She Reads South Asia


Thursday, August 31, 2006

Indian Curry for Headaches?

A friend of mine, will call him "Raj", has been having headaches lately and I've been trying to find him a good natural cure. Since he's already Indian, I'm sure he'll appreciate this post and hopefully it will help. I'll be trying it myself, but please feel free to let me know what you think and if it's worked for you.

I just came across this article about using Indian Curry for Headaches. Thanks to Lotus who had the link to Hindu Mommy. Of course I have to thank Bhaswati who had the link to my blog where Lotus found me in the first place. Thanks to all three of you.

Indian Idol

Have you seen Indian Idol?

If you haven't check it out today! If you have, relive the moments. It was a very close call between Karunya (1st pic) and Sandeep Acharya (2nd pic) but Sandeep went home the winner of Indian Idol II.

See Sandeep on Sabras Radio too.

The first series Indian Idol I winner was Abhijit Sawant.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The Toronto International Film Festival

The Toronto International Film Festival(TIFF) presents one of the world’s largest showcases of Canadian film. The Festival has also helped launch the careers of prominent filmmakers such as Deepa Mehta. Recent past premieres include WATER.

The TIFF runs from September 7 to September 16, 2006. Twenty-three screens in downtown Toronto, offer a broad spectrum of theatre-going experiences using venues that combine elegance with state-of-the-art facilities.

The Festival is now in its 12th year at Roy Thomson Hall for Gala Presentations, including Opening Night and Closing Night.

The VISA Screening Room, located at the Elgin Theatre, once again hosts Special Presentations, among other screenings.

Returning cinemas in the Festival Village include: Alliance Atlantis Cumberland Cinemas; Cineplex Odeon Varsity Cinemas; Famous Players Paramount Theatre; Isabel Bader Theatre; The National Film Board Mediatheque; Royal Ontario Museum Theatre; and Ryerson Theatre.

The following Indian cinema films will be presented:

Gala Presentation at Roy Thomson Hall
Sunday September 10th at 1:30
NEVER SAY GOODBYE (Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna)
Director: Karan Johar

NEVER SAY GOODBYE is an irresistibly entertaining love story. An ideal choice for our first ever Bollywood gala, it’s filled with huge stars, sweeping romance, comedy, heartache and dazzling musical numbers – all in one epic package. Dev (Shah Rukh Khan) is a New York-based soccer player married to hotshot magazine editor Rhea (Preity Zinta). They appear to be the picture of success and happiness. So do Rishi (Abhishek Bachchan) and Maya (Rani Mukherji), although Maya’s inability to bear children does put some strain on the marriage. However, a chance meeting between Maya and Dev sets these two couples on a collision course.

For one billion fans in India to the South Asian diaspora communities in England, U.S. and Canada, to devoted fans in the Middle East, Russia and beyond, three-hour Hindi epics with extravagant musical numbers are the stuff dreams are made of. In recognition of this hugely popular genre, Mavericks presents THE MAKING OF A BOLLYWOOD BLOCKBUSTER, an event for Bollywood lovers and newcomers alike. From the astonishing all-star line-up of Indian film talent from NEVER SAY GOODBYE (which will screen as a Gala Presentation at this year's Festival), director Karan Johar, and actors Shah Rukh Khan, Rani Mukherji, and Amitabh Bachchan will engage in a lively discussion about the huge popularity of Bollywood. The discussion is moderated by writer Suketu Mehta, whose non-fiction book about the film capital of Mumbai, Maximum City, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.

Mavericks presentations are held at the Elgin and Isabel Bader Theatres.

VISA Screening Room at the Elgin Theatre
Wednesday September 13th at 3:00 PM
Director: Mira Nair

VISA Screening Room at the Elgin Theatre
Friday September 15th at 6:00 PM
Director: Kabir Khan

Special Presentations


Chitra Palekar's ‘A Grave-keeper’s Tale’
Rajnesh Domalpalli's ‘Vanaja’

Real to Reel

Haobam Paban Kumar's 'Cry in the dark’

Monday, August 28, 2006

Indian Cinema and TIFF

The inception of Indian Cinema (a.k.a. Bollywood) came in 1913, when the father of the Indian film industry Dhundiraj Govind (Dadasaheb) Phalke releases the first feature length film Raja Saratchandra (King Harishchandra). The next year he showed that film and two others, Mohini Bhasmasur and Satyavan Savitri (all black and white silent films) in London, thus taking them abroad to the international world.

The Toronto International Film Festival, (originally known as “The Festivals of Festivals”) considered to be one of the top film festivals in the world (and the largest attendance-wise) found its beginnings in 1976.

More than 1200 movies in at least ten regional languages are made and released each year in India. Many of which have found themselves being presented in the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). This year is no different. The 31st Toronto International Film Festival is running from September 7 to 16, 2006 and Indian Cinema will be once again featured.

The Gala Presentation will be none other than Karan Johar’s Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna(Never Say Goodbye). It will take place at Roy Thomson Hall on Sunday September 10th at 1:30.

The screening of Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna will also a thrilling experience for Shah Rukh Khan who stars in the lead role as Dev . In 2001 his production Asoka, was supposed to be part of the Contemporary World Cinema premiere showing at TIFF. Unfortunately, the print of the film was lost in transit from New York to Toronto on 9/11. (Listing appeared as Asoka {Sun} 5pm Varsity 4 & 5)

In a 2006 TIFF press release Festival Co-Director Noah Cowan spoke about the world premieres reflecting the strength and range of contemporary Indian cinema.

"India is a nation of different cultures and languages, which makes its cinema diverse, dynamic and exciting. Films in Hindi, Marathi, Telugu and Manipuri will be here, along with several major world premieres from talented new filmmakers. These four films demonstrate the impressive range of Indian cinema, and we at the Festival are thrilled to be a part of its future."

Those four films will pe presented as follows:

The VISA Screening Room at the Elgin Theatre hosts the world premiere of Kabir Khan’s Kabul Express on Friday September 15th at 6:00 PM.

Special Presentation in Discovery include, A Grave-keeper’s Tale by Chitra Palekar and Vanaja by Rajnesh Domalpalli.

In Real to Reel, the special presentation will be Cry in the Dark by Haobam Paban Kumar.

What about in years past? Has Indian cinema been represented in TIFF? Here are some of the film listings from previous years that have appeared at TIFF.

2005 Deepa Mehta’s Water, S. Bose’s Amu , A. Ahluwalia’s John and Jane, B. Dasgupta’s Memories in the Mist

2004 Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s Chased by Dreams, Bharatbala’s Hari Om,

2003 Rituparno Ghosh's Chokher Bali, A Passion Play

2002 Buddhadeb Dasgupta's A Tale of a Naughty Girl (Mondo Meyer Upakhyan), Mani Ratnam’s A Peck on the Cheek (Kannathil Muthamittal), Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s Shadow Kill (Nizhalkkuthu)and a program called A Bow to Bollywood . . . And Beyond

2001 Digvijay Singh’s Maya, Ashutosh Gowariker’s Lagaan, Murali Nair’s Pattiyude Divasam (A Dog’s Day), - Scheduled but was not presented (see above) Santosh Sivan’s Asoka,

2000 Kamal Haasan’s Hey! Ram, Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s The Wrestlers, Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s Kalamandalam Gopi,

1999 Pankaj Butalia’s Shadows in the Dark (Karvaan), Santosh Sivan’s Malli, Murali Nair’s The tragedy of an Indian Farmer (Short- 6 min)

1998 Kaizad Gustad’s Bombay Boys, Santosh Sivan’s Theeviravaathi (The Terrorist), Satyajit Ray’s Charulata, Deepa Mehta’s Earth

1997 Mani Ratnam’s Iruvar (The Duo)

1996 Deepa Mehta’s Fire

1994 A retrospective of Mani Ratnam’s Tamil films was shown {Nayakan (Hero), Mouna Ragam: Alaipayuthey (Silent Symphony), Roja (Rose) and Thiruda, Thiruda (Thief, Thief)} along with a slew of commercial Indian movies with subtitles over a ten day span as part of “India NOW!”

I have not been able to find any other listings or information for Indian Cinema appearing in 1995 or prior to 1994. So, if anyone has any accurate information pertaining to this, please let me know. This way I can finish creating this listing.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Suketu Mehta at TIFF

Suketu Mehta, whose non-fiction book about the film capital of Mumbai, 'Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found', was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2005 and won the Kiriyama Prize.

He will be at TIFF this year to host the panel of Bollywood celebrities in a discussion on the 'Making of a Bollywood Blockbuster' on Sunday, September 10 - 5:00 PM at The ISABEL BADER THEATRE.

Writer Suketu Mehta (whose non-fiction book about the film capital of Mumbai, Maximum City, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize) will moderate a panel of Bollywood stars — Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan and Rani Mukherji — as they join director Karan Johar to engage in a lively discussion about the huge popularity of Bollywood.

Jhumpa Lahiri whose Pulitzer Prize novel 'The Namesake', which has been transformed into a film by Mira Nair and is showcasing at TIFF this year, had this to say about Mehta and 'Maximum City'.

"Mehta writes with a Victorian novelist's genius for character, detail, and incident, but his voice is utterly modern. Like its subject, this is a sprawling banquet of a book, one of the most intimate and moving portraits of a place I have read."

National Geographic surprised the world with its introduction to Bollywood. Mr. Mehta contributed to that superb coverage with his article Welcome to Bollywood.

The New York Times published his article Bollywood Confidential

Mehta also cowrote 'Mission Kashmir', a Bollywood movie.

Friday, August 25, 2006

TIFF's past premieres of Indian cinema films

I mentioned in a previous post about TIFF's past premieres included Deepa Mehta's 'WATER'.

Interestingly, this Indian cinema film has still not been released in India itself because of the controversial subject matter, although back in April it was supposedly given the ok to do so. The film starring John Abraham has been cleared by the Indian censor board with a UA certificate and surprisingly, without a single cut.

You can read of the article by Sudhir Daruwala on the opening of 'Water' at the Toronto International film festival in 2005.

Since then, 'Water' has won the Golden Kinnaree award for best film at the Bangkok Film Festival and three of the nine Genie Awards that it was nominated for, along with the Valladolid International Film Festival Youth Jury Award and two Vancouver Film Critics Circle Awards - Best Actress - Canadian Film (Lisa Ray) and Best Director - Canadian Film (Deepa Mehta).

Watch the trailers of 'Water'.

TIFF World Premieres Reflect The Strength And Range Of Contemporary Indian Cinema

TIFF Press Release

"India is a nation of different cultures and languages, which makes its cinema diverse, dynamic and exciting," says Noah Cowan, Festival Co-Director. "Films in Hindi, Marathi, Telugu and Manipuri will be here, along with several major world premieres from talented new filmmakers. These four films demonstrate the impressive range of Indian cinema, and we at the Festival are thrilled to be a part of its future."

To read the rest of the release, which has information on the four films, please go here.

Making Paneer

Paneer (Cottage Cheese)

From Iena Kashyap


1 litre milk
lemon juice or vinegar


1. Bring milk to a boil. Add lemon juice or vinegar. Add salt.

2. Boil for 5 minutes. Milk will curdle. Milk solids (cottage cheeese or paneer) will float over the whey. Using a fine strainer, drain the whey.*

3. Put the cottage cheese in a muslin cloth, squeeze out excess liquid and put a heavy weight over it. Leave for 1-2 hrs till a solid cheese block is formed. Cut into cubes as required. This will yield about 225g paneer.

*What you have at this point is curds and whey. Sound familiar? It's what Little Miss Muffet (in the nursery rhyme)was eating when the spider scared her away (whey is the liquid portion and curds are the milk solids).

Fried paneer cubes are a great addition to rice or peas. Another popular item is to scramble this -- it can look like scrambled eggs and you can fool your meat-eater friends.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

More Indian Recipes per request

Here you go Nancy!

Gajar Halwa - Carrot dessert made with milk and sugar
Recipe by Cuisine Cuisine

1 pound or 6 medium Carrots, scrapped and grated
4 cups Milk, whole or 2%
3/4 th cup Heavy cream
3/4th cup Sugar
6 tablespoons Almonds, ground
1/2 teaspoon Cardamom powder
3 tablespoons Pistachio nuts, coarsely crushed
3 tablespoons Ghee (clarified butter), (optional )

1. Put the grated carrots, milk and heavy cream into a deep, large, heavy saucepan. Bring it to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to moderate and cook, stirring constantly until the mixture has reduced to about half its original volume and is thick enough to coat a spoon heavily.

2. Stir in the sugar and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add the almonds and the ghee and stir for a few minutes more.

3. The "halwa "is done when the mixture is thick enough to draw from the sides and bottom of the pan in a solid mass.

4. Remove the pan and stir in the cardamom. Remove the "halwa "into a decorative serving dish.

5. Decorate the top with the crushed pistachio nuts. Serve warm or at room temperature.

In India, it is very popular to serve warm "gajar halwa" with vanilla ice cream.

Saag Paneer

Recipe By : Shiva Indian Restaurant - Houston, Texas
Serving Size : 4

1 Lg Onion
6 Cloves garlic
1 Oz Fresh ginger
1 Lb Frozen spinach, thawed
1 C Plain yogurt
4 Oz Buttermilk
2 Ts Red chili powder
2 Ts Garam masala
1 C Half and half
6 Oz Paneer, cubed
Salt to taste

Grind the onion, garlic, and ginger into a fine paste. In a medium
saucepan, combine the paste, spinach, yogurt, buttermilk, chili
powder, and garam masala. Simmer at medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes.
Mash the ingredients with a potato masher. Add the half and half. Simmer
until the mixture has a creamy consistency, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the
cheese, simmer 5 minutes. Season with salt. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Sharon's Notes: I didn't bother to grind the onion, garlic & ginger
into a paste. I sauteed them in a little oil before adding the spinach,
etc. I also browned the paneer cubes in a little oil. I substituted
whole milk for the half & half.

Win 'Don' Memorabilia!

The countdown is on to the release of Shah Rukh Khan's 'Don' - October 20th!

To win 'Don' memorabilia - log into Sabras Radio and enter the competition! They will also be having exclusive interviews and other events for the extravaganza tied in with UTV.


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

New Article on Associated Content

As some of my visitors already know, I write articles for Associated Content. My newest article is about my trip with three friends to "Little India" in New Jersey. If you would like to read the entire story of our great adventure, please go here.

If you would like to write for Associated Content and get paid, please click on the orange box in the side bar.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Recipes per request

Due to the last post, I have received requests for some Indian food recipes. So starting with the ones mentioned in the AW Chain post, here we go. For more delicious Indian recipes, please go to my favorite restaurant Kabob and Curry

Chicken Tikka Masala
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Part A:

2 lbs. boneless chicken breast
1/4 cup yogurt
3 t. minced ginger
3 t. crushed garlic
1/4 t. white pepper
1/4 t. cumin powder
1/4 t. mace
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. green cardamom powder
1/4 t. chili powder
1/4 t. turmeric
3 T. lemon juice
4 T. vegetable oil
Melted margarine (for basting)

Part B:
5 oz. tomato paste
10 oz. tomato puree
2 lbs. tomatoes, chopped
2 t. ginger paste
2 t. garlic paste
2 t. green chilies
1 T. red chili powder
2 t. cloves
8 green cardamoms
salt to taste
3 T. butter
2/3 cup cream
1 t. fenugreek
2 t. ginger, julienned
honey to taste

Whisk all of the ingredients in Part A together in a large bowl. Add the chicken breast, cut into 2 inch cubes. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Bake the chicken for 8 minutes, basting with margarine twice. Drain excess marinade and bake for another 2 minutes.
While doing this, make the sauce in Part B. Deseed and chop green chilies. Put tomatoes, tomato paste and tomato puree in a pot and add approximately 4-1/4 cups of water. Add ginger and garlic paste, green chilies, red chili powder, cloves, cardamoms, and salt. Cook over low heat until reduced to a thick sauce. Strain through a strainer and bring to a boil. Add butter and cream. Stir. If the sauce tastes sour, add honey to taste. Add fenugreek and ginger juliennes, stir, and serve with the chicken.

Vegetable Pakoras
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1 lb. mixed vegetables (potatoes, onions, eggplants, cauliflower)
4 oz. besan
1 t. salt
½ t. chili powder
Pinch baking soda
¾ t. ajwain
1 t. mango powder
¼ c. – ½ c. of water
vegetable oil for deep-frying

Method of preparation

Peel and slice potatoes, onions and eggplants into 1/3 inch thick round slices. Soak the potato and eggplant slices in water until ready to use. Cut cauliflower into small florets. Mix besan, salt, chili powder, baking soda, ajwain, mango powder and water and beat into a smooth batter of a thick, coating consistency.
Heat the oil in a deep fat fryer or work. When the oil is very hot, reduce heat to medium. Dip a few slices of the vegetables into the batter to coat them completely, and then deep-fry them, turning them once. Cook evenly until they are golden-brown or both sides. Remove oil and drain on paper towels. Serve with mint or sweet chutney.

Sweet Lassi with Rosewater and Cardamom
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Serves 2 to 3
2 cups plain organic yogurt, either low fat or whole milk
1/2 cup cold water
1/4 cup organic cane sugar
2 tsp rosewater
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
6 ice cubes

Combine the yogurt with the water, sugar, rosewater, and cardamom in a blender. Blend until smooth. Add the ice cubes and blend until they are completely incorporated.

(I like to add crushed pinapple to the mix. You can also add mango or another fruit)

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1 litre milk
1/4 cup rice, washed and soaked for 30 minutes.
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. cardamom powder
10-15 strands saffron, crushed, soaked in 1 tsp. warm milk
10 almonds
10 unsalted pistachios

Crush almonds, pistachios coarsely, keep aside.
Boil rice in plenty of water till half done.
Drain, spread on a plate, to cool grains.
Heat milk, bring to a boil.
Add rice, stirring continuously, till boiling resumes.
Simmer, stirring occasionally, to keep rice from sticking to bottom.
Allow rice to cook fully, but not get mushy.
Add sugar, cardamom, saffron, almonds and pistachios.
Stir, simmer for 2 minutes, serve piping hot.

Making time: 30 minutes
Makes: 5 servings
Shelflife: 1 day

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Indian Stuff

Well kindhearted Wendy has handed me the AW Chain baton and I've got my running shoes on, so let's get running with her thoughts on "stuff".

I didn't really want to title this post Indian "stuff", as somehow it makes it sound impersonal and that's not how I feel about all the Indian treasures I've bought over the last few years.

Without giving you a listing of all of them, which would seem impersonal, I'll try to describe them in their settings within my apartment in the form of a story. I'll put the meanings of any unknown items at the end for you.

Priya returned home from work, climbed the three flights of stairs and left her sandals in the entryway before entering her little apartment. The one good thing about her upstairs abode was the three windows in the first room always had a nice breeze flowing through. Sometimes the breeze was so intense though that her long, cotton, navy blue curtains with the gold design across the top had freed themselves from the gold tasseled tiebacks, which sought to retain them.

She fluffed the blue and green cushions on the couch on her way to the kitchen for the needed utensils to consume the chicken tikka masala, basmati rice, pakoras and naan that she had picked up from Kabob and Curry. The restaurant owner always knew to add a sweet lassi to the order before she even asked. Too tired to use one of her several Indian cookbooks and actually cook tonight, takeout was the answer.

Coming back into the living room, Priya flopped down to eat and finish reading Sharon Mass’ “Speech of Angels” for the second time. She still had several other books with decorative bookmarks in them, waiting to be “finished” again. Thankfully, she had completed the editing for Sattar Memon’s “The Ashram” and sent it for printing earlier in the day. Tonight’s book club discussion was on “The Untouchables” by Narendra Jadhav. It was going to be an emotional one for sure. When she returned home, she’d have the kheer she made the night before as a snack.

Now it was time to get ready for the meeting, or so she thought. Seema called to tell her that it was cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances. Actually, Priya was kind of relieved as she was so tired and just wanted to relax and watch one of her many Bollywood films. Would it be one of Shah Rukh Khan’s, as she had all but one of his (besides the one that hadn’t been released yet of course) or maybe one of Amitabh Bachchan’s (‘Black’ or ‘Baghban’)? There would be time to decide later, right now she wanted to take a shower and change into a more comfortable salwar kameez.

All the rooms were soon filled with the soft sounds of classical music and the smell of sandalwood and chamomile, from the incense and the bath products she used in the palm tree decorated bathroom. In the living room the peacock feathers standing in the flowered, brass vase next to the elephant decorated incense box, swayed in the breeze. Looking at them, Priya noticed that the battery in the clock/candle holder combination had stopped working. She replace it and dusted off the matching picture holder, which held her only autographed photo of Shah Rukh that he had sent her two years before. “Might as well dust off the rest of the bookshelf (the top of which was filled with candles and other trinkets)”, she said to no one other than herself.

A soft rain started to fall straight down, so there was no need to shut the windows yet. Instead, Priya opened one of them and put her head out, enough to let the warm rain hit her face. She closed her eyes and imagined that she was in an open field in India dancing around the trees with her “Raj”, a Indian man she only knew in her imagination and wrote about in her journal.

As the rain started becoming heavier, the windows needed to be closed, especially the one right near her bed, as she didn’t want to get the red and beige bedspread with a camel and elephant border around the edges to get soaked. Moving the white mosquito net, which was over the bed out of the way and accidentally knocking the stuffed tiger cub and the teddy bear dressed in an orange sari off the gold pillows they were propped up on, Priya shut it down to an inch so the breeze still came in.

Hurrying to get out in the living room before the floor became wet, she tripped on the white ceramic elephant which served as a small nightstand and into the piano bench, which was covered with a throw blanket (in the same rich colors as the bedspread) and two square red and gold cushions. The pain in her leg throbbed as she hobbled out of the room. She hobbled back in after all the windows were closed and fell on the bed. While she sat there rubbing her foot, she looked around the room at the several pieces of artwork hanging on the walls.

There was the one of the Indian women sitting with the children while they worked on their crafts. That one hade been hand painted on cloth especially for her by a struggling artist in India that she contacted through a mutual friend. The black frame that she had it in didn’t do it justice though. She’d change it when she got a chance. On the opposite wall was the one she’d bought at IKEA. It was a framed poster showing a collage of brilliantly colored bags of dye that often appeared in pictures of India. The last one was a picture of four tiger cubs. The fourth wall wasn’t actually a wall. The landlord had made a doorway between the kitchen and this room so it could be used as a dining room with easy access back and forth. To avoid looking at the kitchen through her bedroom and visa versa, she bought a cotton shower curtain and hung it up to block the opening. It too had the reds and tans along with a palm tree, elephant and diamond shape motif.

Her foot was feeling better now and the rain had stopped. Priya decided she’d take her journal and Bollywood soundtracks outside and get lost in another world.

Indian Words

Naan - leavened flat bread
Pakoras - spicy vegetable fritters - yummy!
Lassi - yogurt drink (sweet, salty or mango flavored)
Salwar Kameez - long dress and pant outfit
Kheer - rice pudding typically made by boiling rice with milk and sugar. It is often flavored with cardamom and pistachios.

Ok now I'll hand the baton to Simon and ask him to forgive me for giving him this post to work with - after all he creates comic books about Hal the Space Jock. But I'm sure he'll manage somehow though. Hope so anyway.

See these items and more - at My Indian Treasures

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Pics of India

For more pictures of India like the one in Wordless Wednesday, please go to Steven Caudill's Web pages.

Wordless Wednesday

Credit goes to Steven Caudill

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Monday, August 14, 2006

I've Been Interviewed!

Hi Readers,

Just had to let you know the wonderful news. I was unexpectedly interviewed by Razib Ahmed of IndianRaj and SouthAsianBiz. What an honor! Here is the link to the interview, if you'd like to read it: Indian Cinema is Here to Stay!


Saturday, August 12, 2006

He's going places

A fellow writer at Absolute Write, Razib Ahmed, from Bangladesh is really going places these days. He not only runs two blogs - Indian Raj and South Asian Biz, but he's just won the prestigious Know More Media's Incredible Author Award for July 2006. The Times Online in the UK recognized him too.

He was also interviewed by Darren of The Blog Republic.

Hopefully I haven't forgotten anything. If I have, Razib please let me know.


A New Blog

Just thought I'd stop in and tell you about my new blog Writing From Within. There's not much there yet, as I just created it, but if you get a chance to stop by and say hello, that would be great. Hope to see you there.


Friday, August 11, 2006

AW Chain Round Four Begins

The fourth round of our AW (Absolute Write) chain has begun. As the participants put up their posts in turn, I'll be adding the permalinks on the sidebar (under AW Chain Round Four), so you can follow the chain through.

Please follow along with us and enjoy the ride!

Here are our participants websites, not necessarily in posting order, so make sure to follow the chain from the sidebar please.


Pass the Torch

The Road Less Travelled

Fireflies in the Cloud

Even in a Little Thing

The Secret Government Eggo Project

Curiouser and Curiouser

At Home, Writing

Mad Scientist Matt's Lair

I, Misanthrope - The Dairy of a Dyslexic Writer

Beyond the Great Chimney Production Log

Flying Shoes

Everything Indian

The Hal Spacejock Series

Organized Chaos

Of Chapters and Reels

Just a Small town girl

Midnight Muse

Kappa no He

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Indian Weddings

Here's a great blog post I just came across that explains quite a bit about Indian weddings, specifically a Punjabi wedding. I love the reference she makes to Bollywood films too. :-)

Sheetal Thakur

There is also a great section on Indian Traditions and Culture at Pardesi Fashions

They also have a 9 part section on Punjabi Weddings


Wordless Wednesday

Happy WW!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Does Anyone Know?

Does anyone out there in cyberspace know the name of this song and who sings it? I've put the English translation, but it is actually a song written and sung in Portuguese. I hope someone out there knows and can tell me. Thanks.

The lyrics are very deep in English, I can only imagine how much more so in their original language.

For seven years you fooled me and left me in darkness. I’ll tell the sun to tell the moon that I will never, never give you my forgiveness.

If someday by chance you end up at my door with a sack in hand. I would give you bread just as I would any other beggar. But I will never, never give you my forgiveness.

If someday by chance you end up behind iron bars, I would visit you just like any other prisoner. But I will never, never give you my forgiveness.

If someday by chance, I see you dead and stretched out in your coffin, I’d give you a kiss and then and only then will I give you my forgiveness.

Go to Goa

If you want to see some AWESOME pictures of Goa, India's west coast, which is blessed with the finest beaches in the world - Then please go here and take a look.

The article was written and the pictures were taken by Rajen Nair. ENJOY! Wish I was there!

Monday, August 07, 2006

The Sixth Night

For all you Goans out there and for anyone interested in Goa and/or India, here's a book that you should have on your reading list.

By Silviano C. Barbosa
Published: 2004
Publisher: Goa Raj Books, Toronto, Canada
Cover Art: Venantius J. Pinto (New York)
314 pages
ISBN 0-9736200-0-5

The SIXTH NIGHT was released on December 21, 2005, at Clube Vasco da Gama, Panjim, Goa, by noted novelist Margaret Mascarenhas.

This novel portrays the travails of a Catholic girl growing up in traditional Goa of the 1950s during the last decade of the Portuguese rule.

Linda Cardoso quickly loses the illusion that she lives in a close-knit community as she battles the evil of caste discrimination. She falls hopelessly in love with a foreigner, only to lose him abruptly during the Indo-Portuguese conflict of 1961.

Left alone, ostracised, helpless and pregnant, she has to leave her child for an unknown future in the West and to a new land--Canada.

A story of love, hate, jealousy and intrigue -- great insights into Goan life, traditions and customs.

This unique and popular novel is a compendium of Goan culture, arts, history, geography, traditions, food, faith, psyche and Goan pride. All you need to know about Goa is in this novel.

The author touches the inner core of the reader's conscience with his caustic social commentary to the point that it almost sounds controversial.

No one has to pay for the sins of their forefathers. But they can at least read about them in this novel!

More details at Goa Raj

Thursday, August 03, 2006

My NEW Website is online!

It's a new website so we're at a basic stage. But I just wanted to announce it and invite you to stop by. Hope you like it.

Dark Horse Adaptations

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Wordless Wednesday

Happy Wordless Wednesday folks!

Indian Puppetry

Written by Mridu Khullar Storytelling as Art in Indian Puppetry is a wonderful journey into the world of puppetry. Please stop by and read her informative article. You'll be pleasantly surprised, as I was, how much is being accomplished these days through this medium.

UPDATE on Fuad Omar

Sometime back I conducted an interview with UK's famous Bollywood interviewer, Fuad Omar. In it, Mr. Omar mentioned his book that was soon to be released. He wrote today telling me that 'Bollywood: An Insider's Guide' has indeed been released and where it can be purchased.

Mr Omar says, "If anyone has ever had even an inkling of interest in Indian cinema/Bollywood - I hope you'll enjoy this book. It's a collection of my interviews with Bollywood stars, reviews, features and behind the scenes articles that capture a unique time period in Bollywood history. A new heartthrob was created overnight, a hardworking and talented actor was venturing into producing and a former Miss World was struggling with convincing an industry there was more to her than good looks.

To those who know Bollywood, you'll find Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Aishwarya Rai, Sushmita Sen, Arjun Rampal and many, many more in here, so I hope you enjoy reading about the industry that's made a mark on film forever."

In promoting his new book, Omar will be traveling to India on a three-week book tour, thanks to Mayhem Publishing.

You can buy Bollywood: An Insider's Guide by clicking on the link, which will take you directly to Amazon.

Thanks and happy reading!