Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Stray Thoughts on a balmy winter day

Season to Love
Last year during Christmas I went to Arunachal Pradesh where I got a white carpet welcome…the roads, the rooftops, the trees everything was dressed in the purest and softest of white and if that was not enough heavens opened its doors to caress me with more whites. I enjoyed my experience with snowfalls and enjoyed not just its feathery touch but also the intricate design of snowflakes. All for the first time.
Snow is still away in Arunachal but winter has arrived in Assam and the greens have been replaced by the grey of dust (undesirably) and the chill in the year pleasanter (very favourable) and though I don't have the luxury of big garden or balcony and the privacy, I have big windows to let the sun fall on my naked legs. It is a soothing feeling, and the sun becomes the most loved thing in this season. It softly filters in warmth, love, calmness and contentment. Perhaps it is really a season of plenty and a season to love and savour the small pleasures and mercies of life. Like lazy coffee mornings with friends. Imagine the kick hot café mocha, with a lethal combination of caffeine and chocolate, can give. A walnut brownie or apple pie can be optional but some hot gossip and girlish giggles almost mandatory. Though I know I often can be only a listener and may sometimes have my throaty laugh.
And Punjabi friends or even friend ka friend ka friend (remember the Indian expertise in finding relations and friendship in strangers too), become so dearer at this time of the year. Aha the very though of it is ready to make me love them, befriend them and get oneself invited for sarson da saag and makki di roti. Believe me heaven is very near to a steaming bowl of saag, with lots of ginger and white butter served with ghee-soaked makki rotis with just a hint of methi in the batter to leaven the taste. Pao-bhaji, mooli paratha, gobhi paratha are next on the line though the bliss factor is little compromised.
Walks in a park, deserted roads and the Brahmaputra Boulevard with the sun shining down upon you and your iPod or Nature itself playing some favourite tunes in your ear is another winter pleasure. And to reward one self for the exercise one can surely sink the teeth on the best oranges from Shillong. Sweet, pulpy, juicy and loaded with vitamins.
The season invites for picnics, barbeques and al fresco eating. Pack your basket with pakoras, sandwiches, cheese, beer, wine, chocolate, fruits, cold meat any other treats and pack your family and friends into a large SUV and find a sunny spot, best next to some stream and green. Or if you are lucky enough to have a lawn, it’s the right time to make the best of it. A lawn serves its ultimate function around this time of the year- weekend brunches that lasts as long as the light and laughter do and if there is fire within and a bon fire outside, time does not play much shots.
And imagine the luxurious warmth of pashmina or fur against your skin. Time one owned all those items that makes one feel good. Some even revel at customized tailoring. And think of the joys of layering for a person like me. I mean sweaters that can go over shirt, jackets that go over waist coats and shawls that go over anything and all of it going over layers of flab. And remember you can go without the pains of waxing for these few months with no one noticing. Ok, agreed those in a new relationship can not enjoy this lazy, laidback mentality. But what we all can do is enjoy lazy lie-ins on the weekends. Snuggle deep and till late on the bed, sleep extra, linger and love and finally coax someone to get you a hot cup of tea or better still a wholesome breakfast on bed. A perfect beginning to a perfect day! And what a heavenly day one can have, on the terrace or the balcony, reading a book and feasting on roasted peanuts or spicy corns.
Evenings put on your boots over tights or skin-hugging leather pants and enjoy the sexy swagger in your walk to the club or disco. And then even if you care not much, you cannot miss the riot of colours in the form of plenty of flowers in parks and gardens, in terrace and balcony, along the roadside and roundabouts. What else one needs to warm up the hearts during the cold, winter season? 

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