Yesterday I happened to see a post on pork curry on a Calcutta based food platform, unable to resist I commented that it reminded me of the multiple visits to Coorg. The reply from the person who actually posted it said, when you are saying so , it must look authentic. When I initially replied to the post it was more on impulse , but it will be a lie if I say I did not know who posted it.Honestly speaking, even if it was someone else, but the same pic , I would have still commented.Now, he is a well known music composer of Bengal. I have grown up listening to a particular ‘srutinatak’ by his father , which I still hold close to my heart. Possibly there is a parallelism between one of the key characters and me.
Today I received a friend request from the person who posted the food pic. After a brief thought I added him to my FB list and we had a small chat on the messenger. It’s evident that the connection was purely because of the interest and discussion around food and Calcutta. He even asked me to try Ethiopian food, suggested a couple of places to eat and visit in NYC. He could freely ask me to go and check out a place for movie posters for him.
The connection was so instant and honest.
Similarly , I have another friend of mine Abhik Bhattacharya, who writes #uncookedwords and his writing is like a Michelin food guide for me. He writes from the heart, unbiased , unabashed. He is probably the only one whom I initially never met in person but still knew so well. I have met him for the first time in front of a metro station in Bangalore, just to know the person who writes like this and the real him is the same or not. I guess the love for Kolkata , food and bangaliyana binds us . By now, I know his wife and kid too , yet to meet them in person.
There is another person , whom I really really love , and who is like a ‘godfather’ to me , the connection was again the same way. Best part was , when we initially conversed we haven’t had met. I went to an event without knowing he will be there , when I got to know he will be there too ,I was excited yet quiet. When he entered the venue, I just waited quietly beside the door for all the intial ‘oohs’ and ‘wows’ to die out, but he called out clearly by my name and my heart skipped a beat.
Similarly, I had once attended a session in #sodabottleopenerwala in #bangalore on food and spirituality #spiritualityinfood , the session was by none other than #Anaida , the diva who took us by storm during our school days and trust me she still looks the same !! Leave the look part , when she speaks she is so positive , full of energy , it’s really infectious . The following year I met her in a food fair #worldonaplate in #bangalore and I still can’t believe we were chatting for 30 mins or more and we spoke about meditation , well being etc. I still can’t believe I actually recommended her to see the movie #maacherjhol & now whenever we meet anywhere, we get to say our hi’s & hello’s without a thought. Obviously , it’s because she is so humble.
Similarly now , in Bangalore , there are two chefs who are more like friends who can ping or call me at anytime , ask me for information , wherever I be. It’s through one of this connection , I have experienced one of the best meals in Hyderabad , in Dakshin.
When I went to #Srilanka for 12 days last July, R and I used to eat absolutely local food in the most rustic places possible. We used to ask our tour guide cum driver Roshan to eat with us. Firstly his ever smiling face looked at us very inquisitively unasking can you eat these ? Without any word inviting him to eat with us was the silent response. After the initial few days , when he got used to us , he would plan and stop at places accordingly so as to have local best. Sometimes he would get me local fruits and ask me to eat. The best obviously was on our way to Colombo , he asked us to meet his family and lunch together. In an island country like Sri Lanka he not only opened his doors for his home but in a way made us feel that now we have someone there to connect.
While talking about food taking us places it would be unjust on my part to not talk about Sumi di & Ajith da , who are now part of the family, who have not only shared multiple meals with us but taken us to Kochi for family weddings and vacations too. This is one family , we love talking over food. Even before we have finished one meal – uncle & aunty immediately started preparing the following , that how we experienced last June in Paravoor. Now we even get invited to the wedding of their friends and family , for me to explore food.
Feels nice. Feels blessed.
#avrilsfoodjournee #blessed #foodbinds #emotion