So, some days back I was looking for different ways to cook ghia (bottle gourd/lauki/doodhi) – because you know how your grandson is not a big fan of the kootu – and thought, arre, why not lauki muthia. Easy to make, steamed, tasty – what was not to like? Turned out very well, of course, and Vidur loved it. And said we should make this often.
Which gave clever ol’ me the brilliant idea of muthia-ing various other veggies for variety: cabbage, methi, karela, etc. Really, the options are almost unlimited with also a wide choice of flours to use ranging from oats to multi millet to multi grain to whole wheat – all either complemented by besan and suji – or not.
The conversation meandered to Gujaratis and I couldn’t help but remember the kind Mr Vyas, your colleague at M-e-B. What a sweet family! I recalled our first visit to their place – it was 1982 I think – they had invited us for chai-nasta, remember? First of all, we were fascinated by their house – the huge living room with gaddis scattered for people to sit on with his mother holding court.
After some chit chat, she called for the tea and snacks – chai and nasta. And oh boy! Were we overwhelmed at the variety of deliciousness that was served! We were surprised to see that Sir’s wife wore a goonghat (veil) and shy but she smiled a lot, I remember! Finally when we could eat no more they brought the masala chai.
What we expected was maybe biscuits and some savory snacks and chai and what we ended up having was a grand and rather heavy meal. Best part was – Sir’s mother started insisting we stay for dinner. We were shocked because we felt we couldn’t eat for the next few days – since we felt overfull already!
Then – Mr Vyas gifted us a box. When we returned home and opened it there were six tall steel glasses.
So here comes the connection – I told Vidur that these were the very glasses in which he had his milk in the morning every day since he started drinking in a glass at the age of 5! And before that, we had been using two of those for my coffee. What about my current kaapi tumbler? That came much later.
Another thing. When I peeked into the Al3 trunks recently in the kitchen machchu (finally!) I had such a good time looking at the stuff. It all happened because I have been wanting to do this for months and had started worrying that I might forget what is in those. So when I told Sury this he laughed and said let’s do it right now!
Of course I brought down several things. Among these were two of the steel glasses, still new. I thought why not use them too. Funny thing – I never use Vidur’s glasses for buttermilk. Reminded me of how you would always save the blue clothes clips for his clothes just because he loved blue! I am laughing thinking of it you know.
I also felt so nostalgic looking at our coffee expresso and brass filter. And so nostalgic about those brass containers that belonged to Paati with the roughly hewn “mangalam” on the side. None of the electric carving stuff those days, no? What all plans I had, remember, Mi? When I look at those huge brass lamps at the top of the living room shelf where I parked them because Vidur wanted to play with them when he was a toddler, I feel just a bit sad. I should clean, polish and lacquer them, no? Sigh.
I really missed you yesterday when we were dusting, sweeping, mopping. I was reminiscing about those days when you would want to shift things around every other week. What fun it was. Kept the house spotless too! These days although we may occasionally think about moving things around, we barely get around to it because we are alternating between too busy and too lazy. Also, I’ve changed, too. I have moved away from the all or nothing attitude. I realize that every step is progress. Yup. Because with the all or nothing, I fear nothing would ever get done!
Going to make coffee.