Vietnam is an interesting country. Born out of the grit, perseverance and so much violence. The country offers you so much to experience.
The insane traffic and two wheelers
Vietnam is full of two wheelers, in different shapes and sizes. And the traffic that comes along with it.
If you love coffee, Vietnam is a must visit place. The cities ( Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City is full of cafes, serving all varieties of coffees you could ever imagine.
Vietnam was a french colony, before it was united after a violent war. You can see several buildings that was built the French. The Central post office of Saigon (Saigon later renamed as Ho Chi Minh City) is a building made in Gothic style. The churches at Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh are a visual treat.
Ha Long Bay, located in northeast Vietnam , is full of limestone islands surrounded by rainforests. A ride through these bay is very refreshing. A must visit if you want to be close to the nature.
The struggles, bloody coup, American occupation, effect of Napalm and agent Orange. Vietnam tells the story of grit, resistance and never ending fight for independence.
The Cu Chi tunnels are a network of 200 kms long tunnel system, used by Viet Cong fighters against the US army. A must visit if you want to know about the Vietnam war.
What i liked most about the Vietnamese is their never ending passion towards life and the importance they give for fitness. Visit Vietnam for the life lessons they offer you 🙂
As E. P Thompson rightly said, ” There is not a thought that is being thought in the West or East that is not active in some Indian mind”, Manu S Pillai’s latest book ” The Courtesan, the Mahatma and the Italian Brahmin: Tales from Indian History” is full of such wonderful people and their magnificent stories.
Whether its Nangeli in 1800s or Meerabai in 1500s, or many other lives thats been chronicled in the book, all are fascinating and sometimes inspiring. The book brings into life how wonderful and diverse the Indian heritage was. The many characters who shaped it, the Heroes and the Villains. The reformers and the rebels. Its a must read if you are a student of history and also if you are ready to get surprised and occasionally shocked.
What if someone promise you that they will home deliver farm fresh, organic products in competitive price? I am sure you will grab that opportunity right? I mean the biggest pain point for the people is to get fresh fruits and vegetables that is not be sprayed by pesticides. We are not sure from where these Veggies and fruits are coming, are they safe enough to consume? The pain of going to the store in this fast paced life is another story.
So my first experience with Foro Market, the recently launched online grocery store was memorable. Right from the Delivery person to packaging, hygiene and most importantly the freshness of the products, I am impressed 👍 lot of thought and care has gone into each and every process and customer delight is guaranteed.
So first the Foro Market app navigation is pretty simple and user friendly. Whether the signing in process, to adding items to the shopping cart and the checking out part. The entire process is seamless. Now the app is available in both
Customer Delight Executive
Delivery boys (At ForoMarket, they are called Customer Delight Executive) are the point of contact when comes to online shopping. Their behaviour makes a great difference in the overall experience. Subramaniam from foromarket was courteous, helpful and always had a smile on his face 🙂 Subramaniam is indeed a Customer Delight Executive.
Farm Fresh Products
All the products were delivered well packaged and came all farm fresh. Good experience I must say. The products are organic and the delivery is guaranteed the very next day the order is placed.
Foro Market: Shop Grocery On The Go
All the very best to the entire team You have earned a customer for life. So If you are in Chennai, I recommend to try out Foro Market , the latest entrant in the #online #grocery #shopping
Throughout his career, director Kamal has been known to pick up challenging topics in his films. Be it Perumazhakkalam or Karutha Pakshikal, his films dare to speak about things that often filmmakers won’t address. Even when it came to biopics, he brought in the same passion to tell important stories, such as that of J.C Daniel in “Celluloid” and now it is ‘Kamala Das’ in “Aami”.
Having recently seen rel=” nofollow” Aami on ZEE5, I thought it would be a good time to discuss elements of the film that really caught my eye.
Before that, one needs to know about the person it is based on – Kamala Das/Kamala Surraiya.
Madhavikutty / Kamala Suraiya
Kamala Suraiya, born as Kamala Das was a well known literary personality from Kerala, often bit controversial though in her writings and actions. She was born into a well-known family of literary personalities. Her mom Balamaniamma was also a well-known poet. Madhavikutty’s writing was always bold and honest. Few times her works’ and outlook attracted criticism from various quarters. Madhavikutty ran into controversy when she decided to accept Muslim faith, changing her name to Kamala Suraiya, at the age of 65.
Things that caught my eye in Aami
In Aami, Kamal went for the slightly slower narrative, a departure from his usual style. Considering how controversial Madhavikutty’s life was, the movie had a liberal dose of drama too. But what set it apart was the semi-fictional approach it went for. Just like Madhavikutty did in her autobiography Ente Kathe/My Story, director Kamal uses elements of fiction and fantasy to thoroughly explore ideas and themes that Madhavikutty stood for in her life.
The other main highlight of the film is Manju Warrier, for obvious reasons. She is a great performer and you could witness glimpses of that in so many occasions during the film. Manju has done full justice to the protagonist role of Kamala Das, breathing life to a layered character with finesse. Other actors that shine in this movie are Murali Gopy, who plays Kamala’s husband, Madhava Das and Tovino Thomas who plays Lord Krishna.
Also, the director was successful in recreating the bygone era. As the story travels to different places like Mumbai, Kolkata and rural Kerala in different eras, the world Kamala built felt very real in the movie. Major credit for that goes to the makeup and costumes which fit the period’s actual style.
The film, to a certain extent, justifies the life of Madhavikutty. Her conflicts, struggles and quest for true love. An interesting take on the film is the role of Tovino Thomas as Lord Krishna. As someone who is looked upto to fill the lonely void in her life, Madhavikutty always loved Lord Krishna. It is how Kamal captures this sense of loneliness within Madhavikutty is what stands out. Scenes between Kamala and the Krishna effectively showcase the inner struggles she goes through. Even, the songs have been well placed and add up the pace to the movie. Also, though the movie has a non-linear narration, the way Kamal narrates it makes it interesting.
In short, if you enjoy Kamal’s films and are curious to know about Madhavikutty’s life, watch Aami. This movie features one of Manju Warrier’s good performances in recent times.
Malayalam cinema has always had some incredibly talented actresses. The reason being, the industry has seen many films having strong and powerful female-oriented performances. If it was Sharada and Sheela in 1960-70s, Shoba dominated during 1970-80s. The 1990s saw some great performances from actresses like Shobana, Revathy, Urvashi and Manju Warrier. Meera Jasmine continued the trend in the 2000s and Parvathy can be considered as the one who can showcase fine acting in the present generation.
Last year, in 2017 Parvathy did her Bollywood debut in the super hit Romantic comedy film “Qarib Qarib Singlle” and now ZEE5, one of the leading OTT Platforms in India, is showing “Almost Single”, the Malayalam dubbed version of “Qarib Qarib Singlle”.
Right from her debut, Parvathy’s performance reminded me of some of the powerful performers like what I had mentioned earlier. Undoubtedly, we can say that Parvathy is one of the best performers Malayalam cinema has seen in recent times.
From the Teenage artist!
Right from the Notebook, the much-acclaimed Rosshan Andrrews film which dealt with the subject of teenage pregnancy where she played one of the three main characters, Parvathy’s career path was steady with good performances and many hits. She was also careful enough to choose films where she had the opportunity to perform. So if we look at her filmography, we can see so many power-packed performances – a luxury for today’s actresses.
There are many to choose from. There is the self-confident, wheelchair clad RJ Sarah and her search for true love in the super hit film Bangalore Days. Then, there is the curious girl who goes in search of a mysterious man in ‘Charlie’. She then transformed into the ever strong-willed “Kanchanamala” who sacrifices her life for her love “Moideen” played by Prithviraj ( I feel Prithviraj-Parvathy on-screen chemistry is the best) in the critically acclaimed movie “Ennu Ninte Moidheen” and the strong Malayalee Nurse struggling to escape war-torn Iraq during the ISIS era ( A true story) in “Take Off”.
When you look at her best performances, you see a pattern. In all her roles you see shades of the ever confident, strong and opinionated modern Malayalee woman.
Kannada, Tamil films
She was equally successful in other south Indian languages like Kannada and Tamil. Her role in the Tamil film “Maryan” where she paired against Dhanush, was especially a memorable one and she was applauded for her performance.
When you share screen space with an actor like Irrfan Khan who is an epitome of fine and natural acting, you need to be at your best and Parvathy has done just that in her Bollywood debut movie “Qarib Qarib Singlle”.
In the movie, Parvathy plays a widow leading a loveless, monotonous life and having all the insecurities of metro life. Through an online dating site, she meets this ever charming, happy-go-lucky man called Yogi played by Irrfan Khan. The movie is all about how they discover each other during their journey together. The script is the highlight of the movie where there are many hilarious situations during their journey together. The onscreen chemistry of Parvathy and Irrfan is also another highlight of the movie.
“Almost Single”, the Malayalam dubbed version of “Qarib Qarib Singlle” is now available in ZEE5. If you like Parvathy’s acting style (and I am sure you like Irrfan Khan), Almost Single is a must watch rom-com. I am sure you will love it.
Sumeru Frozen Foods, who is changing the face of how frozen food is perceived and consumed by catering to the new age ‘Fast & Fit’ consumer , has recently launched Michelin star Alfred Prasad Gourmet Range of Dishes in a Gala event at Chennai. The event was witnessed by the Who’s who of Chennai.
Association with Michelin star Alfred Prasad!
Alfred Prasad was the youngest Indian to have a Michelin star at the age of 29, and he retained the accolade at Tamarind for12 years. He is on of the most celebrated Chef across globe, chef kitchen curator for Lords stadium and a very active member & contributor to Great British Chef(GBC). He is also well known for his social work in many countries including India, is ambassador for foodcycle (working against food wastage ) and had raised money for Action against Hunger in Rajasthan.
Now AP range is a unique and never tried before attempt not only in Frozen food but in any food category in India upliftingBrand Sumeru way above the competitions. It follows Chef Alfred philosophy of 3 H’s “Health, Heritage & Happiness. The cooking process & unique packaging technology (IQF) ensure nutrients & flavors are retained. All the ingredient used are fresh, locally sourced and personally chosen by Chef Alfred Prasad. And another point to be noted is there are no added color, flavors or preservatives
I am sure that Alfred Prasad’s range of signature dishes from Sumeru will take the consumer experience for frozen food to a different level.
Dental care is something we take it for granted. Most of us hardly take care of our dental health, until it starts hurting.
Now Dental care or Oral care is all about keeping your teeth and mouth clean. Most common and practised way isbrushing teeth regularly, at least twice a day.It is also advisable to have a dental checkup done once insix months.
Lot of dental care depends on what we eat and how we clean our mouth after that. We use various methods to clean , be it tooth pastes or mouth wash or any other ways.Usage of Toothpicks also helps in cleaning the teeth, especially after a meal or so. I recently come across Krop Toothpicks and found it interesting, you know how?
Its a multipurpose one, Krop toothpicks can be used for cleaning the teeth and also can be chewed. Yeah its Herbal Chewing Picks. It is a mouth freshener and are available in 3 different flavours Clove, Cinnamon and Mint.
Essential oils are used in Krop Toothpicks, which stop tooth decay now I have become a fan of this herbal toothpicks.
If you ask me name that one industry which is ever growing, I would say Media & Entertainment, especially in the last one decade, we have seen so many platforms and players emerging. The DTH penetration in India has also gone high.
Tata Sky is the leading DTH service prover in India.My association with Tata Sky goes back right from the time the switch happened from cable TV to the DTH.I am quite happy with various packages they offer and the wide range of channels they have.Now Tata Sky has come up with a exclusive channel for Tamil movies named “ Tata Sky Tamil Cinema”. Now its a great news for movie buffs like me. Currently, the DTH operator has four regional movies services namely Tata Sky Telugu Cinema, Tata Sky Marathi Cinema, Tata Sky Bangla Cinema and Tata Sky Punjab De Rang.
Tata Sky launched their new exclusive channel for Tamil films at a Gala event on 11th October. During the launch , Mr. Arun Unni, Chief Content Officer shared some interesting insights and stats about the TV viewership population in Tamil Nadu. According to him, close to 95 percent of population has got TV at home.When it comes TV viewership, South India is far ahead from rest of India. The DTH viewership is also ever increasing and there is a huge market for regional movies, especially Tamil and Telugu movies. The new exclusive channel for films will cater to this market.
Ad free channel, thats real Jingalala moment!
Yes, the channel won’t have any ads, thats a welcome relief right 😀 and Tata Sky Tamil Cinema is priced Rs 45 per month and you get to see the latest releases.
With this new channel, I am sure Tata Sky is going toexpand its subscriber base in Tamil Nadu.
When was the last time you took out your differently abled friend / relative for a movie or for a coffee? before that, do you have a friend like that? at your work place / school or college? I never had. We rarely see them in a any of the public spaces right? in a movie theatre or a mall. They are the largest invisible group of people in the world. Would you believe if i tell you that there are 200 Million differently abled people in India?
So whats stopping them from venturing into the mainstream? is it their physical disability? Not really. Its the attitude or outlook of the other majority thats stopping them to come out.
Every day Ability organised a scuba diving session for the differently abled friends in Chennai. The idea was to bring out people and given them new experiences. The event was well organised. The participants experienced how it is to be under water. Most of them have never been this close to water.
The organisation is carrying various outdoor activities across India for the differently abled people. Over the years there has been a sea of change in the outlook of general public towards the differently abled community. The Scuba Diving trainer interacting with the participants and you can see all are very much thrilled!
So When was the last time you wore a shirt customised for you? For me it was during school days 🙂 mainly before the commencement of the school after the summer holidays.Going to the local tailor shop was fun, that was the only time we used to get an idea about the latest fashion trends, tailor was our hero. He knew so many things about various styles of shirting, which hero wears what style and all.
Times changed. The era of ready -made shirts came. It was a big rage, so many varieties, trends and styles. But the fun of whole process of making your own shirt had gone.
Bombay Shirt Company
Recently I came to know about the Bombay Shirt Company and how they customise shirts. I got curious and decided to visit the outlet.
This is the story of my Shirt!
The Level of Customisation.
I was surprised by the level of customisation Bombay Shirt Company offers. Right from fabrics (both Indian and International brands) to Collars, Buttons, Leather, Twill tapes and Suede. You get a good amount of choices to pick in these various categories. Enough options to choose!
So I spent a good amount of time, going through all the options and designed my shirt.
The experience was great, the staff were courteous and helpful. And here I am proudly wearing the shirt i designed. at the Bombay Shirt Company, Adyar outlet.