Thursday, March 16, 2006

Songs of the Road

"That's one thing about my life; it has a great soundtrack", said Roddy Doyle in The Woman who Walked into Doors. Similar affliction affects my friend, Falstaff, who has a soundtrack to his Vermont trip. Served with cookies, dal, biryani and various other assortments that he had across the way. Do read anytime you have a weekend off and are wondering what to do in New York.

"Further north, we stop at a sweet little roadside bakery, pick up fresh scones and cookies (and some of the best Cappucino I've had in a long time). The stereo is playing Bismillah Khan. The shehnai swoops and peaks with the control of a true master; as we listen, the music takes over, we close our eyes, hang suspended in its shrill, swooning universe, in the endless labyrinth of its variations."

Consider the following paragraph, which captures Beethoven and biryani (though I must remind Falstaff that chicken biryani is like chicken sausages or IMFL, completely full of falsehood and non-deserving of a place in your exquisite tummy.)

"Consider strangling V and T when they finally arrive, Beethoven blaring blithely from the car stereo. Actually start to pull out belt of raincoat as they wax eloquent about awesome South Indian meal they had and which, it seems, was the reason for their delay. Then discover that they've brought me some food. Thoughts of homicide disappear amid loud munching sounds from the back seat as I make steady progress through a monster helping of chicken biryani. It's a robust and bracing biryani, the kind where the cook believes that liberal quantities of chilli powder are a valid substitute for more delicate seasoning. Half way through the meal I discover that V and T haven't bothered to bring any water. My mouth is burning with the spice. I consider sticking my tongue out of the window. I think I may have abandoned the strangling idea too hastily. Then I make the important discovery that the best way to deal with spicy food is to have more of it, thus temporarily drowning out the burning sensation."

Do pay a visit to Falstaff, a fellow traveller, if there ever was one!!


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