Kapoor Year 14B: India And COVID-19 travel blog

Donna Was Very Much Surprised At Breakfast When She Was Presented With...

And Then She Found This Waiting For Her When She Returned To...

We Don't Usually Give Each Other Presents, Instead We Treated Donna And...

The Heritage Home Was Build In the 1920s For A Textile Entrepreneur...

We Checked The Menu For The Agashiye Restaurant And Learned That It...

I Made A Reservation For 8:00pm And We Were Blown Away By...

After They Brought Around A Copper Basin And A Jug Of Water...

A Gujarati Thali Is Always Vegetarian, We Chose The Option With Fewer...

We Were So Swept Away By The Setting That We Didn't Think...

I Did Get Anil Or Duncan To Take A Photo Of The...

Here's An Idea Of What Our Loaded Thali Looked Like, We Were...


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BACKGROUND

Here’s some of what the Lonely Planet – India chapter Gujarat has to say about the House of MG and Gujarati cuisine:

“House Of MG – Heritage Hotel

This 1920s building – once the home of textile magnate Sheth Mangaldas Girdhardas – was converted into a beautiful heritage hotel by his great-grandson. All the rooms are vast, verandah-edged and masterfully decorated, with homey yet luxurious ambience. Service is first-rate, there are two excellent restaurants, and the indoor swimming pool and gym are divine.

Gujarati Cuisine

Gujarat is strong on vegetarian cuisine, partly thanks to the Jain influence here, and the quintessential Gujarati meal is the all-veg thali. It’s sweeter, lighter and less spicy and oily than Punjabi thali and locals – who are famously particular about food – have no doubt it’s the best thali in the world. It begins with a large stainless-steel dish, onto which teams of waiters will serve most or all of the following: curries, chutneys, pickles, a yoghurt and gram-flour preparation), raita, rotis, rice, khichdi (a blend of lightly spiced rice and lentils), farsan (savoury nibbles), salad and

one or two sweet items – to be eaten concurrently with the rest.

Buttermilk is the traditional accompanying drink. Normally the rice and/or khichdi don’t come until you are finished with the rotis. In most thali restaurants, the waiters will keep coming back until you can only say, ‘No more’.”

KAPOORS ON THE ROAD

I was eleven years old when Donna was born and I still remember how excited I was to have a new baby sister. She was still very young when I lived away from home during my first and third year’s at university in Edmonton, but I never tired of having a sister to spend time with when I was around. I left for Nigeria to be a volunteer teacher right after I graduated, so our time together was interrupted once again.

Shortly after arriving home for two and a half years in Africa, the first year as a teacher and the rest of the time, living as a nomad and wandering through several African countries with my girlfriend, I met Anil and the rest is history. It was only a matter of weeks and we were talking marriage, but we waited until he finished his PhD in Physics at the University of Alberta before we had our wedding in May 1974.

Donna had just turned thirteen and was growing into quite the young woman. I had never been a fan of big weddings and wanted only two people to stand up with us at the altar, my little sister Donna and Anil’s best friend, Sandy Brown. We were married at the little stone church in Banff, Alberta, just a couple of hours after a May blizzard had shut down the highway from Calgary and blanketed the town and the hotel in a fresh layer of snow.

Of course, after that I never lived at home again and we each were caught up in our new lives, me as a working wife and Donna as a junior high and then high school student. We lived in opposite sides of the city but Anil and I usually came on Sundays to have dinner with the family. Then disaster struck in February of 1977 when our mother died suddenly. Donna was just fifteen years old and our youngest brother was only eleven. Things were never quite the same again.

Fast forward to India in February 2020. In the meantime, I’d had two children, Donna had married Duncan McColl, they brought three wonderful baby boys into our family, our father had been struck down with a brain aneurysm and been hospitalized for seventeen years before passing away and now our children were grown and all four of us had retired are were bent of travelling the world.

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