Monday, May 31, 2010

Penang Beef Curry from Chinese Dragon Rocks

I have been a fan of chinese dragon for a long time but they have so much great stuff on their menus that there were three items which had been hidden away from my hungry eyes for all these years. But recently I was invited for dinner at a friends and managed to sample some of these dishes. I actually have to thanks the torrential downpours for this pleasant surprise cos the hopper lady who was supposed to be on duty could not turn up as her house was flooded. Guess every dark cloud has a silver lining cos the hosts decided to order the food from Chinese Dragon. Well to cut a long story short my first fav dish was the Penang Beef curry which was a reddish spicey curry which came mixed with streaks of coconut milk and chillie flakes. And to my absolute delight it was very very spicey. Actually Fiery would be the better word to describe it.
The secondl dish was another thick yellowish curry called Indonesian style prawn curry again the flavour was unique and I just can't describe it however much I try.
The third dish which was a reccomendation by the hostess which I ordered another day was "Lemon chicken" it is similar to sweet and sour chicken but is much nicer and in a lemony sauce.
Oh and another secret if you really want a super pork "bite" then you should get them to do you a sri lankan stle pepper spare ribs. It is not on the menu and only a few know of it but damn it is amazing. Well kudos to Chinese Dragon for creating the best "Sri Lankan Chinese" cuisine in the world.

Where have all the helpful politicians gone???

You could not escape their images assaulting us from every nook and cranny before the elections. Fawning over young and old; male, female and even animal
But have you seen them out in full force during the floods? Helping the affected people? I haven't. Have you? Have you?

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Stopped in our tracks by leopards!

These are some old pics which I found recently and I wanted to share them with you and make you feel envious I guess. It was a Sunday evening in Yala and the crowds had left for home so we were probably the only party out at that time.

When we found these two leopards right in the middle of the road. And they did not move just waited on the road chilling out we were just six feet away from them and I managed to shoot some quite good pictures.

Sadly it was beginning to get dark and we had to return to the bungalow so we turned around and left after spending nearly 30 minutes with them without anyone else disturbing us. How great is that?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Permit to profit!

"Oh give me a permit... where the mercedes roam... and brand new SUVs can be picked up like hay..." (Sung to the tune of Home on the range apologies about the bad rhyme thank goodness I am not a rapper) that's the song I am croaking these days as I writhe in envy when I realized what an windfall of opportunity has been bestowed on our political masters. Did you know that each of them is getting a duty free permit to import a vehicle of up to 50,000 U.S Dollars. The same kind of vehicle which we the powers that voted them in would have to pay 250,000 dollars for. This means for the price we pay for a decent second hand sedan they can get a top range mercedes or brand new fully loaded Land Cruiser. When I heard of this I was shedding tears at the unfairness of it all. Do you know nearly all the cars bought under these permits are sold bringing them a more than tidy profit. Do you also know that we have the most expensive cars in the world and we pay 400% of the value of a vehicle as duty and tax?
Why oh why does this government deny us of the experience of driving a decent vehicle while keeping the privilege selfishly for themselves. If its bad for us who do a decent days work shouldn't it be equally bad for those who are good for nothing and don't know the meaning of the word decent or work for that matter. In fact I think its time the roles are reversed where the politicians should be asked to pay a far higher price. After all they are the parasites who are sucking this country dry.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Warning: Medicines can Kill you even a panadol

I came across this article today about another preventable death of a young life and it galvanized me into typing this article. Most of us are conditioned not to question what a doctor prescribes. In fact we think bad medicine is an oxymoron. The fact that we can be allergic to medicine is not something which we are aware of and therefore we don't look out for such signs. And in certain cases we ignore the symptoms thinking the doctor is always right. But the sad truth is a lot of people are allergic to medicine. Sometimes even a simple tablet like Panadol can lead to a deadly reaction called Stephen Johnson Synodrome. The first signs are dry lips and also little wounds on the tongue. I I learnt the lesson the hard way and todate wish I had known better. I am just posting this so that at least someone else can learn from my mistakes.

Are we ever really free

The other day we were invited to a relations for lunch and no one wanted to attend. We would rather spend sunday at home. But we could not say "NO" without hurting the other person. So an elaborate excuse about me having a shoot was concocted. Sadly like most all elaborate excuses this one shatterred to pieces when my voice was heard in the background of a phone conversation. Honestly I did not think they would call. Thankfully the weather gods were there to save us and since it was raining my shoot had been canceled. Anyway it was sad we had to lie such a lot. It reminded me of reading somewhere that "true freedom or independence was the ability to say I can't without giving a reason". All I can do is nod my head vigorously and say how true!

Friday, May 21, 2010

The greedy security guard..

Now I know people like to eat specially if they don't get the opportunity to indulge often. But this guy I will call Rod really takes the cake. Well the other day we had a breakfast function in office. This chap was seen filling plates till they overflow and taking them to his security hut SIX times. And then he actually sent another person twice to get some more stuff. And it did not stop at that; we had kept the left over food in the pantry and this guy was seen making frequent trips to the pantry and taking more stuff in little bags. One would wonder what he does with the food. Does he share it? No! He just eats it throughout the next few days. Thank goodness as a rule we make it a point to always order more than what is required.
People say I should be angry at this guy for his gluttony but to be honest all I feel is pity towards him. I too like my food and it makes me wonder if I did not have the opportunities I have today if I too would end up like him?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Kaanu Suthra

A new book on the thousand and one ways you can gently open up the channels and release those pent up gallons which are frustratingly blocking your road, house and office. Experience what a relief it is to see all your troubles gushing away to kingdom come???? This is an investment which will certainly not be money thrown down the drain.

If you find this book do let me know

Hena gahanawao!!!!!

I already lost a router to the recent lightening storms we are experiencing which means no wireless for me till I get a new Broad Band connection sorted out. Thank goodness my loss did not involve life or limb unlike some of my fellow countrymen. I heard ten of them had died due to lightening so far.I got this email which I thought I should share with everyone just in case… after all it is better to be safe than sorry.


* If the time gap between the lightening flash AND the thunderbolt is
less than 15 seconds, you are in the danger zone. If you can hear the
thunder you are in the striking distance.The lightning can strike as far as
16 kms (10miles) away from the raining zone.

* Keep away from any connectivity with water. Avoid bathing, cloths
washing, dish washing etc.

* Wipe and dry up your body as quickly as possible.

* Avoid wearing wet cloths.

* Try to be inside a properly enclosed building.

* If at home, the most secured position is lying on the bed not
touching any walls. Restrict your body expand only to the rubber mattress.

* Avoid being closer to windows, doors, car porches, cloth lines,
metal fences, metal shelters, transformers, switch boards and telephones.

* Move away from groups of people.

* Avoid leveled outdoor open spaces. Cease all outdoor activities.

* Avoid being on top (???? I thought someone always had to be on top oops pardon my dirty mind) or near hill tops, roof tops and tower tops.

* Avoid being in or near water swimming pools, rivers, streams or

* Never use any phones mobile or land. Disconnect the phone wires.

* Do not use or be near the refrigerator.

* Disconnect TV antenna wire and place it outside through a window.

* Avoid using computer or other electric / electronic appliances.

* Disconnect all coded electrical connections. Stop battery charging.

* Ensure that the earth wire resistance does not exceed 10ohm/meters.

* Take pets inside the building. Leave their metal chains outside.

* Avoid using umbrellas and other objects with metallic components.

* Avoid riding bikes, motor bikes, horses and open roof vehicles

* Switch off car stereos. Close the shutters and doors when driving
during lightening. As much as possible, do not touch metal parts. Avoid
driving in leveled open spaces. Park in basements at all possible

* Avoid taking shelter under tall trees. Squat down to lower your

* In the night lightening times, consider disconnecting main power
from the MCB and try to depend on candle light during the danger period.

(Data Courtesy National Disaster Management Center)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Sweet Sixteen...

Would we have gone out to buy something pretty for you to wear?
Would we have clashed on what pretty was?
Would you have laughed and said I am old fashioned...
Would you have wanted a big party?
Or would you have wanted something more intimate with those who are closest to you...
Would you have developed a secret crush on a boy by now?
Or would you still think boys are yucky?
Would you have been as tall as I am?
Would we have still walked hand in hand or would you have been embarassed by your old man?
These are the questions which run through my mind
As I sit here and try not to cry
wondering what it would have been like
if you were here to celebrate sweet sixteen.

In memory of my daughter Santhushi who would have been 16 today if she was here

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Isn't it good to die young!

I always wanted to die at forty. Well at least till I was forty. I was reminded of this today when I heard about a former colleague who had fallen dead all of a sudden from a heart attack. At thirty five he was definitely too young to die. This is the third such death I have heard of this year. The first thing which struck me was how vulnerable we all are and that if it could happen to him it could definitely happen to me.
I was not close to LR neither did I admire him or was inspired by him. But in his death I have new respect for him. I see that he had impacted a lot of people positively and that their was a genuine outpouring of grief. This was the first time that someone on my face book had passed away. And it was eerie to scroll down his page and pass from the condolence messages to updates by him from a few days back. As someone said only the good die young.
But it still made me wonder or is it that when the young die they are upheld as good automatically in our society hungry for a good story. Isn't it to go out with a bang or in a blaze of glory as bon jovi wailed instead of fading away. Well I for one always wanted to go while I am on top. Of course unlike one of my cousins who did so quite literally as he decided to bid good bye to the world in the arms of his mistress. I can still remember all of us with wry faces at the funeral telling one another he came and went at the same time. Now back to the more serious subject matter. I wonder what it is like to die? It scares me. I would like to know what it feels like. This has resulted in a somewhat morbid fascination with near death experience.
Anyway it was sad a young life was snuffed so early. Also it made me more conscious of the fact that I too maintain a similar lifestyle like my friend did. And a similar fate might await me too. Even though it might not be a bad thing the first thing I did after hearing this shocking news was sneak into the gym for an extra session of cardio and heave a sigh of relief that 60 is the new 40.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Colombo by flood light

Why oh why is it that we can't have a proper drainage system in our country. I was stuck in traffic for over one hour and still could not get to my destination. Generally this trip would take less than thirty minutes. To while away the time I just took some pics and thought I would share it with all of you

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A lesson we can learn from an elephant!

This is something which I heard while attending a training with Dhammika Kalapuge and I thought it was worth sharing.
Do you know that elephants are tied to little stakes in the ground and they have the stregnth to easily break free of them if they want to? But they never do. This is because when they were young they could not break away from them to the trees they were tied on. And this message has been imprinted on their brain and hold them back for the rest of their lives. They say an elephant never forgets and it is true but sadly it is sommething which hinders his progress. The truth is that us human beings are also like this elephant most of the time. We come up with lots of negative memories and past experiences and use them as excuses for why we cant achieve what we want to. Or say to ourselves we are not good at certain things convincing ourselves that is impossible. When in reality it is not the case. I think sometimes it is much easier to come up with excuses than to try and face the possibility of dissapointment. Sometimes the main obstacle to ones progress is ones own self. We need to try and break away from our negative culture and try and develop a positive consciousness and the day we do that we can unleash our true potential. Of course it is easier said than done.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010