February 28, 2009

Thank God its Friday

Shillu :: Meet Mangal - He serves drinks at a fun place. We were a hungry/starved ;-) bunch of 12 on a Friday evening & he ensured that we were all taken care of. He is really witty & strikes up a conversation with anyone. What caught my attention is his hat & the colorful buttons on his coat & the attitude with which Mangal carries himself. It took me sometime to convince him for this picture.

VJ :: One of my friends was buying a customized gourmet alcoholic beverage from one of the local stores and this is what caught my attention. The bottles come in varying sizes and proportions and the way they were displayed made all the difference. Even better, you also get to choose and taste the beverage that you want to buy..all in all a mind blowing experience.

February 26, 2009

Lights n Worms

VJ :: At a small roadside Italian restaurant in Stratford-upon-Avon, I spotted this unique looking light. What can I say, I thought, it perfectly complements the one uploaded by Shillu in the recent past.
Shillu :: What you see here is one step in the process of Sericulture (Silk farming). The white oval objects you see here are silk worm cocoons. The cocoon is made of a thread of raw silk from 300 to 900 meters (1,000 to 3,000 feet) long. The fibers are very fine and lustrous, about 10 micrometers (1/2,500th of an inch) in diameter. About 2,000 to 3,000 cocoons are required to make a pound of silk. Based on 1 kilometer (about 1,100 yards) per cocoon, ten unraveled cocoons could theoretically extend vertically to the height of Mount Everest!! (Source: Wiki)

February 25, 2009

Splash of colors

VJ :: The words inscribed on this door caught my attention. I stood there for a moment and later on concluded that each and every one of us either relate to or live by more than one of these words. Talk of window of vocabulary.
Shillu :: Colorful bangles (sort of Hand bracelets) that most Indians use to decorate their hands. Mostly these are matched with the color of the outfit one is wearing. This picture was taken at a bangle stall in one of the handicraft exhibitions I visited last weekend. Most of these bangles you see are made of Lacquer and adorned with beads, glitter & mirrors.

February 23, 2009


Its been a great week! First- VJ got promoted. Then,
A R Rahman wins the Oscar for his music in Slumdog Millionaire*.
!!Congratulations VJ & A R Rahman!!
*I am a die-hard fan of Rahman & I like the music of SM. However, I think he has composed much better music than SM- read as Roja, Donga Donga(Thiruda, thiruda in Tamil), Vande mataram etc., I am not complaining, at the end none of those movies would have earned him this honour as they would only qualify in the foreign film category. I am so happy that he won such a well deserved award!!

February 18, 2009

Pic too gloomy? here you go - a Bright one!

VJ :: Making our way out of London was nearly impossible. This was the time when everything around us was freezing and my friends and I, were in a car enjoying good music and company.

Shillu :: Couple of things about me - I am learning 2 things : Cooking & photography, not good with either yet. I will get there soon, so requesting you to bear with my experiments till then. Here is a picture of peas & peanut rice I made with brown rice as a snack one evening. This is tempered with onions, mustard seeds, cumin & garnished with coriander.

February 17, 2009


VJ :: I am sure you are aware that after 18 long years, London was buried under a thick blanket of snow. some of the next images are from that day when London was painted in the shades of black and white.
Shillu :: Cup & saucer shaped light holders in a food court close to work. Nice concept - apt for the place. Click on the picture for a closer look.

February 16, 2009

Powerhouse of politics

VJ :: House of Parliament- Shillu has been bringing pictures that displayed Indian architecture, so I thought I should also present a section of the Houses of Parliament- an example of English Architecture.

Shillu :: Karnataka Vidhana Soudha - is located in the state capital of Bangalore. This building houses the state legislative assembly of Karnataka. The style of construction incorporates Indo-saracenic, Rajasthani Jharokha and Dravidian styles - described as "Neo-Dravidian" style. This granite building was completed in 1956. What you see in the picture is the main entrance. You an see a four headed lion on top of the dome. This lion is the symbolic representation of India's sovereignty. My favourite part of this picture is the birds in the air & India flag flying proudly on top of the building.

February 15, 2009

Munch your way thru a freezing day

VJ :: Making our way out of London was nearly impossible. This was the time when everything around us was freezing and my friends and I, were in a car enjoying good music and company. Snow- This is the way I walk to work everyday, but that day was a special day as I walked on snow and practically set my foot on snow for the first time ever.

Shillu :: VJ - Here are some homemade rice crackers to compliment the weather there. We call these "Chekkalu" in Telugu. Popular snack in south India, made with rice flour, ginger, green chillies, curry leaves, onions, Chana dal & deep fried. Got a very delicious batch from my mother-in-law's house. Enjoy the snow while I munch away these yummy snacks ;-)

February 14, 2009

Happy Valentines Day

Love is not blind,

Love sees but does not mind.



February 13, 2009

Travel journals

VJ :: I once remember answering a quiz question in my school- world's biggest clock- The Big Ben and now I can confirm that I have seen it and this is the evidence.
Shillu :: Some time back I went on a short holiday to Srilanka with my friends. We dined at a very beautiful restaurant on the 11th floor overlooking the sea. Here is the picture of the coastline thru the restaurant window (glass pane). If you look closely you can see a railway track - there is a train that runs along the coast - sounds like a unique experience,don't you think so?

February 12, 2009


VJ :: Standing by The Thames - on a chilly winter afternoon, I was admiring the way this walking path is designed and the way a row of lamp posts are adorning the path. Simply superb- was my first reaction.
Shillu :: The building peeping through these two buildings is my office. I have taken this pic from across the road. There is a small lake in between the road & the buildings which cannot be seen in this picture

February 10, 2009

Spicy Indulgence

VJ :: Soup & Bread This evening my friend Lakshmi, made Thai vegetable soup and I baked garlic and oregano bread rolls. We had a great meal followed by a chocolate chip mocha cake. All this to complement the snowy weather that London experienced. If you are looking for a recipe, do not hesitate to ask.

Shillu :: Super delicious Gutti Vankaya Koora (Cluster eggplant curry) made by Mom. Like all mom's, my mom is a great cook too & this is my all time favourite curry. I request mom to make this for all special occasions. This curry has loads of Indian spices & it takes reasonable amount of preparation time. Some of the ingredients that go into the gravy - Roasted Peanut powder, Roasted til seeds, Dry coconut powder, red chillies, Ginger, Garlic, Tamarind, onion paste, coriander, garam masala & more....Phew! But trust me - Its definitely worth the effort! Miss you Tulasi - Come soon :(

February 9, 2009


VJ :: Yesterday evening I went to take a ride on the London Eye. Due to poor visibility, I decided otherwise and ended up taking pictures. I spotted this person playing trumpet under the suspension bridge by the London Eye. What else, I watched him play and captured him in action.
Shillu :: Elephant spotted in a wild life preserve in south India.

February 8, 2009

Specks of yellow

VJ :: One of my recent pictures was about breakfast. By now, you must have guessed that I am a foodie. I love eating, cooking and also doing food photography. This was my morning breakfasts one of these days: Home made hash brown potatoes served with multi-grain bread, cheese and broccoli omelette with a dollop of ketchup. Bon appetit!

Shillu :: Sunflower fields in an Indian village as seen thru the window of a train. I loved the colorful landscape & luckily was able to take this pic from a moving train with my point&shoot. Surprising that the pic looks decent. Have a "bright" day.

February 7, 2009

Fine Dining

VJ :: A perfect evening: Place: A local Italian Restaurant. A couple of my friends and I went to this restaurant here in London for some nice Italian pasta followed by a generous portion of Tiramisu. The tables were set to welcome guests for that evening!
Shillu :: Spicy crisp chilli babycorn garnished with ground black pepper & spring onions. Perfect starter for a delicious meal. The highlight of the dish is the beetroot carving.

February 5, 2009

Divine intervention

Shillu :: Another temple in Karnataka state (South India) - Simhachala swamy temple. Don't you love the details in white?
VJ :: God's miracle, one pleasant evening at South end- on- Sea. Taken on my trip to South end with friends, an hour and half away from London, this is a small coastal town with hustle and bustle.

February 4, 2009

What lies within

VJ :: Lal Darwaaza (Means "red door" in Hindi) : Every morning, when I walk past this door on my way to work, I stop for a moment and make an unfulfilled promise to take a picture of it. There is nothing special about the door, I was telling shillu this morning that it is not great, but I must admit that there is something about this door that appeals to me. If ever I figure out, I will let you know for sure.
Shillu :: Stone sculpture of Goddess Padmavathi inside the temple adorned with Kum-Kum (Red powder made from Turmeric or saffron) and flowers.

February 3, 2009

A miniature plan & some wires

Shillu :: I am back to my temple series. this is a miniature carving on the temple wall. Looks like the sculptor first made this miniature & then put his plan to work on the roof of the main temple. Brilliant planning & execution, don't you think so?
VJ :: Weird Wired World- this picture was taken on my trip to Greenwich museum. We live in such a wired world today that I cannot imagine anything without wires, wires and more wires.

February 2, 2009

Love for peppers

VJ :: Peppers- Bell Peppers . In search for food, my camera captured this in a local vegetable store. I liked the combination of yellow and green.


Shillu :: While VJ & I were doing hotel management, I was assigned to make mint chutney for the kitchen class & I got all the ingredients wrong and finally the chutney had too many chillies and very less mint. It almost tasted like chilli paste. One of our classmates ate a little of it & screamed in the cafeteria saying "who made this chutney?" I confidently (and a little proudly) claimed that I made it. He said your name should not be Sireesha, you are "Chilli-sha".

I love the splash of colors here. This picture was taken at the weekly farmers market in downtown Minneapolis.