by a plate of hot samosas or pakoras, is one of the few things that fires up the ‘Indian’ in us. We may dress differently, be more relaxed in certain dialects, enjoy rice, roti, or both, depending on our origins, but if we were to

choose one beverage that defines India like no other, chai would be the unequivocal favourite. Long before India’s urban youth latched on to the western practice of consuming coffee spurted into takeaway cups that grew taller by the decade, hand-brewed chai served by the road-side chaiwallah in humble glass or clay cups had become the mainstay of office-goers taking a break or catching up with friends after work. Needless to say, chai culture still permeates Indian homes in a classic portrayal of Indian hospitality and timeless tradition.


sharing the inspiring story of the American couple Patrick Shaw and Jenny Kostecki-Shaw, whose love for masala chai and India first brought them to the country in 1999. They spent four months in 2006 “steeping in chai culture” and the spiritual traditions, music, food, and art of the country, which they refer to as their adopted motherland. Patrick, an Ayurveda practitioner, teaches Ayurveda and Ayurvedic cooking at the University of New Mexico. Jenny is a mother, homesteader and illustrator of children’s books. Having visited India many times, they chronicled discoveries and adventures in Chai Pilgrimage: A SoulNourishing Tea Adventure Through Northern India, their recently-published travel journal, which is available through chaipilgrimage.com and amazon.com. Excerpts from my interaction with Patrick Shaw.

trumpet lead

Was it your interest in Ayurveda that led to you discovering your passion for tea? My Ayurvedic studies indirectly introduced me to masala chai. Through Ayurveda, I discovered India’s spiritual traditions and rich culture. Many aspects of Indian culture, the food, art and music, got woven into my life. I soon embarked on studying Indian music and my tabla teacher served me my first cup of homebrewed masala chai. The rest is history. How would you describe India’s obsession with chai? Is it a reflection of your own fascination with the beverage? I feel India’s obsession with chai, and my own, is rooted in the timeless tradition of stopping for a moment to connect with one another. When we sip a sweet, warming cup of chai, we relax and let our guard down - creating a space for sincere conversation. I think this is a big reason why people gather at chai dukans and drink chai in the home - to be at ease with one another. Then, of course, after chai time, we are energised and ready to get to work! Have you been to tea-growing regions other than India? What is your take on the tea-drinking culture in these countries?

24 theindiantrumpet.com

(Clockwise) A chaiwallah icon from the book. The Big Batch House Chai recipe. A Darjeeling Ginger Chai recipe. A cardamom icon from the book.


.25

theindiantrumpet.com

How does Indian chai compare to other forms of tea? We have only visited tea-growing regions in India. Because of our love for Indian culture, any further tea explorations would most likely be in India. I cannot imagine any other tea experience that can compare to sitting on a dusty, tea-stained wooden plank held up by two tin sesame oil cans and sipping boiled CTC tea with buffalo milk from a wonderful chaiwallah. CTC, an acronym for Crush, Tear, Curl, refers to the most common processing technique for tea leaves among Indian tea manufacturers, and yields the pelletised tea leaves widely available in Indian markets.


Tell us more about your trip(s) to India. It is not uncommon for first time visitors from a different continent to be overwhelmed by the vastness of India’s geography, its cultural and spiritual traditions, not to mention the challenges of adapting to an unfamiliar lifestyle. How would you describe your sojourn? From the first moment I arrived in India, I felt like I was home. In all honesty, I feel like I have lived here before – perhaps many times. I came to India straight from living at a Hindu ashram in America where we had numerous Indian visitors, so I was accustomed to many of the traditions. That being said, being surrounded by a billion people in a place where every facet of human existence is exposed, was extremely humbling. Each moment in India was a practice in cultivating compassion. One cannot ignore the difficult aspects of India’s reality without closing off ones heart. Instead, India broke open our hearts. We laughed, cried and prayed to the full each day.

trumpet lead

One fond memory that has always moved me was arriving at railway station on a second-class sleeper train as people were bustling on and off the train. A woman with a baby boarded the train, made eye contact with me for a second, then handed her baby to me without speaking a word and walked off the train. After five minutes she returned with her luggage. It is rare to experience this level of human trust in America. You refer to India as your adopted motherland. This clearly arises from more than sharing ‘chai culture’. Tell us more about how this love came about and your impressions of India: its people, culture, spirituality and diversity. Indian culture is thoroughly steeped in spiritual tradition. This is the beauty of India! Everywhere you go, you hear the call to prayer from mosques, walk past street-side mandirs and see people dressed in religious garb. This constant reminder of the divine presence is why we love India. This presence permeates through the culture and through the people. We miss many of India’s customs - greeting one another with Namaste or Salaam Alaikum, removing shoes at the door, being offered a fresh cup of chai - when we return to America.

26 theindiantrumpet.com

What inspired you and Jenny to create ‘Chai Pilgrimage’? What is the message you would like to convey? One of our greatest pleasures in India is hanging out at chai stalls and talking with people. We realised that street-side stands were the central meeting places for India’s diverse walks of life. We wanted to take this street-level cultural experience and combine it with our backgrounds in Ayurveda, Eastern spirituality, chaimaking and photography, and create an evocative visual journey, packed with stories and recipes that people would treasure. So our target audience is masala chai drinkers, curious travellers as well as anyone who holds India in their heart. Our underlying vision was to portray the unique and divine nature of each person we met regardless of his or her socio-economic status. To us, the beloved chaiwallah is the welcoming face of India who embodies the Vedic tradition of Atitihi Devo Bhava, or treating the guest as god no matter who they are. Everyone is remarkable and worthy of being honoured. This realisation was the greatest boon of our pilgrimage and one we would like to


(Left) Traditional clay cups. (Below, top to bottom) Jai Ram, a chaiwallah who the duo met on their journey. The charm of ‘grandma’ chai. In Benaras, they learnt more about clay cups.

share. As we completed the interview, I couldn’t resist asking Patrick, a seasoned chaiwallah, the secret to making a delicious and healthy cup of tea. Besides using fresh ground spices, (and there is a cornucopia of spices to play around with: ginger, cardamom, fennel, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, saffron, vanilla beans, even pepper), Patrick shares something he learned from his ‘chai guru’: prepare chai ‘with prayer or loving intentions so that whoever sips it receives a blessing’. I realise I might after all have cracked the secret behind my mother’s elaichi-wali chai!

To know more, chaipilgrimage.com.

.27

theindiantrumpet.com

Joanna Oommen has an eye for detail and a passion for all things creative. An engineer by qualification and a writer by choice, she worked as a technology writer in India’s Millennium city, Gurgaon, before moving to Dubai. She’s also contributed to the IEEE and Arabian Gazette. Most of all, she enjoys getting her views across, and sharing the stories behind her impromptu jaunts. When not buried in a book, she loves crafts, cooking, catching a movie or strolling with her partner, gazing at Dubai’s skyline. Find her at mehmianddubai.wordpress.com


THE MUSHROOMING OF COFFEE SHOPS ALL OVER THE COUNTRY MIGHT LEAD YOU TO BELIEVE THAT COFFEE IS THE NEW TEA. THE TRUTH IS COFFEE SHOPS TOO ARE INNOVATING AND SERVING THE GOOD OL’ CHAI, IN ITS OLD & NEW AVATARS! YES, OUR ‘NATIONAL’ DRINK IS EVOLVING WITH TIME; CROSSING BOUNDARIES AND BLENDING WITH UNKNOWN FLAVOURS TO REACH & SATIATE THE NEW TEA LOVERS.

trumpet lead

words SURBHI THUKRAL

where is my

cup of chai?

28 theindiantrumpet.com


theindiantrumpet.com

.29


trumpet lead

“Where is my cup of chai?” Daily, at the much-awaited tea time, these words resonate all across India. Almost everyone who has lived in India is familiar with the rituals of chai: the clink of glasses and conversation over the newspaper; the clamorous calls of chaiwallah bhaiyas (tea vendors) at markets and railway stations; the scheduled workplace break that allows moments of tranquillity; the conference rooms where cups are consumed over decision making; and more. Energising chai functions as an alarm clock in many households. Shop owners humbly offer it to enhance the purchasing process. Visit any house and you’ll be cordially welcomed with a soothing cup. A college canteen is incomplete without tea glasses. In short, chai unites India. Originally a spiced, black tea with milk, sugar and water, the chai is today available in countless variations and, to the surprise of many, has acquired a vast following outside its traditional home. How did this revered drink start out? The origin of chai dates back around 5,000 years. Some stories suggest that it was invented by a king who aspired to create a healing beverage. From then on, it was used as a revitalising remedy by Ayurvedic practitioners. Its predecessor, masala chai, contained a range of spices - but no tea leaves - and was taken both hot and cold. It was only when the British set up tea plantations in Assam, India (to break the Chinese monopoly) that tea leaves were added, laying the foundations of the masala chai as we know it now. Its popularity was restricted to India until the early twentieth century when the Britishowned Indian Tea Association led a major promotional campaign encouraging the practice of tea breaks in factories. What are the health benefits of chai? The choice of ingredients and preparation of chai determines its efficacy. Usually, the recipe involves black or green tea,

30 theindiantrumpet.com

various spices, sugar, milk and water. Black tea has amazing antioxidant capabilities that can lower both blood pressure and cholesterol. It’s said to reduce cancer risk, delay the onset of Alzheimer’s and slow down the ageing process. Green tea can enhance the metabolism, potentially aiding weight loss. It may also improve brain function and lower cancer risk. The effects of the spices used in chai have been observed for many years. Cardamom can elevate mood and improve health of the lungs, kidney and heart. Cinnamon helps to boost energy, augment circulation and facilitate breathing. Ginger is an antiinflammatory that assists in strengthening the immune system. Cloves are energising and can restore heat in the body. Mint adds a calming dimension. Yes, the classic ingredients of chai combine in your cup to create powerful effects. How does chai vary around India? Regional, local and household preferences determine the various styles of chai. In Kashmir, gunpowder green tea is used instead of black tea (though both black and green tea are derived from the same plant, Camellia Sinesis). Moreover, saffron, roses and almonds are added. In Assam, a pinch of salt is mixed in. And the future for chai? Bubble tea from Taiwan - fruity or milky, with chewy tapioca pearls - recently made its debut in Bengaluru. But as Gaurav Saria, managing director, Infinitea says, “In India, Masala Chai is the undisputed leader. Green tea is making more of an impact outside India thanks to promotion from wellness and health perspectives.” Nevertheless, chai has proliferated around the world, with cafes and restaurants creating their own unique versions. Chai Latte - spiced tea mixed with hot milk from espresso machines - is commonplace now. In the US, chai is being served chilled - Spiced Iced Tea - with and without milk. Recent arrival, Dirty Chai is masala


flavoured. As vanilla and chocolate are creeping into some recipes, many renowned coffee houses are offering Chai Muffins or Pound Cakes made using liquid chai concentrate. Chirag Yadav, founder and director of Chaipatty Teafe says, “New versions emerged as more age groups started drinking tea, primarily iced or black, usually without milk. Tea is the new coffee so the logical

progression was the Latte way. Chai has many formats that are becoming increasingly accepted. As for India, even if the world comes up with its own version of tea, we will always be known for our ginger, cardamom and masala chai.” As chai surges in popularity, there’s much to be gained from promoting the benefits of the spices used in the national drink, and creating healthy versions with mass appeal. Here’s to giving the world more life-enhancing cups of chai.

.31

theindiantrumpet.com

Surbhi Thukral is a marketing professional turned writer. She has worked with corporations in India and the UK. After gaining success in business writing, she is determined to make a mark in the field of fiction writing. She has become a compulsive writer who dedicates many hours a day to fulfil her passion for creative writing. She holds a Masters in Business & Management from the University of Strathclyde, UK.


trumpet lead

words & artwork RITU DUA

1 masala chai 32 theindiantrumpet.com

WHAT’S LIFE WITHOUT A SPRINKLE? EVERYONE SPICE AND THAT’S WHY THE WORLD’S FALLEN MASALA CHAI. WHAT’S THE BEST RECIPE FOR T THE DIY. AND HOW A CHAI A DAY KEEPS THE D


morning tea A DAY THAT STARTS WITH A CUP OF CHAI IS A DAY WELL STARTED. A STEAMING CUP OF CHAI MAKES EVERY MORNING A GOOD MORNING.

.33

theindiantrumpet.com

E LIKES A LITTLE SUGAR AND N IN LOVE WITH OUR OWN THIS MAGIC POTION? HERE’S DOCTOR AWAY.

2


3

meri waali chai KESAR WAALI CHAI, RAILWAY STATION KI CHAI, CHAI MALAAI MAAR KE, TULSI WAALI CHAI, HYDERABAD KI SULAMANI CHAI, CUTTING CHAI, STEEL KE GILAAS MEI CHAI, KULHAD WAALI CHAI, KERALA STYLE METER CHAI... SPOILT FOR CHAI...ERR...CHOICE!

trumpet lead

4 chai

34 theindiantrumpet.com

partner BAHUT YAARAANA HAI CHAI KA AUR IN SABKA... FROM BISCUITS TO BREAD PAKODA AND SAMOSA TO MAGGI, NEWSPAPER TO MUSIC AND TOAST TO BAARISH...WE ALL HAVE OUR FAVOURITE CHAI PARTNERS!


5

tea thought EACH CUP OF TEA REPRESENTS AN IMAGINARY VOYAGE...

theindiantrumpet.com

.35


6 ‘tea’totaller

trumpet lead

WE’VE LOVED THESE! ARE YOU A ‘TEA’ TOTALLER? CAN YOU RECALL THE NAME OF THE CHAI BRAND YOUR GRANNY HAD? WHAT’S YOUR MOST LOVED LABEL? OR DO YOU PREFER ANY LABEL, AS LONG AS THE CHAI IS MADE AND SERVED WITH LOVE?

Ritu Dua has been a banker and teacher; now she’s drawn to what she loves to do the most: drawing and painting. Self-taught, she paints the way a bird sings, creates her own rainbows and intends to spread happiness through her art. Her forte is mixed media: micron pens, watercolours and oils, as well as recycled items. Besides her charity exhibitions, she’s worked with an NGO in India, shown under-privileged children how to create art from trash, and volunteered at Al Noor school in Dubai, teaching art to special children. Outside art, she celebrates all things delicious. She pours her heart out at beneathmyheartart.blogspot.

36 theindiantrumpet.com


Page 37 “Velikolepno!” Boris Ivanov cried, rubbing his hands with gleeful anticipation. “I cannot get enough of this Indian tea.” “Think about it, none of us would be here, had it not been for Assam tea,” said Dadamoshai. “What do you mean,” Manik asked. “What does Assam tea have to do with anything we are talking about?” “Ah! You know it was tea that put Assam on the world map, don’t you?” said Dadamoshai, stirring his cup. “It’s quite a remarkable story.”

TEATIME FOR THE FIREFLY

Page 178 How can I ever forget my first sight of a tea plantation? It came upon me like a breathless surprise. The tangled beauty of the Assam countryside parted to reveal waves upon waves of undulating green. So pristine, so serenely beautiful my senses were shaken. Tea gardens stretched finger to finger across the bounteous plains of Assam. Quaint names sprang up on billboards like musical chimes, mysterious and evocative Bogapani (White Water) Hatigarh (Elephant House), Kothalgoori (Jackfruit Root) Rangamati (Red Earth). Some tea gardens looked spruced and prosperous, others a little derelict.“Such curious names,” I said, mouthing them softly. “Tea garden names are enigmatic,” Manik agreed. “They sound vague and random but they have some grounding in the local geography or history of the place. They are very similar to English village names, that way.” He laughed. “There’s a tea garden called Bandookmara which means ‘shot by the gun,’ and the one next to Aynakhal is Negriting—‘slave girl hill.’ Who knows how those names originated? I am sure there are interesting stories behind them.”

To find out more about the book and its author, go to facebook.com/TeatimeFirefly ​The book is available from major online retailers including Amazon and FlipKart.

Copyright©2013 by Shona Patel Cover art use and permission to reproduce text granted by Harlequin Books S.A

.37

theindiantrumpet.com

​ N OUR DESK THIS ISSUE WAS THE O CHARMING TALE OF LAYLA ROY AND MANIK DEB, PENNED BY SHONA PATEL. THIS ENGAGING HISTORICAL NOVEL KEPT US OCCUPIED OVER MANY CUPS OF CHAI. HERE ARE EXCERPTS FROM ‘TEATIME FOR THE FIREFLY’. MAKE SPACE ON YOUR SHELVES FOR THIS TEA TREASURE.

Page 82 I stopped my reading to think. People in India drank a lot of tea, too. It seemed pretty ordinary stuff. So where did our tea come from? Here we were right in the middle of Assam, so surely it was Assam tea? I got up from the sofa and went to the kitchen. I took down the container of loose tea and poked around the contents with my finger. It looked like fine granules, almost a powder. It smelled like tea. Nothing exceptional. I decided to make myself a cup. I filled the kettle with water and put it on the stove. I leaned against the counter to continue reading in the dim light of the kitchen as I waited for the water to boil. The next section was an eye-opener. Little wonder why we poor Indians never got a whiff of quality Assam tea. All the fine tea grown in the plantations, one hundred percent, was shipped overseas. What was sold in the Indian market was the lowest grade, or what was commonly known as tea dust. I closed the book, marking my page with a teaspoon. As I poured the tea through a strainer, I noticed it had a nice strong color and good aroma, but my newfound knowledge now told me I was drinking bottom-of-the barrel quality. I would never have known that.

trumpet read

(L) Book cover, Teatime for the Firefly. (Below) Shona Patel, the author of the book.


the chronicles of an indian WHEREVER YOU GO IN INDIA THERE IS CHAI AND BEHIND EVERY CHAI, A CHAIWALLAH AND BEHIND EVERY CHAIWALLAH, A STORY. DOCUMENTING MANY SUCH TEA TALES IS THE AMERICAN DUO, ZACH MARKS AND RESHAM GELLATLY. HERE’S A PAGE FROM THEIR JOURNEY OF BACKPACKING ACROSS INDIA TO MEET THE CHAIWALLAHS.

trumpet lead

words PRACHI GOYAL images CHAIWALLAHSOFINDIA.COM

38 theindiantrumpet.com

The sight of young students sitting on weather beaten wooden benches in crazy abandon at the corner chai shack, the nimble chaiwallah at a railway station calling attention to his adrak and masala chai in a punctuation free drone, while doling it out in small styrofoam cups or sometimes earthen kulhads, all tell us how integrally woven chai and

chaiwallahs are in the fabric of India. A road trip is never complete for any Indian worth his salt without stopping by at a roadside chaiwallah for a refreshing cup of ginger or cardamom tea. And for most Indians, the day just does not begin, or even wind down without a cup of tea brewed just as they like it. And it is this charming chai culture of India that


Resham and Zach realised that chai was a potent factor unifying the hugely diverse and stratified India, reinforced by the chaiwallahs on every other street corner

intrigued Zach Marks and Resham Gellatly (and so much so!) that they felt compelled to make chai and the ubiquitous, yet unsung chaiwallah the subject of their research. Right now they are backpacking across India, travelling extensively in their bid to document stories of chaiwallahs throughout the country. Their findings will eventually translate into a book on Indian chaiwallahs. A documentary on the same subject could also be on the cards. The American duo met when they were in New Delhi for a year (2010-11)

on Fulbright-Nehru Fellowships while teaching in schools for underprivileged children. “We travelled a lot during that time,” says Marks, “Everywhere we went there was obviously chai and behind every cup was a chaiwallah, and if you probed further, a story.” During their stay they realised that chai was a potent factor unifying the hugely diverse and stratified India, reinforced by the chaiwallahs on every other street corner. As they voice very aptly on their website, chaiwallahsofindia.com: “The same way that New

theindiantrumpet.com

.39


The same way that New York cab drivers might be able to tell the story of the city with their interaction with customers, chaiwallahs can tell the story of India in all its complexity.

trumpet lead

York cab drivers might be able to tell the story of the city with their interaction with customers, chaiwallahs can tell the story of India in all its complexity.” They returned to the US at the end of their fellowship, but the chai bug had already bitten them. After extensive planning, they took a sabbatical and returned to India in September 2013 to start work on their project. “Everywhere we went our chai experiences were unique,” says Gellatly, who is of Indian origin and has grown up drinking masala tea made by her mother. We connected with them recently in Mumbai and chatted about their interesting chai experiences in the various states they visited so far. They talk about the camel milk tea that they had in Pushkar (Rajasthan) during the camel festival, they found it a “tad salty”due of the salty taste of camel’s milk. They recollected with wonder, Kolkata’s lebu cha intriguing blend of tea flavoured with kala namak, lime and crushed Hajmola. At Leh and Ladakh, their cuppa was the characteristic yak butter tea, which “tasted more like soup”. They had mint and lemon grass flavoured tea in Orissa, whereas tea vendors in Delhi and other parts of India mostly brewed milky tea,

40 theindiantrumpet.com

usually flavoured with ginger and cardamom. Giving their story a bit of a political flavour, they speak about their visit to Patna, Bihar to attend Narendra Modi’s Hunkar Rally. Why NaMo? Because of his humble background as a chaiwallah’s son, of course. Not only did they visit the NaMo tea stalls of Patna, but also witnessed the eight serial blasts that rocked the city on October 27. One of their chai anecdotes features Laxman Rao who has a chai stand near the Hindi Bhawan in New Delhi. Rao has authored 24 books in Hindi, which include novels, plays and essays on India’s political scenario. These works have won him great acclaim. They mention Deepu ji’s tea stall in the campus of The Delhi College of Economics (New Delhi) with great fondness. Deepu ji maintains a diary wherein students and faculty scribble small notes, poems etc. about him and his tea stall. These students continue to visit him even after they have graduated and therein lies the appeal of this unique chaiwallah and his tea stall. They also mention a tea vendor from Gurgaon who, from the proceeds of his chai shop has eventually


Everywhere we went our chai experiences were unique, be it at a stall on the roadside or while visiting an Indian home...

} Resham and Zach indulge in a cup of chai on one Christmas eve, with a chaiwallah in Mumbai

theindiantrumpet.com

RESHAM & ZACH .41


Ganesh, a chaiwallah in Patna

trumpet lead

managed to own a fleet of cars, which he now rents out as cabs. They were entranced by the adda culture of Kolkata and call it a unique experience. Gellatly also talks about the women chai makers of Kolkata as opposed to Delhi, where women managing tea stalls singlehandedly is a rarity. A chaiwallah for them is not merely a person manning a boiling vat of chai at a street corner stall. Even people who welcome them home for a cup of tea feature in their chai stories. They reminisce about their experience at a home in Haryana where the hosts brewed their tea with fresh milk from their own buffalo. They fondly recollect relishing tulsi tea served to them in one home. But Marks speaks most fondly of a Nepali lady, Jhumka Aunty. She is the one who inspired him to write about chai and chaiwallahs. She made him feel at home during his tenure as a teacher in a Delhi school – with a warm smile and piping hot

42 theindiantrumpet.com

adrak chai! He just had to reconnect with her when he went back to India for his project. They highlight the fact of not having faced any language problems hitherto in their interactions with tea vendors. They attribute it to their smattering of Hindi and to the helpful bystanders who are more than happy to help out with translations. At Mumbai they met Balwant Singh Negi - the unique Bollywood spot boy, who from the last 40 years has been providing many a movie crew their much needed supply of between-the-shots chai . They now plan to go to Goa and then to Chennai and Bengaluru. “We have planned our visit to Assam and Darjeeling in March so that we’re there for the first flush,” says Marks and warmly signs off.

To know more about their journey visit chaiwallahsofindia.com.


(Clockwise) A chai stand, Bagbazar, Kolkata. Jhumka Aunty, the Nepali lady, the one who inspired the duo to document the chai tales. A chaiwallah, Shobhan Barwa, Kolkata.The camel-milk chai, Pushkar, Rajasthan.

.43

theindiantrumpet.com

Prachi Goyal is a homemaker and the mother of two beautiful girls. An English (Honours) graduate and post graduate in Human Resource Development, she believes in living a simple and clutter free life. She is a columnist and art critic, and covers art for various magazines. She loves baking, writing poetry and gardening. Her other loves include Madhubani art.


the clay cups

PI KE PUHT: ‘DRINK AND SMASH’! AUSTRALIA-BASED ARTIST AND CURATOR SIAN PASCALE ROMANCES THE KULHAD. words CHHAVI BHATIA

Every morning, a richly brewed cup of chai is what gets us going for the day. Some prefer it in glass tumblers; others want it the ‘English’ way, with chinaware and tea cosies. Then there’s the staple of train journeys: kulhads, the cheap and eco-friendly clay cups that evoke memories of sipping milky tea with dollops of gossip and namkeens shared among fellow travellers. Like many indigenous items, we tend to take kulhads for granted, but for Australia-based curator and artist Sian Pascale, they’re beautiful pieces to be cherished, preserved and re-worked. We asked her how she arrived at this cultural viewpoint. What inspired you to design & beautify humble clay cups? The cups I’ve produced are conceptual pieces based around the consumption culture. Travelling through India I drank from terracotta cups and marvelled at their simple, sensorial beauty. The way the wood-fired earthy taste mixes subtly mix with warm, sweet chai, the satisfying sound of drained kulhads smashing against railway tracks, and the cups’ cyclical nature: made from the earth and returned to the earth.

over a cup of chai

Over the years, I watched as these wonderful vessels were replaced with awful plastic cutting cups and it horrified me to see them littered across the country. I embedded my own clay kulhad designs with seeds so that when the cups are destroyed they enhance the environment. It’s interesting to explore the idea that in order for pieces of art to be fulfilled they have to be thrown away, something most people feel uncomfortable doing after purchasing them. Did you have any previous links to India, or did you just chance on the kulhads? And why decorate them? India is a country that has intrigued and drawn travellers to it for thousands of years. Some of these people connect with the country in a special way, benefiting from its wonderful vibrancy and complexity. I suppose I’m one of those people. I don’t see the cups as ‘decorated’ or ‘beautified’; you could say their original concept has been

Sian Pascale, the artist behind the wonderful cups

modified, but it’s nice to think they also have aesthetic appeal. Have you looked at other forms of Indian pottery? Do you plan to venture further into Indian art? It hasn’t been easy to investigate other forms of Indian pottery, but I would love to, if they still exist. I was able to explore the terracotta industry in Dharavi (Mumbai), and having been commissioned to produce the cups for London Design Week 2013 I employed a potter there to make them. It was fascinating to watch him and find out about the local community. I don’t think what I do could ever be described as ‘Indian art’ because I’m not Indian. I’m half inspired by the craft and materials in India and half by my European / Australian education / outlook. My work spans art, furniture and interior architecture and I’m always creating, so all these factors will continue to influence my designs.

To know more, sianpascale.blogspot.com

Chhavi Bhatia ventured into journalism early on life; after many years working on leading English dailies, she realised the profession is more about the proverbial nose for news than being creative. She now indulges in poetry, some serious blogging, music, cooking and buying books, which gives her a far better high than the yellow metal.

44 theindiantrumpet.com


theindiantrumpet.com

.45

Sian Pascale’s clay cups that have been embedded with seeds


tax free entertainment 46 theindiantrumpet.com


{

ek garam ki piyali ho

{

​ O A BACKDROP OF CLANKING POTS AND T PANS, BISCUIT MUNCHING, MONEY RUSTLING AND THE CALL OF THE CHAIWALLAH, CONVERSATIONS FLOW… THE LOCAL STALL IS HOME TO RUMOURS, NEWS, GOSSIP, PHILOSOPHIES, STORIES, DREAMS, BULLETINS, FEARS, RESULTS, PROMOTIONS, BUSINESS AND POLITICS. WHAT DID YOU POUR OUT TODAY? words & artwork SANKET B JACK

.47

theindiantrumpet.com

​Sanket B. Jack is an engineer by degree, MBA by profession and cartoonist by passion, portraying society’s idiosyncrasies and ignorance through his images. He believes as much in the power of a smile as he does in satire: ‘it takes 43 muscles to frown and 17 to smile but only one to criticise’. Find him at facebook.com/Jackartoons


serigraphs,

a fine investment

​ART JUST GOT AFFORDABLE. ASPIRING COLLECTORS CAN NOW ADORN THEIR WALLS WITH SERIGRAPHS, QUALITY RENDITIONS OF ORIGINAL WORKS. words HEMAL MEHTA

As a young art lover, owning art pieces by M. F. Hussain, Jehangir Sabavala and Syed Haider Raza seems nothing short of a dream to me. Investing in Indian art is definitely a rich man’s game, especially when spectacular works are auctioned at high profile events. ​Moreover, a developed awareness of the art world is required to determine a painting’s true value. If you’re a budding art enthusiast or investor planning your own collection, serigraphs are a smart way forward. Here are ideas to help get you started. Understanding the roots of serigraphy

idhar udhar

A serigraph is essentially a rendition of an original artwork achieved through the silk screen-printing process. ‘Seri’ is the Latin word for silk and ‘graphos’ means ‘drawn’ in Greek, hence ‘serigraph’: drawn through silk. Traditionally, stencils have been popular worldwide to decorate fabrics, scriptures, robes and artifacts. In the 20th century artistic screen-printing ​ took definitive shape and the art of serigraphy was born. The artist and his artwork Even though a serigraph is a screen print for artistic purposes, the artist is closely associated with the process. Consulted at the outset, the artist may wish to make changes to the original piece before the serigraphy begins. They also decide how many prints should be made (a number usually ranging between 30 and 200): the fewer the prints, the greater their value. The printing technique is highly elaborate. It begins with breaking the image down into separate colours. A fine mesh silk screen is stretched tight on a frame made from wood or aluminum and separate

48 theindiantrumpet.com

inks are forced through it. The work is complete once all the colours are printed. The entire process is conducted under the artist’s personal supervision and on completion, they sign, authenticate and number every piece. Good studios prefer to print onto museum quality paper so the serigraphs don’t deteriorate and lose their value. Serigraphs for investment An original artwork by a famous artist will begin at a few lakh rupees. In contrast the serigraph can cost anywhere between `30,000 to `150,000: on average only 5% of the original. Art publisher Lavesh Jagasia of The Serigraph Studio explains, “When a serigraph is released for the first time, the first ten pieces are sold at a base price. Once those are sold, the next set of prints will be sold at a higher price. Once the limited edition serigraphs of a particular artist are sold out, a secondary market opens up that brings an appreciation or upswing for that particular serigraph.”

Where to buy?

Lavesh Jagasia’s ‘The Serigraph Studio’ (serigraphstudio. com) promotes contemporary Indian serigraphs - signed, limited editions by renowned senior artists such as S. H. Raza, Ram Kumar, Jogen Chowdhary and Jehangir Sabavala. But if you’re looking for M. F. Hussain’s serigraphs in particular, check out Marvel Art Gallery (marvelartgallery. com), which hosts an impressive range of his serigraphs including Iqbal, Gajagamini, Asthavinayak, the Taj Series and Mahabharat portfolio.


There are several reasons that make serigraphs a sound investment. First, you don’t need much knowledge of art. Most studios only work with artists that are already popular, so it’s likely their serigraphs are always going to be in demand. Second, each serigraph is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity confirming the number of the print among the series produced. It also guarantees that no more serigraphs of the same painting will be released. As every serigraph is produced in a ‘limited edition’ their value tends to increase.

Shanti Dave’s limited edition serigraph, “LIFE”. Painted in 1957, the year Mr. Dave won the National Award for “LIFE” (Original Painting). Launched by Marvel Graphic Studio, Ahmedabad.

Ravindra Salve‘s The World Of Ravindra Salve (18 x 14 inch) serigraph on paper. Set of 6, Limited Edition of 200. Signed and numbered, 2013. Launched by Marvel Graphic Studio, Ahmedabad.

Trends in serigraphs A niche segment of art lovers in India have already adopted serigraphs for corporate and social gifting. Recently, a friend, Chaitya Dhanvi Shah, MD of Marvel Graphic Studio in Ahmedabad, used the serigraph ‘Marriage procession’ by artist Ravindra Salve for his wedding invitations, “The idea was to include art elements in all aspects of the wedding to raise awareness of art. Moreover, we wanted to present the family and friends with a souvenir to mark the occasion forever.” He adds, “Today, serigraphs are selling like hot cakes with art market patrons picking them up as housewarming or festival gifts for family members.”

M.F. Hussain’s Set Of Eight - Gaja Gamini serigraphs. Launched by Marvel Graphic Studio, Ahmedabad.

(The views expressed by the writer are hers/his & don’t reflect that of the editor or the publication. We regret factual errors, if any.)

.49

theindiantrumpet.com

​ emal Mehta is a communications professional with experience in blogging, content writing, public H relations and digital media. An aspiring entrepreneur, she has coffee in her veins and business ideas in her brains. Her bucket list includes backpacking Italy and hosting her own food show. Reach her at theahmedabadblog.com where she’s editor and blogger-in-chief, writing about her favourite city, Ahmedabad.


fashion fry

TE A .TO AS IN THE WORLD OF CONTEMPORARY FASHION, CHAI IS THE NEW MUSE. WE RAISE A CUP TO THE CHANGE IN TASTE. words NASRIN MODAK-SIDDIQI

50 theindiantrumpet.com


(Facing page & below) Nida Mahmood romances the many facets of chai.

ST. TREN D motif has created a stir on the runway. Off it,

well-heeled fashionistas aren’t afraid to flaunt these nouveau items: it captures their punk mood. Jewellery designer and avid green tea drinker Shaheen Abbas finds the prints fun and whimsical, “They’re great conversation starters

.51

theindiantrumpet.com

Beautiful kettles, dainty tea cups, pretty cosies, mystical masala, cutting chai: everything about tea can pique one’s imagination. Over the years, it has inspired designers to create prints, hues, themes, and complete collections. From Amy Butler’s Tropicali Tea Bag to Etsy’s Kenyan White Tea Leaf scarves to our homegrown designers’ steaming cup T-shirts, jackets and sarees, the


and make you stand out. Once in a while, I like to digress from fashion rulebooks.” The brew even became a muse for non-tea drinking designer Nida Mahmood. In her collection High on Chai elements associated with tea stalls, like newspapers, crows and tarpaulin became artsy doodles on sarees, tees, structured dresses, tunics, jackets and bags; très chic. “I thought about handling street stall imagery. It had to be easy, relaxed and casual, hence the line drawings.” Nida’s intrigued by the oftenoverlooked facets of everyday life. She loves working on simple, in-your-face ideas and making them larger than life. “Chai was one of those concepts. I don’t drink it but find the way people are hooked on it thought provoking.

TEA, THE NEW TRENDSETTER?

fashion fry

Tea is newly trending in bio couture. Designer Suzanne Lee has been experimenting with microbial-cellulose fabric composed of millions of bacteria cultivated in bathtubs of sweet green tea. Soon we’ll be growing clothes in our own backyards. Costume designers have been dyeing garments with tea, creating aged, refined and glamorous looks. While veteran Indian designers like Sabyasachi Mukherjee often employ this technique, new age types like Nimish Shah have tried it too. “I love the sepia tone it gives to clothes,” says Shah, who used it in his debut collection on cotton blouses with zardosi cuffs.

52 theindiantrumpet.com

The morning cuppa is an intrinsic part of daily lives, yet people are oblivious to its power over them.” She took tea inspiration to another level with hand painted cups and kettles as key elements at a wedding venue. Modest cups and saucers will soon form part of her light installations. Fresh off the ramp is Play Clan’s chai-inspired print based pret collection, crisp and peppy, where the drape of a humble saree creates a new kind of resort wear. It was a part of a Mohalla theme, tribute to the Indian neighbourhood playing silent spectator to gossip, rumour, games of carom, endless cups of tea and hot samosas. “For us, cutting chai is a great muse as it represents our core philosophy: making the mundane magical,” says brand founder Himanshu Dogra. His favourite chai is strong and flavourful, with ginger and green cardamom. “Chai is our national drink. A good cup can be found anywhere from a dhaba to a friend’s place. Each has its signature taste and calls for a ceremony to connect with each other, without the hangover!”

Chai is a multi-dimensional stimulus, mostly kitschy, like us Indians. From the brew’s colour on bags and accessories to innovative tea leaf and kettle motifs, we’re big fans of style with an edge. We love unconventional pop art prints that celebrate India and its modesty even if they appear loud. These eclectic chaiwallah prints tell our life stories. Whoever said ‘happiness is in a cup of tea’ was right. Isn’t it a good idea to wear some cheer?


Play Clan celebrates the chai, an integral part of every mohalla.

.53

theindiantrumpet.com

Nasrin Modak-Siddiqi is a writer, foodie, traveller and a movie-buff. She has a lot of stories to tell, some real and many that are a figment of her imagination. Currently on a sabbatical from a full-time writer’s job, her motivation to get out of bed is the promise of a good trip, meal, book, movie or all of them. Her latest pastime is writing fiction, clicking photographs and editing old ones to make them look more dramatic. She can be found at continuumera.blogspot.com.


trumpet lead

chais of the world

54 theindiantrumpet.com

{

Chai. It’s amazing how a small cup of brewed tea leaves laden ‘Feeling tired? Arre! Have some chai.’ ‘We’re bored, chal let’s Whatever the conundrum, the answer is always a cup of cha piqued when I see the word chai on menus in different countrie to a steaming cup of strong Indian tea. However, that may not interesting combination of the use of tea leaves with spices an interesting enough as a drink that keeps me connected in some home. Here is a walk down the memory lane for

words DELNA PRA


AKASHAN

.55

theindiantrumpet.com

{

n with milk and sugar is every Indian’s antidote for any reason. s get some chai.’ ‘It’s raining outside, ek mast chai ho jaaye!’ ai. As an avid traveller (and chai lover) my curiosity is always es. It’s interesting how my mind immediately connects the word always be true. What is served in front of me most often is an nd flavours. Not my typical cup of Indian chai but nonetheless e indefinite way to my Indian roots when I am home away from r the many variations of chai that I’ve savoured.


CHOCOLATE TEA I know the thought of this blend makes you cringe. That was my initial reaction when my aunt bought me some chocolate tea leaves as a souvenir from Ooty – one of India’s top tea destinations. When you muster up the courage and take that first sip you will be amazed that it doesn’t taste so bad after all. It’s a tea with a medium strength and subtle undertones of chocolate flavour.

trumpet lead

CHAI LATTE This one’s a no-brainer and probably the king of them all when it comes to popularity. Thanks to Starbucks. Chai latte is a rather fancy way of saying ‘I’ll have my chai with milk, please!’ When you don’t feel like caffeine on your next Starbucks visit, try this spiced black tea blend with steamed milk.

56 theindiantrumpet.com

WHITE CHOCOLATE CHAI I tried this variation of tea at Max Brenner Chocolate Bar in Sydney. The chai comes in a fancy jar with mixed spices. Allow it to brew for five minutes and then strain it into your cup. This blend is addictive and I found myself visiting Max Brenner’s on my last day just to have a last cup of White Chocolate Chai!

KADAK CHAI This is one of the most popular versions of the Indian chai. Good quality black tea leaves or dust are brewed for a long time in boiling water before being blended with milk and sugar. This chai is almost like a tequila shot – wakes up the dead, as they say. Whether in India or Indian neighbourhoods around the world, look out for the smaller chai stalls or shops. That is where you get some authentic Kadak Chai. Famous variations to this chai are with ginger (Adrak chai), mint (Pudina chai) and Indian spices (Masala chai).

CUTTIN Need I baap of than the Mumba world’s, glass an literally tea mad sugar, g large st you’re r

ICED TEA From all my travels, I’ve noticed that ic tea is more popular in the West than i East. A tall glass of ice served with bla tea coupled with a few sprigs of mint a a slice of lemon. Comes in various flav such as peach, raspberry, strawberry a passion fruit among others. Sugar syru always served on the side – sweeten it the way you like it.

ZAFFRANI CHAI This one is my all-time favourite. The Iranian people famous for spice trading in Dubai pronounced saffron as zaffran and that’s how the tea got its name. I discovered the best chai joint in Dubai, Al Masa cafeteria, hidden away in the small alleys of old town Satwa. It was my yoga instructor who promised to introduce me to some awesome chai if I completed my 108 Surya Namaskars. And thank god I did. Strong black tea with milk blended with saffron drops and finished off with saffron threads – sip it while it’s piping hot!


NG CHAI say any more? This chai is like the f all chais! Hailing from none other e city of Mumbai, cutting chai is every aikar’s, and now, possibly, the entire , favourite. Served typically in a small nd hence the word cutting which, means half. A delicious and potent de from brewing tea leaves with milk, ginger and spices for a long time in a teel kettle. Just a couple of sips and ready to kick start your day.

ced in the ack and vours and up is t just

COCKTAIL DES ÎLES & YIN YANG Some of the best teas are bought when you just stumble upon them. These two green tea fusions were picked up at a Christmas market in Toulouse, South of France. A fusion of citron, passion fruit, papaya, pamplemousse, fleur d’orange among other summery fruits – always look out for tisanes (herbal tea) as they are a great alternative to milk teas. Not to mention, you can always impress your guests with some fancy tea names!

KASHMIRI TEA Also, popularly known as ‘Pink Tea’, this tea is an exotic blend of sliced or powdered almonds and pistachios. Some versions even have a tinge of bicarbonate of soda to give it that pinkish/crimson colour. A milk-based tea, doused in sugar and with a buttery texture is meant to leave you feeling warm inside just as intended by the Kashmiris’ to combat cold winters.

TEH TARIK GINGER Influenced from the Indian milk tea, Teh Tarik is popular in Southeast Asia, especially Singapore and Malaysia. I have tasted the ginger version and unlike its Indian counterpart, this pulled tea (this reference is given because it is strewn between two dishes when pouring) is quite strong – almost like a herbal decoction. Made with both condensed and evaporated milk, Teh Tarik Ginger is great to warm you up on a cool winter evening.

SILVER NEEDLE WHITE TEA & OOLONG SUPREME TEA I bought some loose tea leaves while in New Delhi from one of the local chai shops in the city. The store manager convinced me of its authenticity and health benefits. So I simply replaced my evening caffeine with these light but very potent varieties of Darjeeling’s pride. Keeps you feeling light, energised and calm – one to two cups a day is the way to go!

GREEN TEA This tea has made its way up the charts because of its health quotient. Cancer relieving, weight loss, great skin, antioxidant dose … whatever it may be, Green tea is too darn good to be missed. Just a pinch in a tea strainer kept in hot water for 5 to 7 minutes and, you’re sipping in all the health benefits that come with the famous Chinese Green tea.

.57

theindiantrumpet.com

Indian by origin, Delna was born and raised in Dubai. A true vagabond by nature, she loves experiencing world cultures through food and travelling. She is a Certified Culinary Travel Professional (CCTP) from the World Food Travel Association, USA. On her bucket list is to visit Antarctica and publish her own book someday. Her life’s mantra: ‘my life isn’t perfect – but I’m grateful!’ Meet Delna as she blogs at discoverspice.net and thenomadthinks.wordpress.com.


angry toot

WE’RE ANGRY AND WE DON’T WANT THIS ANGER TO DIE. WRITE TO US AT THEINDIANTRUMPET@GMAIL.COM. WE PLEDGE THAT WE WILL KEEP THE ANGER ALIVE IN EACH AND EVERY ISSUE OF THE INDIAN TRUMPET MAGAZINE. There are seasons. If you are a natureholic then you would know of summer, autumn, spring and winter. If you are a fashionholic then you would know of Winter, Spring/ Summer and Fall/Pre-Fall. And if you are an Indian then you would know of the scam season, rape season, incest season, dowry season, bomb season, murder season… This ‘season’ too shall pass? Once upon a time we got obsessed with kids falling in pits. The whole nation prayed for a child who was in a pit and troops of men tried to save his life. Did no one fall in a pit post-that? Were all the manholes covered after that? We don’t remember. We moved on. Once upon a time we got obsessed with incest victims? Our newspaper splashed gruesome tales. Did no hand reach a place where it should have not, after that? We don’t remember. We moved on. Once upon a time we got obsessed with a 23-year-old who was gang raped? Then a six-year-old, then a 45-year-old, now again a 22-yearold… We will soon not remember. We will move on. This is the rape season. This phase shall too pass? LET’S NOT MOVE ON. DON’T LET THIS PHASE PASS.

Anne Cherian

Reema Bajaj

Harpreet Singh Hora

Abhinav A Dudeja

Just coz u are frustrated and out of control, doesn’t mean I’ll feel scared and stop living my life. I can proudly say, My mama raised me well.

I don’t blame the lack of proper laws regarding rape cases the reason behind the increasing crimes against women. 1. Its the failure of legal machinery to deliver timely justice.

Shameful Incident for India Again!!! In spite of many laws and advanced education, gang rape has become the norm. Get rid of these rapists by punishing them in the brutal way possible. These filthy animals should be hanged to death. Wake up people!!!

Its unbelievable that in a country where the country itself is considered as ‘Maa’ has fallen to this level.

Sumit Arora

2. The mentality of seeing women as inferior. 3. The mental and social harassment if they are the victim of rape (the third being the reason that many cases go unreported.)

Neha Pande We all need to find an outlet to do our bit for the cause. We need to work and come together as one, giving a flicker of hope for a safer society.

There are miles to go and this is just the beginning. We can bring a change. I am happy to see that even men have now joined this fight, and working towards creating a society that respects women. I never shy away from standing against injustice and I am glad to see that more & more people are now supporting what is right. We should not give up hope.

angry toot

HANG THE RAPIST. Is it a solution? A deterrent? An act of delivering justice? This is the question we’d asked you in our last edition.

YES

60 PER CENT OF THE READERS SAID . DO YOU AGREE? HAVE YOUR SAY. KEEP WATCHING THIS SPACE. MAKE A DIFFERENCE. JOIN THE FIGHT.

(Please note: The views expressed by readers in this section are solely theirs and don’t reflect that of the editor or the publication. These are original pieces/words sent by the readers, and are being ‘printed’ as ‘submitted’.)

58 theindiantrumpet.com


trumpet giveaway artwork NISHANT MUDGAL

.59

theindiantrumpet.com

An exclusive poster for our lovely readers. Download it for free from the website now!


LET’S DRESS UP EVERY LITTLE CORNER OF OUR HOMES

bazaar

At this time of year, sunny days call for picnics at the beach or the neighbourhood park. The Jasper Picnic basket helps you get everything organised. Available at Debenhams, debenhams.com

60 theindiantrumpet.com

Craving a touch of vintage? Brighten up your living room with these distressed home building block words. Available at dotcomgiftshop.com


If you’re game for an arty meal, try this ceramic set. Abode, Magpie’s latest collaboration with Mengsel, features Luzelle van de Westhuizen’s quirky animals captured in their natural habitats. Available at magpieline.com

Have a little lunchtime fun: fill up these snack boxes that speak just what’s on your mind and share the goodies around. Available at Paperchase, paperchase.co.uk

theindiantrumpet.com

.61


UP ABOVE THE W DEEP GORGES, RIPPLING MOUNTAIN RANGES, EXPANDED RIVER BASINS IN WIDE OPEN VALLEYS, INTRIGUING ROCK FORMATIONS, SLOSHING GLACIAL RIVULETS, RICH FLORA & FAUNA... A DAY TREK IN THE SPITI VALLEY IS MADE UP OF POSTCARD MOMENTS.

the globe & the gully

words & images SATYENDER S DHULL

62 theindiantrumpet.com


WORLD SO HIGH On our first morning, after daybreak, loaded with limited supplies that would last us a day, we started the steep climb towards the pastures of Kaza. The seven-kilometre sheer ascent took us to the village Langza (4420m). A narrow jeep track connects the village over the steep Shilla Gorge with other neighbouring villages including Gette, Tashigong, Hikkim, Komic, etc. But we preferred taking the harsher approach as the guesthouse owner had warned us the previous evening about road-repair work currently undertaken by the PWD department, which meant the road could be closed for traffic movement. Huffing and puffing, we reached Langza in about four hours to come within a handshake distance with the magnificent Chau Chau Khang Nalda (6303m), literally meaning “the mountain-princess on which the sun and the moon shine”. I had earlier read about its astonishing beauty in the Himalayan Journal edited by Harish Kapadia. The gigantic mountain

The statue of meditating Buddha – sitting crosslegged – on a mound above the village overlooking the Zanskar and the Great Himalayan Range, as well as the newly-renovated village monastery made the visit to the picture-perfect village even more incredible. As per the Bhaisajyaguru Sutra, this pose, also referred to as Medicine Buddha symbolises the Buddha’s meditation to ward-off any disease inner as well as outer. The preservation of local flora and fauna could rightly be attributed to the teachings of Buddhism. The followers of Buddhism in the transHimalayan region imbibe in them the motto Live and Let Live. While home-stays are popular here, the rounded

.63

theindiantrumpet.com

Medicine Buddha guarding the pastureland from evil spirits

rises suddenly and appears to be positioned as a backdrop for the village, which sits in the lap of the vast expanse of greenery around. Eclipsed by a small cloud, the mountain peak, like a newly-wed bride, refused to reveal its face during our entire stay there.


the globe & the gully Spiti river as viewed from pastures; village Rangrik is also in the frame

64 theindiantrumpet.com


Kaza as viewed from the slopes

meadow, lacking overgrown vegetation, makes for a perfect camping ground. An added bonus is that it is a treasure trove of fossils! Campers need to carry their own tents armed with supplies to make their stay safe and comfortable. Farther out into the pastures are more camp-worthy sites, each with its own wealth of undersea-fossils and viewpoints. Reminiscent of earth’s internal movements, the vast and arid terrain, once a sea, is said to record every geological age in pristine formations. Inching skywards, the Great Himalayas that enclose Spiti in a crescent, prevent moisture-laden clouds from reaching the region thereby creating an arid and desolate landscape. From the village Gompa, a 360 degree view encompasses almost every topographical feature of the trans-Himalayan region including deep gorges, the awe-inspiring heights of snow-capped mountains as well as ridges, rippling mountain ranges, expanded river basins in wide open valleys, intriguing rock formations, sloshing glacial rivulets, rich flora as well as fauna and expansive meadows. Extending from Nanga Parbat Peak in the west to Namcha Barwa in the east, the Himalayas are not only known to be widest in this western region but also possess amazing, intricate geological mysteries. Known as Western Himalayas in the geographical parlance, the area comprises the region west of the Tons-Yamuna gorge right up to the Indus in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK), as well as the region to the north of Shivaliks until the snowy peaks towards the northeast direction, which mark a natural boundary with Tibet. Travelling northwards, the various mountain subsystems that come under the Western Himalayas are the Shivaliks, The Outer Himalaya Range, The Mid-Himalaya Range, The Great Himalayan Range and The Trans-Himalayan Region. Unlike the ranges in the lower Himalayas, located southwest of the Great Himalayan Range, that rise in succession one after the other, the trans-Himalayan region is largely a featureless expanse of high-altitude desert terrain.

Geographically, the trans-Himalayan region lies northward of the Great Himalayan Range, which after reaching its crescendo drop away forming several ranges as well as ridges running parallel to itself. With elevations ranging from 4500-7500 m, the significant ranges of this region are christened as Zanskar, Ladakh and Karakoram. The topography is sliced into numerous valleys by one of the most prominent riversystems including the Indus, the Spiti, the Sutlej and the Chenab (Chandrabhaga). Culturally, the regions are linked by a common thread including architecture, religion, practices, food, etc. with minor variations related to language differing from valley to valley. Submitting to the stubborn massif that refused to reveal itself, we took a few photographs and left the dreamland facing strong headwinds downhill. On the way I captured a myriad of perspectives the landscape had to offer including that of the Kanamo Peak (5964m). With a limited zoom, photographing the shy birds, up there, is always a problem. We were back in town, before the light faded, where a sumptuous feast awaited us at the guesthouse. (Excerpts from the acclaimed trans-Himalayan diaries of bNomadic) (The views expressed by the writer are hers/his & don’t reflect that of the editor or the publication. We regret factual errors, if any.)

.65

theindiantrumpet.com

Satyender S Dhull introduces himself as a devoted bird-watcher, adventure and travel enthusiast. As a co-founder, he manages the affairs of a society dedicated to conserve wildlife. He often wanders to popular as well as offbeat travel-destinations. Currently, he divides his time between managing routine-political affairs of his father’s constituency and roaming in the jungles. He recently started to chronicle his travels and explorations in the form of a weblog, bnomadic. wordpress.com. The intent behind the blog is to help the travel enthusiasts in planning their trip and provide them with a sort of virtual tour. He believes in and follows the age-old wisdom of gathering knowledge and gaining experience by way of travelling. Although, India will always be his first choice he would love to rove in the unknown and unheard of lands abroad.


desi lit

The man

who loved tea to its last dreg

66 theindiantrumpet.com

words CHELLE VIEGAS


His first and last love was tea.

They looked forward to smoking while drinking tea.

The first time he smelled tea powder brewing on the stove, its colour darkening from yellow to brown, there was no turning back.

Now there was nothing to look forward to….

Shivam was known as the guy who used the teacup icon on WhatsApp ‘a little too much’.

He had never been here before.

Oh yes there was… that last cup of tea… he had to choose wisely...

But no one knew the extent of his obsession.

He couldn’t go back in time and visit his favourite place so might as well try tea in a different place.

His favourite line was ‘Every cup of tea is my cup of tea’.

But this would be his last cup.

His first question to any girl before he even thought of dating her was, ‘Do you drink tea?’

Would it be worth it?

And if her expression happened to be skeptical even though her answer was ‘Yes’, he mentally rejected her.

Was it enough to pay reverence for a lifetime’s love of tea?

Once, during his usual daydreaming, he thought about naming his kids ‘tea’ in different languages.

Would it overshadow his memories? Maybe not. He decided to take the chance.

Tae, Tee, Chai, Cha, etc.

He could return home and make tea his way and relish it.

And he fantasised about his ideal home where the upholstery would have tea leaf and cup patterns.

But he restricted himself from turning back.

He had T-shirts with ‘tea-shirt’ printed on them.

Maybe after all this time. He would get some closure.

He tasted all kinds of tea. Blue tea, Pink tea, Yellow tea, Green tea, Black tea, Darjeeling tea.

He took a deep breath and moved forward.

He saved money to get a tea cup tattoo on his biceps, which people found absurd and intriguing. His eyesight was perfect yet he had special tea cup-shaped glasses made that circled his eyes. He had tried tea in glass, steel, china and paper cups. But he favoured the earthern pots. *** He was crossing the road. He was about to have his last cup of tea.

Maybe that last cup of tea had the answer.

*** His fingers were jittery. He sat staring at the tea cup. He smiled when he realised that by now half his tea would have vanished had he been waiting to drink it in the good old days. A line of tea ran down the front of the cup staining the table cloth. It looked like drool escaping an old person’s mouth. He ceremoniously removed a cigarette out of his pack and lit it.

As the headlights of the passing car flashed, he went into flashback to pacify himself.

He was too afraid to sip the tea. He didn’t want to finish it.

The iron seats were cold. He couldn’t escape its chill through his flimsy shorts.

He was face to face with it now.

The moment they sat, their mouths watered for the tea that would be served in a second.

Was that tea shop still open?

Shivam didn’t even have to signal the bhaiya for the steaming glasses.

Or was he just sick?

As they touched the table a woman in a red saree passed by shifting their focus. Shivam’s friend exclaimed , ‘Ye le saade che walli aa gayi.’ (See, the 6.30pm female has come)

But he had to find his answer. Where were his friends now? Would he be always known as the tea-minator? He drank it all in one sip and put the cup down. The taste didn’t matter. The colour didn’t.

A driver cursed and honked him into consciousness as he reached the other side, hesitant with every step. But he returned to his reverie almost immediately.

The fragrance didn’t.

Conversations over tea were the most cherished.

He bud his smoke, smiled and tipped the waiter with a cheque. He had finally found his answer.

Politics, movies, girls and what not.

He stared at the dregs. And it all made sense.

.67

theindiantrumpet.com

Chelle Viegas is the newly adopted pseudonym of Michelle D’costa. Her mom recently started calling her Chelle and she’s loving it. Viegas is her mom’s maiden name and Chelle is paying reverence to it. Her published works can be found here, michelledcostawrites.wordpress.com.


(Left & below): The splendid surroundings of The Farm. (Facing page, clockwise from top left): Chocolate Delight, Poh Pai Phak Sod, Lamb Burger and Pad Thai. (Facing page, below): The restaurant’s airy interior.

on the farm trumpet tastes

The sun is warm and the breeze is soft. We reach The Farm a little before lunch and enjoy the peace interspersed with mellow avian conversations. Sitting in our lush green lakeside arbour, marvelling at the blooming lotuses, it’s hard to believe we’re just a short drive from the centre of ‘skyscraper city’. The outdoor furnishings are impressive: tables crafted from logs, white wicker chairs and cosy hammock

swings. After a short stroll in the garden we settle at a table on the outdoor deck, suspended over the lake: a calm, reflective space. The emphasis here is on quality time: nourishing body and soul. The Thaibiased international menu changes with the seasons, featuring dishes made from the purest ingredients, picked in their prime. We choose Thai starters from our iPad menus: Tom Yum Goong, a spicy prawn soup and Poh Pai Phak Sod, vegetable summer rolls. The soup impresses us with its rich flavour and the light, healthy rolls prove a welcome change from the traditional fried variety.Our lamb burgers arrive next, topped with fresh salad leaves: quick bites swiftly dispatched before our plates of simple, satisfying Phad Thai rice noodles. The gluten free Chocolate Delight with vanilla ice cream makes for a sweet, smooth, fluffy end. But the real star for us is the ambience: come here to relax and smell the flowers.

The Farm, Al Barari, Opposite Falcon City, Dubai. To make reservations: thefarmdubai.com, info@thefarmdubai.com, +971 4 392 5660.

68 theindiantrumpet.com


theindiantrumpet.com

.69


JUST A FEW OF OUR FAVOURITE THINGS FOR THE ADORABLE ANGELS & BRATS

bazaar

A little light, a little play! A miniature menagerie that gently glows, that’s what Woodland Night Lights are all about. Available at dotcomgiftshop.com

70 theindiantrumpet.com

The ‘Pretend & Play Mini Cooker Set’ is for the chef in making. Let your munchkin dish a meal or two for the family. Available at sainsburys.co.uk


The new Little People’s Hair Care range from Johnson’s Baby is safe, gentle and effective. It promises to make your tiny tot’s topknot more manageable. Available at johnsonsbaby.com

This Cribs & Moses basket would keep your bundle of joy cosy. It even makes for a lovely gift for baby showers. Available at mothercare.ae

theindiantrumpet.com

.71


kohl

the eye catcher THE DARK-SIDE OF BEAUTY, KOHL-RIMMED EYES CAST A CHARM. CLEAN, SMUDGED OR GRUNGY, KOHL CALLED BY ANY NAME KAJAL OR SURMA REMAINS THE INDIAN WOMAN’S STAPLE BEAUTY FRILL.

fashion fry

words MAYMOONA MANDVIWALA

For centuries now, Indian beauty has been both an object of admiration and envy. And while it’s only natural for us, as Indians, to adorn ourselves with a riot of colours, we do also have an ‘’eye’’ for black. We are talking about Kajal (Hindi), Surma (Punjabi), Kanmashi (Malayalam) or Kohl (English) – a form of eyeliner that is applied around the edge of the eyes. The humble kohl may be the most understated cosmetic in the bouquet of the Indian beauty adornments, but it sure is the most popular. Mostly, it’s the women folk who take the lead in wearing this everyday make-up item – mostly to highlight the eyes, and sometimes even to portray darker skin tones by blending it with foundation. There are several ways of wearing the kohl. Personally, I love wearing it thicker around the outer part of the lower eyelid, smudging it slightly and gradually thinning it inwards. But then, most women and make-up experts would agree that wearing kohl is way beyond just ‘drawing a line’ and one sure can

72 theindiantrumpet.com

get pretty experimental. Type ‘’ways to wear kohl’’ on the search engine and one is flooded with results, but then one must pick what works best with one’s own sensibilities and also the eye shape/size/colour. While in modern times, kohl is usually purchased over the counter, not so long ago, it was made at home. My grandmother tells me how soot released from the flame of an oil-based lamp was mixed along with an oil or ointment to create this rather simple cosmetic. In fact, even today, some prefer using the home-made kohl rather than its counterpart that is made available by several well-known cosmetic brands. Kohl has been a part of the Indian women’s make-up kit for centuries now. But what’s interesting is that its usage extends beyond the domains of ‘cosmetic’. Mothers of new-borns often apply kohl on the eyes of babies to keep the eyes cool and at times, draw a little spot behind their ears to shun evil. A similar tradition that exists in the Dawoodi Bohra community - an


Islamic sub-sect, having its main presence in India is that to ward evil eyes off the new born by writing with kohl the Arabic alphabets ‫ ا‬and ‫ن‬, respectively, on extreme ends of either cheek, close to the centre of the ears. Another ancient tradition says that the look of every Indian bride is deemed to be complete only once the solah shringar (sixteen items of beautification) is done; this includes enhancing the bride’s beauty with the usage of kohl in the eye. But it isn’t just the women – or children – the men too often gotten kohl-eyed both in real and reel life. While the very charming Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) - a character in the Pirates of the Carribean - may have carried off the kohl with some élan in Hollywood, back home in Bollywood too we see a fair number of men wearing it. Be it the rustic village lad or the dark underworld crook, Bollywood make-up artists are adept at using kohl to portray varied characters. Often to highlight their eyes, and at other times to highlight their fake wounds! It is interesting to note that kohl is an integral aspect of the Indian culture,

so much so that ‘Kajal’ is a popular Indian name for a girl (American desis seem to love it!) and ‘Surma’ is a well-known Indian last name! So if you want to extend the effect of kohl beyond the beauty regimen you can do that too. As for those who are happy with kohl eyes, go ahead and make a dramatic statement. And even though you would be spoilt with hue choices like royal blue, dark green, smoky grey and more, I say stick to the good ol’ black. The charm of black is timeless. DIY Kohl: Ingredients: Thick cotton wick, ghee or til (Sesame) oil, oil lamp (capacity about 50 ml), copper plate (large enough to cover the lamp) Method: (1) Leave a spoon of oil/ ghee aside and pour the rest in the lamp and add the wick (2) Fix the copper plate on top of the lamp, such that the plate is slightly over the flame of the lamp and light the lamp (3) Collect the soot from the plate, mix with the remaining oil/ghee make it into a smooth buttery paste, box it up and refrigerate for about four hours.

Lancome, Le Crayon Khôl Waterproof

Colorbar, I-DEFINE Pencil

Colorbar, Kohl Intense Eyeliner

theindiantrumpet.com

.73


bazaar

BLUE. BLISS. BEAUTIFUL ‘BLISS’FUL TREASURES IN OUR LATEST GLAMBOX concept & styling THE INDIAN TRUMPET photography VISHAL KHULLAR

74 theindiantrumpet.com


(Facing page) The treats in the exclusive Bliss Glambox. (Above) fabulous foaming face wash: A 2-in-1 oil-free gel cleanser for all skin types; gently exfoliates with perfectly soft, round exfoliator beads effectively removes dirt and makeup. A non-stripping formula that rebalances & calms even the most scattered of skins with soothing botanicals. Guys have been known to sneak some as a shaving cream stand-in. lemon + sage or blood orange + white pepper body butter: Moisturizers known as butters tend to be heavier and more emollient and have a more luxurious feel as opposed to lotions. Body Butter is made of only natural oils with no waters added to it. These natural oils protect the skin from the outside elements, nourish and keep natural moisture in by providing a layer of oils on top of the skin. Body Butter is best used when the skin is wet, such as after a shower. A single product with this many uses is really a gift for your skin. Can be used for - hand care, to soften dry patches, foot care, cuticle softener, neck and décolletage moisturizer, after shaving leg balm (no more ‘fish-scale’ legs after shaving!), best of all a luxurious massage. So more butter please!

theindiantrumpet.com

.75


bazaar 76 theindiantrumpet.com


(Facing page, top to bottom) (Left column) Triple oxygen + c energizing cream: This lightweight gel-cream is formulated with a trio of oxygen ingredients and an advanced form of vitamin C to revive fatigued, sallow, stressed skin and give it that just-stepped-out-of-the-shower sheen. The unique pairing of oxygen, which helps to support cell respiration and super-powered form of Vitamin C, which reinforces collagen synthesis, helps the skin rebound from external and internal stresses, improves skin hydration, and breathes new life into lackluster complexions. Lemon + sage or blood orange + white pepper soapy suds: Parabens-free luxe lathering bath and shower gel, gently cleanses and conditions from shoulders to toes to leave skin clean and soft. Pour a little into your bath for sweet-smelling bubbles or add some to your loofah for soft, clean skin. Triple oxygen instant energizing mask: Super-quick fix for dull, tired and sallow, ‘I’m sick of my skin’ skin. Engineered to mimic the effects of our famous Triple Oxygen Treatment Facial in seconds! This complexion formula uses every ‘tech’ in the book to give you fresher, younger-looking skin. Delivers oxygen to the skin with innovative Fluid02 technology, lightens, and tightens the skin with the most active powerful form of Vitamin C available and protects cells from free radical damage with powerful antioxidants. (Right column) that’s incredi-‘peel’: We’ve reinvented the ‘peel’ with these convenient, single-step, no-rinse peel pads, engineered with innovative technology that gradually releases powerful levels of exfoliating glycolic acid throughout the night for serious skin renewal without the harsh irritation. Targets fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots and imperfections, retexturizes and soothes in just one step, time-release technology makes it gentle enough for all skin types. all this in the glam box: A monthly beauty subscription that allows one to try new beauty products & discover old favourites at an affordable price.

.77

theindiantrumpet.com

These products can be bought through the glambox website www.glambox.me and also at selected Debenhams, Faces, Va Va Voom stores & NEW at Areej Midrif City Centre (Dubai).


bharat darshan

FRESH OFF THE PAN: The comfort of sharing the sunrise and the newspaper with a layer of tea foam.

CHAI dh igyh pqLdh ​FOR A DESI, CUPS OF CHAI ARE PART OF THE RHYTHM, THE GROOVE. AND THEY’RE ALL UNIQUE: AMMA’S CUP OF TEA, THE TAPRI CHAI OUTSIDE THE OFFICE OR THE UBERCHIC CHAI LATTE. MAKING THEM IS AN ART AND THERE’S A KNACK TO ENJOYING THEM, TOO. HOW MANY SECONDS TO DIP THE BISCUIT, SO IT’S STILL CRISPY BUT DOESN’T FALL? WE GO ON A TEA TRAIL TO DISCOVER HOW THE CONCOCTION OF LEAVES, WATER AND MILK IS SHEER MAGIC. words & images PREETI RAGHUNATH

78 theindiantrumpet.com


TASTE OF FAMILIARITY: An old stove, a rusty pan, the overused strainer & a few commonplace tea glasses.

theindiantrumpet.com

.79


bharat darshan

CHAI

80 theindiantrumpet.com


(Left-Right) SPOUT, SOUND & SCENT: Listening to the sound of water bubbling, waiting for the cloud of steam to appear, sensing the whiff of tea leaves in the air…pouring down the tea into the favourite cup. HUMDRUM LIFE OVER A CUP OF CHAI: The rustle of the sheets, the bulletins from politics, business, sports, cinema, et al...the start of a day. SPILLING THE SECRET: The dexterous movement of hands as the scalding tea is transferred from one cup to another, cooling it down sans the spilling of a single drop. No one does it better than an Indian! TEA TALE: The loose tea blends with the spices to string an aromatic & flavouresome tale. theindiantrumpet.com

.81


bharat darshan

​ reeti Raghunath goes back and forth from Dubai: this is her third tryst with the city and she’s figured P out she really likes it here! A journalist on mommy mega-sabbatical, she’s currently romancing her Nikon, giving her photos of doors, people and cityscapes a kitschy twist. She’d be happy to chat with you; beyond the clicking she’ll also help decide what would work best in the frames on your walls. Find her here, preetiraghunath.wix.com/preeti-raghunath.

82 theindiantrumpet.com


(Clockwise) TEA PARTY: Crockery & cutlery, crackers and cookies, doilies & posies... THE LEAVES: From the simple charm of watching tea women pluck leaves to storing the beauties in a box at home. BAGGING IN: Every drop counts!

theindiantrumpet.com

.83


to the beach

BEAUTIFUL BEACHES AND A GENTLER WAY OF LIFE: MANY INDIAN TOO CALM? HERE’S WHAT NRIS LIV

words VISH

nri talk

Around two-thirds of the people of Mauritius, a tiny island off Africa’s south east coast (population: 1.2 million), are descendents of Indian indentured labourers brought there during British colonial rule, between 1834 and 1921. Which means that languages like Hindi, Marathi and Tamil are spoken there to this day, and festivals such as Diwali, Holi and Maha Shivaratri, to name but a few, are widely celebrated. When you think of Mauritius, are exotic, palm-fringed beaches all that spring to your mind? Well, think again. Various Indian companies - Indian Oil, State Bank of India, Mahanagar Telephone Limited – have brought economic progress and a surge in the number of expats working there.

84 theindiantrumpet.com

Mumbai born Milind Chavan, a financial advisor with VFS international, first visited Mauritius in 2005 and says the place kept drawing him back. He decided to settle there after friends introduced him to Preeti, who was based on the island. Cupid struck: happily married, they now have a five-year-old son, Sanjiy. Milind confesses that he misses his hometown, a feeling hidden deep within. “India has a strong magnetic force. I miss my friends and delicacies like Pav Bhaji, Masala Dosa, Naan, Vada Pav and Lassi.” He also rues the slow pace of Mauritius. “Here, life stops at 5pm; in Mumbai, I’d be up till 1am.” Production manager at Island Film Works, Amit Gupta had planned to leave India for Mauritius for a long time, so he grabbed the opportunity to move with both hands. After six years, he describes Mauritius as a ‘calm, quiet and laid back’ place with a work culture of its own. “There’s a ‘chalta hai’ attitude and at first it’s difficult to adjust here. But once you get used to that it’s a fantastic place to live and work.” He


hes & back?

NS FIND MAURITIUS APPEALING. BUT ARE THE WATERS JUST A LITTLE VING ON THE ISLAND HAVE TO SAY.

HAL BHEEROO

has no intentions to return home. “I don’t think I’ll ever be able to go back to India: Mauritius is a very beautiful island and pollution-free. Also, the people here are warm and friendly.” Living one up, Gupta describes himself as a ‘homebird’ and claims he’s good at cooking all kinds of Indian cuisine. “I often try my hand at mutton and chicken curry as well as paneer.” His favourite dish is Dahi Kali: chicken with curd and black pepper. When he first arrived, he says the streets of Quatre Bornes were often deserted. Now it’s livelier; expats have flocked there and Gupta always meets other Indians when he steps out for a walk. His daughter Paushali used to live with him but she’s moved to Mumbai to pursue her career. “Thanks to the Internet and Skype, I‘m able to speak to her regularly so it seems she’s never far away.” His advice for Indians about to relocate? “Lower your expectations: it’ll make the transition easier.” Another Indian expat and working professional, who’s headed a branch of his company in Mauritius for a year, says that the people are hospitable and it’s easy to fit in. “The best thing about the place is that it’s grounded in terms of Indian tradition and culture.” But on the flip side: “It’s a very small society: I feel confined. And Mauritius has very few good Hindi and English medium schools.” He cautions: “Don’t come here just for the sand and

sea. Mauritius is a small place you can see fully in two weeks, so only come here if you want a hasslefree life.” And he warns the career-driven people, describing the island’s professional mentality as “less ambitious, and lacking a sense of urgency.” Paresh Angad, who served in the Indian Air Force, worked in Germany and China for Yokohama Automobile for the past 13 years before landing in Mauritius. says: “A friend asked me to run the company here and contribute to its growth.” He and his family are in no hurry to return to India: “It’s easy to find Indian food at the supermarkets here. We spend maximum time at home and often call our Indian friends for dinner.” But Angad would prefer more nightlife: there’s no Indian ‘Club Culture’. And the island is low on sporting events and luxurious venues. While enjoying the relaxed work ethic he also finds there aren’t many opportunities for educated professionals. “Indians should look to the Middle East for better salaries.” Movies like Agneepath and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai can be misleading: Mauritius isn’t one long beach party. If you’re keen to move, weigh up the pros and cons, reduce your expectations and prepare yourself for a quieter life. It’s safe to say that few NRIs regret moving to Mauritius: the island’s alluring beaches, sense of calm, widely available Indian food and regularly celebrated festivals all make up for the lack of pace and opportunities for development.

(The views expressed by the writer are hers/his & don’t reflect that of the editor or the publication. We regret factual errors, if any.)

.85

theindiantrumpet.com

Vishal Bheeroo worked as a journalist for three years in an English newspaper in Mauritius. He holds a bachelor degree in Economics. He loves to write & blog about all things related to India. He loves Indian cinema and dreams of making a short film, someday. He is currently working on a rom-com novel and a script for a short film. He is a huge Amitabh Bachchan fan. He loves poetry, travelling and reading. He is currently based in Mauritius but has plans of returning to India, someday soon.


trumpet stay

View of the Dead Sea from the resort. (Facing page, top) The impressive pool. (L-R) The splendid lobby, striking architecture and cosy suite.

86 theindiantrumpet.com


revive & renew: at the Dead Sea

SUNLIGHT DANCING ON WATER: BEAUTY CASTS A SPELL AS CALMNESS DESCENDS. IMMERSE YOURSELF IN THE DEAD SEA AND AS THE WEIGHT OF THE WORLD DRIFTS AWAY YOU’LL FEEL THE KIND OF PEACE ONLY BESTOWED BY NATURE. THE HOLIDAY INN RESORT DEAD SEA, JORDAN IS JUST A HEARTBEAT AWAY FROM THE HEALING WATERS. MAJESTIC POOLS AND LUXURIOUS SPAS, STRIKING DÉCOR AND COSY SUITES, COUNTLESS CUISINES AND WARM SMILES: ALL LIVE UP TO THE PROMISE OF A LIFE-ENHANCING EXPERIENCE. words & images VISHAL KHULLAR

theindiantrumpet.com

.87


TAROT SPEAK FOR MARCH & APRIL 2014

ARIES

words VIMMI PURI CANCER You may switch jobs frequently, or find that people come and go from your life quickly. Be open minded and remember not to expect too much from others. You may choose to holiday in an exotic location, or simply take a sabbatical. Moderate gains, if self-employed or in a job, you may start feeling the need to either enhance your skills with study or diversify your product range. Open your mind, take risks. Watch your temper and if you’re prone to irritability, a conscious relaxation practice should help keep you calm.

GEMINI Vigilance is the keyword. Trust your intuition. You’ll find yourself forgiving and even forgetting the people who hurt you. You would be more relaxed and at ease with yourself, expect many moments of laughter, joy and sometimes relief. Singles can expect an engagement and married couples can look forward to a year of easy companionship. If in business, there may be a little cost cutting ahead. Communicating openly will be beneficial. Recognition may come your way. An ailment may take its time to heal. Try meditation, deep breathing and alternative forms of healing.

LEO Fiery Leos may have some truly testing moments that will mould you for future greatness. Challenges may appear not to demotivate you but to strengthen you. At work, stay away from petty politics. Cultivate diplomacy with sensitive family members. Singles may meet many people but not be ready to settle down. Financially something may need relooking. A new diet or fitness plan shows results and boosts your metabolism and confidence. A cool mind means a productive mind. When plagued with worry distract your mind consciously to a more positive subject. VIRGO

No more sitting on the fence about certain issues. The crossroads will appear before you, and you may choose to relocate, change industries, get married or divorced or alter your lifestyle drastically. Initially you may feel anxious about the tasks life has set before you, but once done you would wonder why you didn’t do it earlier. You may find yourself experiencing nostalgia frequently. A school reunion, or a chance to catch up with relatives you haven’t met in years will be fulfilling. You may find attracted to an older person, wiser in their ways yet so attentive. Married couples can expect to embark on a new cycle in their lives together; a house move, a career shift, etc. that will help you forge closer bonds. Try not to be impatient with loved ones; they need your hand to hold. Business people will benefit from advice, and professionals can expect a year of positive changes.

TAURUS Stability is important to Taureans and you may find yourself finding ways to secure yourself professionally, financially and emotionally. At work you continue to display reliability, honesty and diligence and an increase in income is revealed. Business owners may choose to expand their product line or consider new ventures. Healthwise all is well for the Taureans, recovery is on the cards for ailments and there may be a need for you to change your diet.

LIBRA

SCORPIO

Expect an action packed time. Relationships may go through temporary bouts of turbulence. And many changes are revealed in the professional and financial front. If there’s an increase in income, tthere could be a large expense soon after. Stay flexible. A troublemaker in the family may need a stern word. If you’re not ready for marriage then delays would be beneficial. Married Librans may have their share of differences but also some real joys up ahead. Children will make you proud. And a dream starts to take shape. Recovery is indicated if you’ve been ailing.

Success for the hardworking Scorpio. Reward, recognition, the promise of financial security, positions of leadership surround you. A change in job or career may re-ignite your passion for winning. Mentally alert and street smart, you may take advantage of a few opportunities. Married couples may rediscover the joy of companionship again. The only areas of caution include your health, which may need to be monitored. You may find yourself drawn to spiritual writings or a philosophy that makes sense to your soul. Meditative practices and alternative healing will bring a lot of inner peace.

Expect your labour in the past to bring results. If you’ve been thinking of studying again, the cards point to a year for great intellectual growth. You may get your dream job. Single Virgos may find love in a fellow student or a coworker. And if married, a third party may cause a little friction in the home front temporarily. If you’ve been thinking of planning a party, you may see quite a grand gathering of old friends and family. Don’t take things so seriously. Learn to relax and let go of what`s not working for you and realize if something is meant to happen, it will.

trumpet teller

AQUARIUS You can breathe a sigh of relief. Something finally comes to an end, and a new beginning is clear and so near. Family matters may take up a lot of your mind space, especially concerning an older woman. Professionally a new direction may open up for you. It could be a new career, industry or even a start-up. Whatever you do, will bring rewards in the long run. Be a little careful of who you trust though and take extra care of your belongings. A new investment proves lucky, and if you were planning to travel, expect short frequent trips. Financially a new avenue for earning income opens up, and if in business, you may choose to diversify and expand into new areas. Your decisions in the past will yield return. PISCES The cards foretell great inner growth for Piscean souls. Experiences and relationships leave you wiser. You may learn some valuable life lessons and be grateful you trusted your instincts. Personally you may find yourself drifting towards a hobby or a talent within, which you’d like to cultivate. Be patient at the workfront or with your new business. Ideas may take time to execute and clients may take time to respond. Doesn’t mean it’s a failure, it just means time to hang in there. Expect to travel at a minute’s notice and look forward to a memorable break that you will always treasure. Health appears pretty good and a new fitness regime won’t hurt either.

88 theindiantrumpet.com

CAPRICORN Solidity and security are your key words. Financial growth & a sense of achievement will propel you towards greater gains. At work, you may enjoy greater power. Students also benefit from energies. Family matters may get stressful at times. People may act unreasonable. Time to set boundaries and decide how much you can and cannot do for others. Things appear stable. If you were planning to travel, it will happen. You may also take up a cause or get involved in some charitable acitivity.

SAGITTARIUS A new chapter unfolds. Something comes to an end and something begins. You may relocate, change jobs, decide to get married or dissolve a partnership. Whatever happens may cause initial stress but eventually, everything will work out in your favour. Financially things appear stable, and if in business, you may think about hiring new people. Buying or selling property is also favoured in the months ahead. Family continues to be supportive. The health of a relative may be cause for concern. Stay in touch with those who have helped you. Healthwise, you may need to be careful mid-year but with proper treatment, there shouldn’t be anything to worry about.

Vimmi Puri is a New Delhi based tarot reader. A Tarot expert & Reiki master, she has been practicing Reiki healing for the last five years. She can be contacted at vimmi.puri@yahoo.com.


.89

theindiantrumpet.com

I love reading The Indian Trumpet over a cup of chai because an eye opening drink goes perfect with a mind opening read!

trumpet contest

WE HAD ASKED OUR READERS TO COMPLETE THE SENTENCE & OUR INBOX GOT FLOODED WITH COUNTLESS WARM & SWEET WORDS; AND WHILE ALL THE ANSWERS MADE US SMILE THE ONE BY INSIYA HUSAIN EZZY TOOK OUR HEART AWAY! CONGRATS!


the globe & the gully

The view of the dock, Alaska. The landscape, skies and the ships blend to create postcard picture.

CASCADING GLACIERS; WATERFALLS RUSHING INTO EMERALD LAKES; SNOW-CAPPED PEAKS, EVERGREEN FORESTS AND HISTORIC, MONUMENTAL LANDSCAPES: THE BEAUTY AND GRANDEUR OF ALASKA CAPTURED ON AN EIGHT-DAY TOUR.

90 theindiantrumpet.com

words BINDIYA FARSWANI


theindiantrumpet.com

.91

ICY ALASKA


What defines a holiday? Being wheelchair bound, it means meeting or even exceeding my limits. I seek out unique destinations, luxurious hotels, diverse cuisines and exciting activities. From start to finish, Alaska had all the ingredients and flexibility I look for and is now my favourite destination of the many I’ve visited.

the globe & the gully

Our journey began at Seattle Docks, where the Celebrity Infinity Cruise awaited us. Each forward step after immigration on the long path to the liner fired up my adrenaline. Uniformed staff met us warmly, serving refreshments the moment we stepped on board. The grand foyer was stunning, with its exquisite marble floors, onyx staircase and panoramic view elevators. We dashed to the Ocean Café, which resembled an exhibition of international cuisines. After a quick bite, we joined the carnival on the open deck, where I was in for a surprise. The entertainment organisers took me onto the dance floor and everyone surrounded me, dancing to ‘YMCA’! Shortly after the ship’s hooter sounded we raised a toast - ‘Farewell, Seattle’ - and embarked on our 8-day tour. My comfortable, wheelchair-accessible room had a balcony with a great view. Later in the evening everyone dressed up and we were guided to the Celebrity Theater, with its promise of sundown to sunrise entertainment (they kept us enthralled all week with high-energy performances). We took in a show then went exploring. At the world-class casino we tried our luck at Blackjack and the slot machines. Then we dined at The Main Restaurant, centrepiece of the Celebrity Infinity, with its incomparable selection of grandiose dishes. Day two started with breakfast at the Ocean Café, followed by more exploration. As my family relaxed in the jacuzzi, I clicked pictures and savoured delicacies from the poolside grill. After the relaxing day, everyone dressed up for the first formal night: professional photo shoots followed by Broadway shows and dinner. On day three, we awoke to views of icy Alaskan mountains, with freshwater streaming down to the ocean. Soon we arrived at Ketchikan, Alaska’s ‘first city’. Even though it was cold, with mild rain, it was lovely to be back on land after two days on board. While waiting for our first excursion cab, we roamed nearby streets and gift shops, taking snaps and finding out about the area.

92 theindiantrumpet.com

The cab took us on a beautiful scenic route, ending in a wobbling wooden pathway to a floatplane. Climbing aboard was quite an experience! Just one slip could have landed me in deep waters. Thankfully, staff and family were there to help me climb in safely. Once everyone was buckled up, with headphones on, we started the journey to Misty Fjords National Monument. Also known as the ‘Yosemite of the North’ Alaska’s second largest wilderness area was once completely covered with ice. Over the years, massive glacial movements and volcanic activity have carved out this pristine masterpiece. We thoroughly enjoyed the scenery: saltwater fjords edged by plunging cliffs, 3,000-6,000 feet high, snow-capped, mist-swathed peaks, tidewater estuaries, waterfalls cascading into freshwater lakes, and seemingly endless evergreen forests. On our way back, the pilot landed in the midst of a valley, on a rock formation in the crystal clear water. I enjoyed the incredible views from the plane as my family stepped out on the small patch of land. Our next stop was Juneau, the state capital. Named after prospector Joe Juneau, it’s nestled between Gastineau Channel and Mount Juneau. We were met with a splendid sight in the morning: natural ice formations, like sculptures, floating in the emerald ocean. Our liner’s narrow pathway took us to the magnificent Tracy Arm fjords. The path to the fjords had steep cliffs along much of its length, some covered with glaciers and lush trees. Intermittently, waterfalls plunged from the cliffs into the waters of the fjord below. Our guide, a friendly young girl, enthusiastically related details of the history of Juneau, glacier facts, and life in the city. The bus drove through downtown and then to the outskirts, home to the breathtaking Mendenhall Glacier. With trees behind us, and an enormous ice field in front, we saw the glacial valley ending in an icebergdotted lake.


Fjord, the most spectacular sceneries!

theindiantrumpet.com

.93


the globe & the gully

Having enjoyed the area’s beauty and solitude for an hour, we headed to Auk Bay to view humpback and orca whales, seals, and other wildlife. Our captains visit these waters regularly and are knowledgeable about the whales’ social circles. The boat would draw to a halt and we’d hear a pod of whales communicating. We learnt that they were ‘bubblenet fishing’. After these energising ‘up close and personal’ encounters we headed back to the liner. Next stop was Skagway, a major ‘gold rush’ attraction, for a very informative tour. We visited the original Klondike Trail of 1898, which pays tribute to all the prospectors who passed that way, and the Summit of White Pass, part of the US / Canadian border. Unfortunately, the Glacier Discovery tour, by helicopter, wasn’t suitable for the disabled, but my family captured the fantastic adventure on camera for me and I felt as if I’d been there. The helicopter had soared high over the historic Skagway waterfront and on to remote glaciers and

94 theindiantrumpet.com

The pilot landed in the midst of a valley, on a rock formation in the crystal clear water. the Skagway ice fields. The awe-inspiring glaciers were visible in all their various stages: advancing, retreating, cascading and floating. Throughout the cruise, I noticed that staff sang ‘Happy Birthday’ for those celebrating their special day, and everyone would follow suit. I wished I’d had a birthday too. On our last night, my sister-inlaw arranged the most wonderful surprise for me: a candlelit chocolate cake. Everyone at the restaurant serenaded me: my fondest wish come true. We awoke the next morning in the beautiful city of Victoria, a temperate seaside enclave and British Columbia’s third largest island. The city exudes old world charm: we were amused to see horses apparently out numbering cars on the streets. We took a tour in one of the horse drawn carriages - the best way to see the place - past upscale neighbourhoods, manicured lawns, blooming gardens and coastal views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. We

Brown bear, an inhabitant of coastal Alaska


Ketchikan harbour, Ketchikan is also known as Alaska’s “first city”

GETTING THERE

also saw the Olympic Mountains, China Town and the Inner Harbour, centrepiece of Victoria, with its Royal British Columbia Museum, street performers, parliament buildings and luxurious Fairmont Empress Hotel. As the sun was setting, and the streetlights switched on, we saw how this one-time outpost of empire still retains much of its colonial splendour. Back on the ship, we retired to our room balconies to admire the huge full moon. In just a few hours we’d be hitting the Seattle Docks once again. The thought of leaving my ‘home on the waves’, and this truly remarkable odyssey, disheartened me. The next morning, bell boys picked up our bags and we said our goodbyes to our family-at-sea. As we disembarked, I was already reminiscing, and at the door of our taxi turned around one last time to take a final look at the great ship. I promised myself I’d be back soon.

By air/by road Seattle is well connected and serviced by many airlines. It’s best to land one day before a cruise departs. There are quite a few hotels near the Celebrity Infinity pier. Best time to visit The weather is perfect during June-July.

Recommended activities ‘A Misty Fjords Floatplane Adventure’ in Ketchikan, a visit to the Mendenhall Glacier, whale-watching in Juneau, a drive to the Summit of White Pass, a helicopter ride over the Skagway Ice Fields and a city tour of Victoria.

.95

theindiantrumpet.com

Bindiya Farswani is driven by wanderlust and her only motto: ‘Carpe Diem’ (‘Seize the day’). Of Indian origin, but raised in Dubai, she’s optimistic, philosophical, creative and adventurous. Having cerebral palsy, she attended Dubai Center for Special Needs School, pursuing further education to match her excelling capabilities via a home schooling program from Keystone National High School, USA. She believes words aren’t adequate to express the magnificence of her charismatic persona and unique, kaleidoscopic life.


horn OK please

We’re sure that the many chai stalls dotting the country have witnessed revolutions taking shape!

96 theindiantrumpet.com


pk;

dh nqdku

A MOBILE THELLA WITH A RUSTY STOVE, AN ALUMINIUM PAN, SPICES FOR CHAI AND JARS OF RUSKS: IT’S THE VEHICLE THAT TRAVELS THROUGH ALL OUR LIVES. FROM LOVE STORIES TO CREATIVE AD CAMPAIGNS, FROM COLLEGE GOSSIP TO MIDNIGHT BIRTHDAY TREATS, FROM OFFICE POLITICS TO THE PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE ITSELF: THE CHAI KI DUKAAN HAS SEEN IT ALL. words AANANDIKA SOOD images ASHISH LANGADE theindiantrumpet.com

.97


horn OK please

Masala chai...cutting chai... kadak chai... garam chai... chai malaai maar ke! You’re familiar with these sounds, aren’t you? You’ve heard them on childhood train journeys to the nanihaal (maternal grandparents’ home) or escapades to the mountains, saving yourself from sweltering summer heat. They’re the chants of tea sellers or chaiwallahs, emanating from stalls that dot the streets of urban and rural India. This beckoning is a charm, a talisman, bearing witness to our formative years. Today, India is one of the largest tea producers in the world. Chai has been our major global contribution. What’s more, a phenomenal 70% of output is consumed within the country. From its 18th century medicinal use, tea has journeyed a long way, becoming integral to our lives. Tea plantations were started by the British in the 1830s mainly for export to the UK. Tea culture as we know it today didn’t exist until the early 1900s when British tea associations made efforts to popularise it in India, giving rise to the great chai stall. The tea associations started their campaign by setting up stalls in various cities. They encouraged tea plantation employees, then workers almost everywhere else - in factories and huge households - to take tea breaks. The railways brought more stalls, which gained in popularity as the beverage did. And voila! Chai stalls flourished and tea became ‘the’ drink. Credit for introducing milk and sugar also goes to the British who had an aversion to tea’s slightly bitter taste. They likewise sweetened cocoa, impacting chocolate: that, too, began as a

98 theindiantrumpet.com

The modern machinery offering cups of tea with a click of a button can never be a threat to the good ol’ chai served at thellas!

bitter product. This, my friends, is the story of our humble tea stalls, and I bet my hard earned money that you’ve all had an affair with one, knowingly or otherwise, during your college and work years. Today no work area or office building worth its salt exists without a tea vendor nearby. The mobile thella, though becoming a thing of the past, is what first springs to mind when one pictures a stall. These rickety wooden vehicles generally housed a stove, an

aluminium pan and the ingredients required for making tea, including cardamom, cloves and cinnamon. Masala chai... ahh... the aroma! Other accompaniments might be found on the moving carts, adding extra temptation: shiny glass jars filled with macaroons, atta cookies, mathri, and the odd namkeen.

Thellas have given way to concrete structures. Ask any hip college gang or the most agile office workers: the chai stall - sacrosanct space


with his ketli. I’ve bonded closely with two stalls at different times in my life. These fond associations, tied to memories of friendship and struggle, stem from the fact that I was miles away from the comforts of home and family. The stalls became literal sources of my bread and butter, as well as venues for memorable conversations, deep philosophical discussions and the exchange of precious dreams. One, of course, was part of the college canteen at GCG (Government College for Girls), Sector 11 in Chandigarh, where a modest white tea cup could fetch you warmth and comfort for a mere `2. I would sit, spin poems and visualise the life awaiting me. The other was located in a quaint gully in New Delhi’s Gole Market. A toothless man owned the place. Here, good chat, advice and delicious buttered buns were always available. Three of us, friends, starting out in the TV industry would make our way to the stall at day’s end to talk shoots, schedules and office gossip.

- is elementary to their existence and the birth of big ideas. I often think that many stalls must have witnessed revolutions taking shape. Others would relate, if they could, love stories that would leave you

mushy inside like buttered toast dipped in hot tea. Avid travellers such as bikers might tell you tales of chai stall hospitality or the warm feeling of holding a glass of hot tea bought from a vendor doing rounds

Some would say that chai stalls have been usurped by vending machines but I would argue that chai stall charm remains unbeatable. Anyone addicted to the culture would hardly ever convert to modern machinery. Chai stalls remain inseparable from the days and times of our lives.

Aanandika Sood aspires to be the rolling stone that gathers much moss. After 8 years of writing columns, editing and honing her PR skills, she’s now playing the freelancer and mommie. She lives in Kolkata and blogs at aanandika.blogspot.in on anything that stimulates her mind and merits comment.

.99

theindiantrumpet.com

Ashish Langade fell in love with photography 6 years back and found it a passion with infinite learning opportunities. It’s led him to explore the world around him through the lens. Photography for him is a play of light, bringing out dramatic effects and beauty. He can be reached at ashishlangade@gmail.com.


kehwa,

the green elixir AROMA OF AN ERA GONE BY: FOR THOSE WISHING TO SMELL AND TASTE THE NOSTALGIA, KASHMIR’S GREENISH-GOLD BEVERAGE IS BEST ENJOYED THE TRADITIONAL WAY. words PUJA RAINA MAHALDAR

our shabdkosh

If I ever have a chance to return to my native land the earthly paradise of Kashmir - here’s the first thing I’d do. Catch hold of a samovar, unfurl the famous green elixir Kehwa, let the beverage infuse and breathe in. The delicate, cinnamon-laden aroma and rich flavour would take me back to the days when every Kashmiri household had a samovar, (at times even two) with Kehwa brewing continually, and a bunch of khos, neatly lined up to serve the lovely beverage. Kashmir is steeped in tea culture - even though the state produces none of its own - and Kehwa is the ‘Queen of Teas’. Known as ‘Mogil Chay’ in local dialect, this greenish-golden beverage is made using green tea leaves, boiled with cardamom, cinnamon bark and saffron strands, topped with almonds and served with sugar. Kashmiri Muslims prepare Kehwa without the infusion of tea leaves, a beverage known locally as ‘Kong Kehwa’. Traditionally, Kehwa was made in samovars traditional brass kettles whose central cavity housed a ‘fire container’ fed with live coals to keep the surrounding liquid-filled space brewing and hot. It

100 theindiantrumpet.com

was served in khos - tiny, shallow brass cups - and ‘chini pyales’ - beautifully crafted bone china dishes. The urban lifestyles of those no longer resident in Kashmir have hit the beverage hard and Kewha is now produced and served in everyday pans and vessels. Kehwa is best enjoyed with classic baked Kashmiri delicacies such as Katlam, Lvaas, Telvor Ghav Chot, Khatai and Kulche. There are different views as to how Kehwa became a quintessential part of the region’s lifestyle. Most Kashmiris deem this comforting drink as intrinsic to the state since time immemorial. Others believe it dates back to the era of Mughal rule, hence the local name. Another sect of scholars traces Kehwa’s origins to the Yarkand Valley in Xinjiang, asserting that it became popular in the region under Kushan rule. Kehwa is also consumed heavily in Afghanistan as well as a few parts of northern Pakistan and Central Asia. The Kashmiri diaspora has spread the popularity of this distinctively aromatic drink around the globe. Speckled Kehwa carries the nip of the lost homeland; for aficionados accustomed to its fragrance and taste, the beverage offers seeds of solace.


the charismatic Kehwa Dalcheen Kehwa (Cinnamon Kehwa): The most widely used brew. Tea leaves are boiled with water, cinnamon and cardamom, and the result is topped with finely slivered almonds.

Noon Chai / Sheer Chai: The region’s famous ‘Pink Tea’. Baking soda is added to the tea leaves; they’re boiled thoroughly until a pink froth emerges. Milk and cardamom complete the brew, served with a layer of fresh cream. Doud Chai: Brewed for a shorter time like Dalcheen Kehwa but with milk and salt, and served with a dash of cardamom and cinnamon. This type of Kehwa is usually taken by the infirm or elderly at breakfast and teatime to keep their digestive systems fit. Zafran Kehwa (Saffron Tea): Made in Kashmiri Muslim households, without the use of tea leaves, this kind of Kehwa is usually served in tourist guesthouses and shikaras. It’s brewed with saffron strands and sugar and served with finely chopped almonds. Damm Tueth: Kehwa brewed with tealeaves and a squeeze of lemon. Besides the above, black pepper and adrak Kehwa is ideal for sore throats. (The views expressed by the writer are hers/ his & don’t reflect that of the editor or the publication. We regret factual errors, if any.)

.101

theindiantrumpet.com

Puja Raina Mahaldar hails from the land of mystic beauty, Kashmir. When she was growing up, she surrounded herself with her father’s medical journals and huge collection of books. She loved to flip through one of her dad’s favourite books in particular, O Jerusalem! Known as a chatter box amongst her friends and family, these days she is busy playing mommy to her two boys, 5 and two-months old. When not running after them, she can be found freelancing for magazines, newspapers, portals and more.


last word

Amit Gupta plays the quintessential corporate guy, but at heart he’s a poet, writing secretly for a decade and longing for places where all horizons meet. At the moment he’s busy penning lyrics for a friend who’s putting them to music, and donning the hat of an auteur, with three plays under his belt. He loves freezing time with his camera and dabbles with the piano too. He dreams of the day when he can take recitals of his work on tour around the globe.

102 theindiantrumpet.com


To order your personal & bulk print copies of �e Indian Trumpet magazine write to us at

theindiantrumpet@gmail.com


Profile for The Indian Trumpet

March-April 2014  

Over a cup of chai: The Indian Trumpet's tea edition. Chai is a sensitive & sweet subject for us Indians; it’s not a beverage but an emotion...

March-April 2014  

Over a cup of chai: The Indian Trumpet's tea edition. Chai is a sensitive & sweet subject for us Indians; it’s not a beverage but an emotion...

Advertisement