South Indian Food: A Few Favorites

So you think Indian food is just chicken tikka masala and palak paneer?  Think again.

Recently, I’ve settled into a familiar morning routine: a masala dosa and sweet milk coffee in a simple canteen just down the street.  Attendants make their rounds with metal pails full of sambar and colorful wet chutneys, ensuring that all customers have ample supply, more than enough to eat.

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Microfinance Diaries: Seeing is Believing in West Bengal

The driver carved his way across northern West Bengal through territory unknown to most, including the mapmakers. Our SUV eventually rolled to a stop at the end of a dirt road where a group of village women dressed in their best and brightest saris were seated in a semi-circle on the ground. They had been waiting for hours.

And they were waiting for us.

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What India Taught Me: A Taxi Nightmare and Where Lost Baggage Goes to Die

First Trip to India, What to Expect

To say that you’ve seen the world before seeing India is like saying you know yourself before taking a good long look at your naked body in the mirror.

Author's Note: As we begin to write about our last visit to India in greater depth, I’m reminded of my first trip there — also my first trip abroad that I took solo in 1997. Those were the days of traveler’s checks, thick stapled wads of Indian rupees, and exorbitantly priced, poor quality phone calls booked from telephone wallahs on the street. The ATM machines, internet cafes and easy-to-purchase mobile phone SIM cards of today’s India seemed only a pipe dream back then.

This chronicles the bizarre experiences and lessons – about India, travel and me – that first visit imparted. No other trip since has affected me in quite the same way.

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Lunch with Friends in Chandigarh: Methi Muttar Malai and Aloo Gobi

Not long after breakfast, we were sitting with Sharan and his business partner Rajiv, our previously virtual friends. They were the reason we had come to Chandigarh. Sharan had completed a small software project for me (to help put the finishing touches on our photo gallery) the year before. After the project, Sharan and I continued to stay in touch.

When he found out we were coming to India, we received an invitation to visit.

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