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Showing posts from December, 2007

The Leela, Kovalam, Trivandrum

Rediscovering Kovalam (PhotographsbyAvranIttyipe)

The Leela undoubtedly has the best view in Kovalam. Perched prettily on a cliff it has restaurants (for that view with the bite) littered along the steep path down to the beach.SkyBarontheway to the beach
The Sky Bar on the slope is breaaaaaaath taking . The hidden infinity pool tucked into the side of the cliff and The Tides restaurant bang on the beach are the big attractions. Forget the food. It is the view sweet that’s going to make you loosen your purse strings mighty quick.
If you ask me the buffet is nothing to write home about. I will begin with the dessert coz it is the most memorable of the whole meal. There is a wide range but I loved the plain vanilla ice cream and the fruit crumble.The main course: For the sake of eating I kind of twirled my fork through the plate, investigating and dwelling for a considerable time on a surprise- the apple pickle, the safe Russian salad and a delectable rice. Rs 700 plus taxes per head for …

Kochi's Housing Sector

Youhave a choice here: the Highs or theLows.

A Strike To Behold

Police readytostrikeagainstthe striking public. A Political party had organised a strike to protest against the persistent price rise of commodities in Kerala.

Syrian Christian Food: Nazarani Tharavad, Pala

Nazarani Tharavad, Pala

It is in the geography of drenched greens and coconut palms where the persistent peal of the thundering rains wakes up every dormant seed and jerks it into a tangled mass of leafscape. We are in the Nazarani Tharavad in Pala, a rubber town in central Travancore. The St.Thomas Church, Pala
The Nazaranis(Syrian Christians) have been around a long time in Kerala. Popular theory suggests Christianity was well established here, at least three centuries before it wore the official robes of a religion in Europe.
The rulers of ancient Malabar gave the Christian community the grant of privileges perhaps for their social and economical eminence and the traces of those privileges have survived to this very day. Some of the privileges granted to them were curious, like the light by day (Yes, the light by day had to be granted and was an exclusive privilege!), the use of the umbrella, the spreading cloth to walk upon, doubling up the end of the banana leaf which serve as a pla…

Buffet Weekends at Casino Hotel, Cochin

(Photographs by Avran Ittyipe)

I abhor a buffet. Usually. The endless spread of food and decorations are deviously designed to deceive the eye more than satisfy our gastronomic fantasies. And the process of selecting can be tedious too. Every dish is nibbled at and then without a single thought the entire plate load of food is left to be cleared away, so I can then resume trying the remaining array of dishes. And it is on the third round that I realize there is only one dish that is worth eating or it is better to simply stick with curd rice and pickles. Well, in other words the badly tossed up dishes that pass for most buffets can be tiresomely boring. Forget the wedding arrangements. It is predictably worse when the plate is so godam heavy, the queues long, the seating arrangements are just anywhere you please and your worries about saving your beautiful sari from curry stains are endless; needless to say all this makes the buffet even more unappetizing.
So one Saturday night, when t…

In Search Of A Village

(Photographs By Minu Ittyipe)
For quite a while, an unknown malady has raged through my bones and clogged my throat. Any doctor worth his stet would have dismissed it as the evils of excessive work, but that was not the case with me coz for a long time now I have not wholly committed myself to the masochistic pleasures of wearing myself thin. And yet the fever raged on. After much medication I arrived at a diagnosis: it was the habitat, the caged atmosphere that drove me to the stage of rancid comatose. I had to get out of the urban confines and find a bit of breath air. Fresh air. Fast.So I set out in search of a village, where I can spot a cow instead of the snorting vehicles or I could get to hear a hen announcing that she has laid a nice warm egg. When was the last time you heard a delighted clucking of the hen? Perhaps, you’ve never heard that one before. It’s the kind of music you will not hear in the city. And that is an urban fact. In the urbanscape, I find that I forget to lis…