Friends you might wonder what does my title mean. But as you read down the post , will understand what I meant. Be patient it’s gonna be a long post…
As you all know I was to travel to Bangalore for a family function. I was completely undecided till the last day whether I could travel for 30hrs with my recuperating child and also because of my prolonged five month old fever, which I am still fighting. S suggested that we both fly and the other two come by train. I did not want to travel without them, so reluctantly I decided to go by train.
I did not sleep the whole night as I had not packed for either of us, so whole day I was packing and clearing up things, finishing my classes, locking the doors etc and was dead tired by the evening of the day of travel.
Since we were to travel by Rajdhani , I did not cook for the 3 of us but for my younger one I had to cook. I decided to carry some low oiled parathas in which I could spread glucose and give him and some rice.
I had asked my help to slice some onions and chop a few french beans, mushrooms and tomatoes so that I could add the veggies to the rice. But when I decided to start cooking I was feeling sad thinking that we all will eat good food in the train and he will be tempted to eat that. In that spur of moment I decided to make a nice aromatic rice for him. The rice turned out really GOOD, the recipe of which I will share at the end.
Our train was to start from the station at 8.50 PM. The normal time taken to reach the station is about 1 hour and 15 mins. We started around 6.15 PM i.e about two and a half hours before the train started. We started facing small traffic jams in the travel and we realised that the taxi driver is a slow guy, he would keep moving behind a slow moving car. Initially S just reminded him that he needs to be driving a little fast. We reached the express highway and to our surprise this driver drove at a speed of 60 there also, so again S reminded him gently that we have a train to board. We all kept looking at our watch to confirm that we had time. It was the 8th day of the Navratra so the traffic in the city was a little high than normal. We asked him to take inner roads and avoid the busy roads but he insisted that the road he is taking will have less traffic and got us stuck in huge traffic jams. We were now only looking at the watch as we were left with only 45 mins in hand, and the initial gentle reminders had turned into strict & sometimes rather loud instructions, but the driver oblivious of our anxiety persisted with his way of driving and we got badly stuck a kilometer away from the station. The hands of the clock kept moving and heart beats thumped rapidly. We could see the time passing by and the chances of missing the train increasing every minute. We started praying and hoping that the train gets delayed due to some reason but the traffic kept creeping slowly. Around 8.50 pm when we were a km away from the station the traffic cleared and we reached the station by 9. I left everyone in the taxi and ran towards the platform to check if the train was still there (pull the chain & stop the train till we reach with the luggage was the instruction I had from S) ….by the time I reached the platform by 9.09 pm the train had left just nine minutes before. This was the BAD part.
We cancelled our tickets and the same driver dropped us back home following the inner lanes in just 45 mins!!! At home we tried filling our stomach with the rice and the parathas., then booked all of us for an early morning flight. We thought we will ‘nicely surprise’ every one by reaching early, little did we know of the surprises stored for us.
We reached the airport on time and checked in. The conveyor belt which carries the luggage got spoilt and the luggage had to be manually loaded, so the flight got delayed by 45 mins. We took off at 7 am, at 7.30 the pilot announced that due to technical problems we have to return back, so we landed back. The next 3 hours were all anxiety as 3 more IA flights got cancelled. There was chaos at the airport finally at 11 we boarded and took off again. Around 1’o clock the pilot announced again that due to some problem in the runway at Bangalore airport we are landing in Chennai. We just laughed at ourselves…..By this time we were very hungry, they gave us a very small helping of rice with a very small helping of curry. The aircraft stayed their at the Chennai airport for next 2 hours. We were left with nostalgia as we were on that land after an year.
The airport staff kept giving a new excuse every minute, but people had called Bangalore airport and we came to know that IA pilots were on strike. With great difficulty we started from Chennai at 4.00 pm and landed in Bangalore at 4.45 pm. I said teasing S that do we have to carry our baggage in our hands now from the aircraft…somewhere I had a feeling the excitement is not over yet, and I was true…our one baggage was diverted to Chennai which to our relief had reached before us. This was the UGLY part where we got tortured by IA people and which continued in our return journey too where at the last minute our flight got cancelled. But to our relief they put us into another flight and we reached home safely.
The other GOOD things were that we made it to the next days headlines and Daddy’s 80th Birthday celebration went off well.
2 small glasses rice
2 onions sliced
1 large tomato
6-7 mushrooms cut into four
10-12 French beans chopped
6-7 pieces of dry lemon grass
3-4 lemon leaves
3 garlic pods finely chopped
3-4 green cardamoms
1 tsp red chili pwd
oil to cook
salt to taste
Soak the rice for 15 mins in water. Decant the water.
Heat oil and add green cardamoms followed by onions. Add garlic and lemon grass. Now add the beans, mushrooms and tomatoes. Mix in salt and red chili pwd.
Add the rice and saute it for 2-3 mins gently. Add in the decanted water and adjust the water so that it’s volume is almost double the volume of rice. Throw in the lemon leaves.
Bring the water to a boil and then simmer the flame. Once the rice is almost done, cover it with the lid. Remove from fire and let it cook with the steam.
The rice has a mild aroma of cardamom and lemon grass which leaves the rice nicely fragrant.