Category Archives: Food

Packing, Packing, Packing…And Leaving

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” 

― Dr. Seuss


It’s time to leave.

I leave behind Mumbai and India, arriving in the United States on Christmas Day. That’s my Christmas gift this year – getting back home.

For the last few days, it seems like all I did was work and pack.  That much packing for someone who merely made a temporary home here!  One of these days, I swear I will listen to Leo Babauta who writes in his Zen Habits blog about the ideal life – about simplicity and minimalist living.  

It sounds superb.  But I just can’t seem to get there from here. And I’ve never wanted to get there more than during the last few days of packing!

Underlying all this busy work though, this time has been especially sad and hard – so much more than I expected. When you start thinking that you will miss the smell, grime, and chaotic traffic of Mumbai, you know it’s bad!

The Yin and Yang of Life in India

Endings always do this to me. It’s not that I am not looking forward to the next chapter. Of course, I am!

But I find that once I am part of a new beginning, it begins to take over rapidly and there’s usually no looking back.

Maybe that’s what it is about this situation that makes me morose. Chapter closed. No looking back.

Yes, I believe that what’s really gnawing at me and at the bottom of this feeling it’s all about people – old relationships that were strengthened and new ones that were forged. Just because I happened to live here for two years. That’s who I will miss the most.

Get over it, I’m telling myself, even as I write this.

Imagine if I had been so unlucky that the connections and adventures of these past two years had not even occurred? Now that would be something to cry about! Instead, I got to immerse myself in new experiences and new places for a short but rewarding time.

And what exactly did I get in return? Ah yes, the yin and yang of life in India.

Okay, so I’m over my gloom now. I’m happy.



“You’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So… get on your way!”

― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go!





Reprise: The Best Pani Puri in the World

You would think that with only a couple of posts left to write while living in India, I would pick a topic that is as profound as it is spiritual and deep…but noooooo, I’m writing about, of all things, pani puri!  

Heck, I didn’t even know that I loved pani puri so much until I tasted it here!

So, before I depart and just in case there are some poor souls left in the vicinity who have not tried them, I simply had to celebrate this Mumbai special. Even though I am repeating myself.

As new information, I can only tell you that in these couple of years I have tried other joints where various friends claimed that you could get “the absolutely best pani puri”.


Kailash Parbat, that place in Juhu, this place in Sobo, or the other one in Bandra.  Whatever. I’ve tried quite a few.

And the winner is the same one that I had written about when I first arrived in Mumbai.

That’s Elco Pani Puri Center on Hill Road in Bandra (W)…look, someone even took the trouble of video-taping this deliciousness.

Don’t settle for anything but the best.

Go. Eat. Enjoy!

Crowds with discriminating taste for pani puri at ELCO


Guess where you will find me stopping by during my one remaining weekend here?


I shall miss you, Elco.  Therefore, I will be back.  🙂

Do save some for me!



Photography: Vishal

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