Om Shanti Om!

by Jeanne


Yes. Yes. Over here. My oh my. I have been absent haven’t I? Well from here, not from life nor kitchen.  Two months have rolled on by.  Needless to say I am becoming consistently absent.   How do people do this whole thing while holding down a full time job?  Is anyone else managing a team? a line of business? holding down a bit of a social calendar?! Enough whining!

More or less what’s passed since I was last here is that that issue #2 of Traveler has been released.  We affectionately call this issue Hula Baby! Isn’t that just the most adorable photo? Before I get those comments  that seem to follow when people see this cover is that issue #3 will not feature a back side.  Over 32-pages Hawaii, Costa Rica, a Kenyan safari and volunteering while on vacation are all vividly illustrated.  Each issue–3 and 4 are closing or in development as I write–keeps getting better and better.  Although the process has gotten easier each issue is an endeavor.  I really like the work  as it is rewarding and challenging in equal weight. 


So all this marketing of travel has pushed me to make a decision about my summer vacation.  So being of sound culinary mind and desire I have decided to journey to Kerala for a culinary tour. India.  Lash Pash eh?!  My interest in the culture of India started a few years ago with the discovery of Bollywood at the annual SF Asian Film Festival.  This  moved into a natural and growing interest and exploration of the food of India.  I love Bollywood.  There I’ve said it. At this year’s festival the Bollywood film Om Shanti Om directed by Farah Khan and starring Shahrukh Khan was shown. If you haven’t experienced Bollywood you are missing something special.  I spent 9 plus hours watching three films on one day during this year’s festival.  The third film of the day began at 8:45 pm and at 12:30 am, on a Sunday, the sidewalk outside the Castro was alive with laughing and impromtu dancing.  This film is lash pash (fantastic).  Drama, comedy, singing, dancing—it has everything. 

Now it’s a masala of blogs, cookbooks, travel guides and podcasts related to the language, food, music  and movies as I prepare for the trip in August.  Three weeks in Southern India. Visiting a coconut farm, a tea plantation, home cooking lessons, a spice auction and somewhere along the way I hope to end up on a beach somewhere. But now there’s so much to learn, to taste, to understand.  So over the next few months as Iaccelerate and build my fundamentals I will share those posts with you.  There’s quite a few good books that I’m mid-way through including Curry – A Tale of Cooks & Conquerors and Eating India that are not only excellent primers on Indian cuisine but also of a crash course in political history.  If anyone has tips, suggestions related to understanding the food of Southern India or places not to be missed please–do let me know.