The Big Fat Lentil Wedding

It was a morning of a date which is quite unclear in my memory. I woke up to the rising sound of traffic and the fluttering of pigeons eternally stuck in the window railings. I picked up my toothbrush, squeezed the last remains of the toothpaste, and tucked the brush into my mouth. I needed […]

Fifty Shades of Purple

We walked towards one of our favourite pubs in Bangalore, belting past the street vendors, groups of Bangalore college students, and recognizable bunches of software workers. Crossing Brigade Road was a routine affair on weekends, often accompanied by meeting a long lost friend, an unwanted encounter, or an unusual one (like meeting a person and […]

क्या हिंदी जीवित रहेगी?

आखिरी सासें लेती, थकी-हारी, चरमराई, हिंदी की जो है हालत, उसे बचा सके दवा न दुहाई। अंग्रेजी का अत्यधिक उपयोग, नहीं है इसका कारण, ना ही इस बात पे रोने से, टलेगा इसका मरण। हिंदी के पुनर्जन्म का, बस एक ही है रास्ता, अपने स्तर पर उसका प्रचार, और भाषा के प्रति सच्ची आस्था। यूँ तो […]

Pak-e-Mysore

The story of Mysore Pak is close to my heart, one full of love and equal amounts of good cholesterol. Mysore Pak is quite simply my favourite sweet. There is nothing which comes close to it. Well Jalebi sometimes does, but it still remains a distant second. Bengali sweets are further down the podium. And the western […]

मलहम-ए -खिचड़ी

आपको देख दिल पे चल जाती है अभी भी छुरिया, पर आपने तो फेका था हमें जैसे सीली हुई भुजिया। खा पी कर ले रही हो तुम डकार, पर क्या कभी याद किया तुमने पुराना प्यार? धराशायी मन, टूटे दिल की सिसकी, सोचा शांत करू इसे मार मदिरा की चुस्की। पर मदिरा की राह लेते है असफल […]

Recalling Indian Coffee House

I am a frequent visitor to the multiple coffee shops in Mumbai. During these visits I have developed a special affection for the filter coffee joints at Matunga, and a growing admiration for the multiple homegrown and international brands setting shop in the city. But for me, and many more like me, coffee had humble […]

The Shimla Affair – Chapter II

Continued from Part I… Slowly and steadily the flavors of Shimla were building on me, or probably building a better me. The daily dose of the forgettable Kadhi, the ever so delightful daal, and ghee-moistened rotis served by those beautiful long slender fingers were adding a new dimension to my life. One beyond infatuation, adding […]

किम्कर्त्व्यविमुढ

सब कुछ  था स्थिर, अविचलित, शांत सा, अचानक से इस दुविधा ने लाया एक बवंडर सा। क्या करे क्या ना करे के दोराहे पर मैं हु खड़ा, असमंजस से जूझता, पर इरादों पर अड़ा। इस पार है निराशा, उस पार आशा की किरण, बीच मझदार का सफ़र है, जिस पर तय होगा जीवन-मरण। -अभिषेक ‘देसी’ देशपांडे

The Shimla Affair – Chapter I

I hadn’t realized how close we were to our hostel. I looked at my watch, it was around 7:30 PM, but it felt like it was 11 already. The Shiv Temple which stood brightly shining in the morning sunlight looked a bit dull now. The only shops which seemed busy were the two liquor stores […]

A Very Long Walk to Freedom

There is a continuous buzz in my ear, but I neglect that and keep running. I see him clearly, the colors are crystal clear, Hi Definition, and beautifully bright, even in the pitch black darkness of night. I can see the rolling ball at his feet, about to leave them, but still hesitant, like a […]