A stroll through Delhi

Hello there! 🙂

Long time, no see. Well, yes, I do take the responsibility of not being around but I would rather make good use of whatever time I got here today. 🙂 Before I begin, I just wanted to say that I have made some really good bonds over the internet through this blog and I never ever expected that! Now this has become something I look forward to as part of writing here. So, if you missed reading the posts or just wish to say hi or anything else really, please do drop a comment. It will certainly make my day!

About this post, I know a few readers here who love my Delhi posts more than anything else. Probably, they turn out the best too because I love them a lot myself. As some of you have heard a million times already, I LOVE exploring places and cultures and, of course, writing about them and shooting them.

This reminds me that I finally got a DSLR. 😀 I know many people here were tired of hearing me crib about not having one. Let’s see how that goes. I really had no time to learn its workings so far and I think it has already been 2 months!

Cutting the blabber right here, this is what I did on a warm autumn afternoon in Delhi when I had to meet a very good friend of mine.

I think you will like this little photo walk. (Yes, the pictures are taken with the new camera).

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We first went to the Shri Bangla Sahib Gurudwara in the heart of Delhi, Connaught Place. For those of you who don’t know, Gurudwaras are praying shrines for primarily the Sikh community. But some of us who have been brought up in a Punjabi culture do visit them too.

As far as Delhi is concerned, it is so cosmopolitan that you will see people of all sorts visiting all sorts of shrines, irrespective of their faith (or lack thereof).IMG_0302

Look at the beautiful lake inside the Gurudwara.

After this, we moved towards one of my favorite places in Delhi. Guess, guess. I can’t wait anyway. The Oxford Bookstore or ‘Cha Bar’, the very famous bookstore cum cafe famous for the n types of teas or ‘chai’ it stocks up on.

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This blue part of the bookstore is super enticing. Look at how beautiful and colorful it is with all the kids’ books. *Sigh*

What is only barely visible in the picture is that baby blue colored pool-like sitting arrangement. It’s one of the coolest ways to sit around in a bookstore (but I am not too sure if people sit inside that cavity as I never saw anyone doing that).

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The lighting arrangement at the cafe was on point, what with the Diwali theme going on. That girl with a cap is one of the servers.

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That’s just me trying different lighting.

I am sorry for not having any food photos. We were too hungry to click when the food came in.

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Oh, by the way, this piece of art right at the entrance was a little scary. Does she not look like a real human being? Oh, well.

That’s pretty much it. I hope you enjoyed this, really. 🙂

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4 fabulous white sauce pasta places in Delhi

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I cannot say whether I am a pasta lover, because it’s definitely not one of my favorite things to eat. However, I like it quite a lot and most times when I am eating out, I can be found gorging on white sauce pasta. I love white sauce over red. I think that’s the case with most people? If you too are one of them, you need to check out these 4 places in Delhi. Hey, pasta lover or not, a blog post about food never hurt anyone. 🙂

Let’s begin, shall we?

1. Rodeo, Connaught Place

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Who orders a white sauce pasta in a Mexican restaurant? We do and we are glad we did. This is one of the best pastas I have ever tried. So, so yummy. I generally think that the Italian fair we all eat (pastas, pizzas, ravioli etc) is less salty for my tastes but this one was perfection. Not completely Indian-ized but not bland either. This is a must try. A word of caution: don’t try if you can’t handle overload of cheese. (I know you want to ;)).

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2. Uber Cafe, GK 2

I have forgotten the pasta’s taste now since I tried it a long time ago 😀 but I clearly remember going crazy. It was very creamy, that’s what I remember. This place has great food otherwise too, I mean apart from the pasta. I am definitely going here again soon!

3. Pizza Hut

Yes, I said it. I know you are thinking that I probably haven’t tried enough places. Well, I haven’t because there’s really a lot to try in Delhi and I don’t go out all that much. Still, I have tried my fair share of things and let me just say that I love Pizza Hut’s creamy mushroom pasta more than a lot of cults. Yes, I do.

4. Cha Bar, Oxford Bookstore, Connaught Place

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Okay, I am cheating a bit. I have heard good things about their white sauce pasta but it is never available whenever I am there. Hmph. I specially went one day so that I can eat it and complete this post afterwards (look at the dedication, you guys! ) but no, it wasn’t available. I ate the red sauce pasta instead which I did not like. Why is this place in the post then? 3 reasons: 1) The title ‘4 fabulous’ sounds better than ‘3 fabulous’, 2) I have a picture of the red sauce pasta that I ate, so I can use it in this post, 3) I am hopeful that the white sauce pasta will be good.

Lastly, I want to mention that if it crossed your mind why I haven’t mentioned Big Chill in this post, then that’s because I love Big Chill but their pastas are not salty enough for my taste, so its pasta comes after these 4 in my list. 🙂

Happy eating!

More importantly, happy exploring! 🙂

Life Instagram-ed #13

First things first, I got honored with the ‘Very Inspiring Blogger Award’ by Jen @ The Haute Mommy Handbook. So very happy that she thought of me for awarding this. 🙂

Now I don’t think anyone missed having Life Instagram-ed posts around, but I missed writing these. 😀 The reason you are seeing less of these and Street Style posts is that my phone has broken down and I used to use my phone camera. Today, I really wanted to do this, so I used my mom’s phone, used Insta through laptop, basically went at great lengths to get my Instagram feed here. Finally, here you go from what you last saw in Life Instagram-ed #12:

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1. What do you think this is? No guessing game, I can’t wait to tell you. It’s a fabric piece from Shanker Market, Connaught Place when I was roaming there with one of my best friends while she selected some fabric for her sister’s marriage and I drowned in the gorgeousness. If you are even a tiny bit into getting your clothes stitched, this market is a must visit place. Though let me warn you it’s not exactly cheap. Still, must visit!

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2. This is from the Gurpurab celebrations in the area where I live. It’s a Sikh festival for the birth of the first Guru. Notice how coordinated everyone looks cleaning the road ahead for their Holy Book to arrive. It’s funny how faith can bind or break us. 🙂

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3. From the same procession, you see the ‘Panj Pyare’. Honestly, I never knew about what they signify even though I have seen them/heard about them since childhood. Having used Google, here’s what they are: While I did know the literal translation ‘The 5 beloved ones’ (I know this much Punjabi), they represent the first five men who were initiated into the Khalsa (the emodiment of the Guru) in the Sikh ceremony of initiation by their 10th Guru.

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3. The Holy Book of the Sikhs – Shri Guru Granth Sahib ji.

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4. Aah, this. :’) This is that side head-gear that you usually see Muslim women wearing commonly known as ‘Passa’ or ‘Jhoomar’. I really wanted to have own since a long time. I think this one is so very pretty and is as not pricey either. I got this for INR 800. The only problem is that it is very heavy, so doesn’t stay put in my thin hair. I imagined myself looking beautiful when I wore this to a friend’s wedding recently, but it was coming off every 5 seconds due to my thin hair!!

If you live in Delhi and want to buy this, let me know and I’ll be happy to share the shop details.

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5. When you have Nachos but no dip and no inclination to make any, you gather whichever vegetables are there in the kitchen and preferably chopped already. 🙂

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6. This one is special. One of my good friends from the blogging world, Krupa from Ishtyle Awhile, sent these earrings as a gift when I won a fun quiz on her blog. This is the first time I have ever won in a contest like this, you know, and the personal note was a cherry on the cake!

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7. This one is really, really important. If you are into baking at all, you should definitely try this recipe of Garlic Pull-Apart Rolls. Trust me, if I can do this, anyone can because I always face issues while baking in our microwave. I cannot stress on how badly I want you to try this recipe for it’s easy, tasty and satiates the craving for baking breads to some extent. Please do make this! I have made this thrice, the first time following the exact recipe, the second time replacing all-purpose flour (maida) with wheat flour and the third time adding paneer bhurji (cottage cheese dish) as a filling. So if you have anything to ask when you try the original recipe, feel free to ask. 🙂 Only thing to keep in mind is that you must have a convection mode in your microwave for any baking and if you use gas cook-top for baking, then I won’t be able to suggest the tweaks for this recipe as I don’t know about that. [Bhakti, this is the recipe we talked about].

Pheww! I typed this post twice as I lost the draft. 😀 That’s pretty much it. 🙂

Take care & keep smiling 🙂

A happy new Year!

A very happy new Year to all of us 🙂 I hope the year 2015 brings lots of happiness for all of us. Here’s to bigger dreams, stronger will powers, happier times and living life to the fullest no matter what the challenge is. 🙂

My Facebook status currently reads ‘Ringing in the new year with a humble visit to Shahjahan’s Delhi when the world parties it all out in Lutyens’ Delhi (in the end, we did visit Shri Bangla Sahib in Lutyens’)’. For those who have no idea about what I am saying, basically I and my brother visited the Sam’s Cafe in Paharganj today evening which is in Old Delhi. Old Delhi was built during the Mughal era, so that’s why Shahjahan’s Delhi. Quite a choice for visiting on New Year but, oh well. Then we also visited Shri Bangla Sahib Gurudwara in Connaught Place. CP was designed by British architect Edwin Lutyens’ (just Google-d the full name) during the British rule, so areas designed by him are popularly known as Lutyens’ Delhi. The idea of this post came through a comment by Tatsat where he asked to talk about things we did on New Year. It’s good that he expected that I’ll be doing something happening. 😛

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Sam’s Cafe, Paharganj

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Shri Bangla Sahib Gurudwara, Connaught Place. So beautiful, I know!

PS: I just checked my annual report card at WordPress and it is a really, really fun thing to do. Check mine here and definitely check your too, you must have got an email notification about the same on your registered email by WordPress.

Have a very happy new Year everyone! 🙂

9 tips on how to buy books without going broke!

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Finally, here’s the first post in the ‘Friday’s List’ series. It was a super busy day because I wasted most of it browsing internet, as always. Anyway, finally it’s here. This idea of how to save up on books was there in my head subconsciously ever since I read a similar post on bluchickenninja. If you are a book lover, you are most likely a book hoarder too and that is never good for your wallet. Here are some tips on how I satiate my cravings to buy books without going broke:

  1. Know your city’s book haunts                                                                                                                               Every city has it. If you are shaking your head and saying no, then you probably don’t know about it in your city. Every city would have some market where you can buy old books for cheap, it would either be a small dingy shop or a big famous weekly market or an old library but something would definitely be there. For example, in Delhi (and I do realize Delhi has advantages when it comes to markets), there is a Sunday book market in DaryaGanj (Old Delhi), there is this and many, many more small shops that we are not aware of. It helps being aware of these places (although I have never been to these two). This point also includes those ‘a kilo for 100 rupees’ kind of shops/stalls. 🙂
  2. Be aware of online discounts                                                                                                                                  Yes, stating the obvious. With other things, you can estimate whether the quality is worth your money but, with books, there is only one rule – how badly you want it. You can never justify the amount. Any discount is good discount but you can easily notice that good websites for books like Amazon India and Flipkart come up with great discounts every once in a while. So, you don’t have to give up before those bumper sales, don’t fall for 10%-20%, wait, 60% is coming. For example, I have noticed that Amazon has amazing sales on books around Independence Day. 🙂                           IMG_20140823_134130
  3. Know your city’s book cafes                                                                                                                                    This trend is soon catching up and who wouldn’t love food+books in one cozy place? Although I don’t have much experience, but I think you can sit and read for as long as you want at most of these places. Of course, this is not exactly buying the book but, maybe, just maybe, you wouldn’t want to buy afterwards. The experience might be fulfilling enough. These places host book launches as well. For example, Oxford Bookstore, N-Block, Connaught Place. MUST VISIT place if you are into books.
  4. Wait for the hype to die down                                                                                                                                       If you can, that is. 🙂 In today’s fast changing world, even new releases get discounted pretty soon and if you combine that with point 2, your wallet will thank you.                                                                                                                      IMG_20141006_232330  
  5. Be the patron of a store                                                                                                                                                  If you visit some local store of your city regularly to buy books, the store people feel equally warmed up to you as you are to the store. They would always keep you updated about discounts, new launches, availability. This will especially be valid for small cities.
  6. Know your libraries well                                                                                                                                                 Again, this is not exactly buying books but once you find some place to get continuous flow of books for reading, your hunger to actually buy will subside a bit. Caution: This backfires too. I ask my mom to get books from her office library and they are such lovely old editions that it hurts to return them. :/                                                                                 IMG_20140712_114336
  7. Keep an eye for ‘buy/sell/rent books’ platforms                                                                                                         There are many websites and physical stores which provide the facility of selling books and buying books, even renting them. It’s hard to sell off books but there would definitely be some in your cupboard that you might want to. Plus, buying books from these places might come out cheaper.
  8. Do not just confine to your reading list                                                                                                                        Yes, we all have reading lists but don’t confuse it with a buying list. There should never be a buying list. Be adventurous about buying books. If you are getting a good deal, take chances about buying books that you weren’t even aware of.
  9. Book Swaps                                                                                                                                                                     Again, this is not exactly buying but, at times, this may help you in getting a book that you want to read by giving away one that you are fine parting away with. I have hardly done this.                                                                                     DSC_8982

That’s it. As for myself, I follow 2, 4, 8 strictly. 😀 I follow 1 quite less due to time constraints but I would love to follow it more often. I have slowly begun doing 3 and I am loving it.

Which ideas do you agree/disagree with? Any more tips to save on books? 😀

Life Instagram-ed #10 and hello from Philippines! :D

Hi everyone! 🙂

Ok, it is a little creepy on my part that I am saying hello from Philippines after spending 4 days here and when it’s almost time to come back. 😛 (Honestly, I imagined myself writing a post the day I reached 😛 ) Anyway, that did not happen. I don’t know why. I am here on a business trip and this is my first international trip. 🙂 The moment I realized that this is my first international trip, something popped in my head. On one of my earlier posts, Tatsat had commented that ‘you will go places with your attitude’ for some reason. Somehow, when I read  that comment, it felt very, very heart-felt. I am not sure if he wrote it like that or it’s just me but I felt like he actually is sending a wish for my success. Whatever be the case, I was reminded of this comment. 🙂

Coming back, this is NOT my Instagram feed from my stay in Philippines (because Hi! I am Srishty and I cannot break the sequence). I haven’t done the Instagram post here since mid-June and therefore, I couldn’t skip that and start with Philippines. So, here you go from around two-three months back:

1. The renovated Fab India in Block-A, Connaught Place. I LOVE Fab India by the way and their new store is not only about the stuff they sell! Just look at it.IMG_20140722_201848

 

2. That is the Kailash Colony metro station. They have these paintings all over the platforms and I love them!

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3. I just clicked this randomly and it did not look like refined oil at all. I asked people on Instagram to guess what this is and somebody said beer too. 😀

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4. Visited one of my favorite places, Sukhdev Dhaba in Murthal (Delhi-Haryana higway) after a long time.

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5. Randomly reading a magazine.  

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6. That is my cupboard and the day I received these sunglasses, I was clicking them with everything. Doesn’t it look super cool though? Like someone awesome’s stuff? 😛IMG_20140823_134130

 

7. Please read point 6. 😛 This was clicked on our way to Agra when some of us friends planned a one-day trip there (yes, post will be up once I am back, so many posts lined up in my head!!) That’s my scarf by the way, the one that I wear to protect my hair/face from Delhi ki garmi 😛 (heat).

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8. This is from the restaurant ‘Not Just Paranthas’. Post coming up soon. 😛

 

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9. That is the famous(?) ‘Pizzeria Rossa’ in Hauz Khas village. I don’t know, I found it pretty average. I have this feeling though that their starters might be good. I tried two dishes and found them average. The pasta was average and the dessert tasted regular too (I am not anyway a well-informed person when it comes to dessert).

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10. Random click in Rapid Metro because I was wearing my favourite pants from Van Heusen (but they are not quite visible :P).

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11. The new client’s office in their India location, the only thing to cheer me up there is this area.

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That’s it. 🙂 Regarding my stay, I am feeling kind of lonely, I always thought that I’ll love being alone as a tourist but that’s actually not the case. Although I am enjoying myself but like someone who travels a lot, not like a tourist. I don’t feel like covering a lot of places, I just want to chill and explore things around me. However, I know I’ll regret this later when people ask me things like where did you go in the Manila city. I don’t know why people’s opinion matters so much to me. 

Pheww. Thanks for reading, guys. 🙂 😛