“I'm in this boat alone, floating down a river named emotion”

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Will I make it back to shore
Or drift into the unknown

I'm floating down a river
Oars freed from their holds long ago
Lying face up on the floor of my vessel
I marvel at the stars
And feel my heart overflow
Further down the river
Further down the river
Further down the river
Further down the river
Two weeks without my lover

I’m going to start off this blog with a brrrrrr! The temperature is below freezing and I want winter to end already. As I mentioned Bhatji has been very sick and I have been playing “mommy” to him. As much as I enjoy taking care of people….it can get a little overwhelming; let’s just that I have a new found respect for nurses. On a positive note I am very happy that it is a long weekend and am looking forward to the 2 weeks in NJ. I am also happy that we were around my parents this weekend who basically did a lot of the running around and preparing Kichadi and Nimbu Sharbat for Bhatji. He is definitely doing better than earlier in the weekend but not a complete 100% yet. He has been sleeping in and trying to get his fever down. As long as he rests, eats some home made food and continues his medications and home made remedies…I think he will be up and about in no time
This weekend I thought about my bapama (my dads mom who passed away when I was 13) who didnt beleive in modern day medication of any kind and depended solely on herbal medication. She was well known for a garden full of herbal plants and her Ayurvedic knowledge. Be it a common cold or arthritis pain….she had a plant and a remedy for it all. These home made remedies didn’t always sound, smell or taste appetizing but they worked quite well. She was a strong believer in natural healing and there are times like today that I wished I had taken interest in her teachings and picked up all her remedies. But I was too young and impatient when she was around. I think it’s hard to grow an impressive garden such as my grandmothers here in the US. The winters are too cold for some of the tropical plants and I think we also lack in time and energy to tend a garden. Back in India we had hired a mali (gardener) who would take care of the garden 3-4 times a week. But it was my grandmother’s love that really made our garden a medical treasure. Well I can’t entirely say that I didn’t learn anything. I learned that ginger was a life providing root. It relives pains and if added to a hot drink is soothing for a congested chest…which makes it perfect for colds. Garlic is another spice that provides cures for heart problems, diabetes and if cooked and added to rice makes for a fever reducer. There were many other home remedies that I can recall and I think I will write about each of them in a journal soon. But I see that as our days and lives get busy, all these remedies take a back seat to pills and antibiotics because they are easily obtainable and are also quickly effective. However their effect is short term with certain side effects and we are too short sighted to see this as an issue. I am trying to get better at eating and drinking healthier rather than popping a Tylenol for each and every pain. So when Bhatji fell sick…it was easy for me to pump him with different kinds of pills…my ma however, has been trying home remedies. We boiled hot water and added eucalyptus oil in it and had him steam his face so that his nasal passages would open up. We’ve made him hot tea with ginger and pepper to ease his sore throat and decongest his chest. Another dish that we have prepared for him is my moms simple Kichadi (boiled lentils, rice and lots of pepper) because it easy for digestion and pepper helps with decongestion. In addition we made him a big batch of my moms Nimbu Sharbat (lemon drink) with lots of ginger to ease his congestion, the elaichi clears his nasal passages and the lemon boosts his immune system with vitamin c. I think that these remedies do work….slowly….but I can definitely see a difference in Bhatji. This brings me to the foodie part of the blog. My mom’s nimbu sharbat is just toooo tempting not to blog about. You know how certain drinks or foods remind of you being sick…well ma’s nimbu sharbat is one of those drinks that you crave all the time…no matter the weather or your well being. So I am sharing this recipe for my ma’s limbiya/nimbu sharbat:

Juice of 1 large lemon or lime (or 2 small lemon and lime)
1 ½ inch piece of ginger
5-6 tsp of sugar (more or less to your taste)
2 tsp of salt (more or less to your taste)
2 pieces of cardamom (elaichi)
2 cups of water
3-4 cubes of ice

To Make:
Juice the lemon/lime into a glass, fish out the seeds and set aside. Add the ginger and cardamom in a food processor/mixie and grind well. Add the cubes, lime juice, water, salt and sugar and grind further until all of the ingredients are blended well. Keep in mind that there will be ginger pieces visible. You will need to sieve this mixture once more to separate the ginger and cardamom pieces and serve.

Bhatji has been putting away about 3 glasses a day so far. Once I get back to NJ…I will probably make a large jar of nimbu sharbat so that he will get his daily vitamin c intake until he is fully recovered. I am looking forward to going back to my kitchen and whipping up some new recipes that I learned from my mom. She also gifted me her very first cook book and I am very excited about trying a few dishes out from that as well. Alright that’s it for this blog entry…I have a sick hubby to feed. Until the next blog entry…stay warm and healthy!!

PS (Photography by Swati Shenoy. I love my super talented lil sis :o)


Sheets said...

First off... I hope Bhatji really is feeling better. The cold he's fighting (at least based on your description), is all over the continent!

Second... I was totally opening this window to ask about the beautiful picture you took! Way to use the new camera and excellent skills Swatz!

As for aruvedic therapy. I went through school as a pharmacology major and even though I am... I am sooo weary of drugs. I wish there was more of an emphasis here on natural things and working with your body rather than doping it up. Good for you for learning as much as you did! I hope you continue to share!

archana said...

dude, i was just sick for 2 weeks and ALL i drank was sharbat and kashai! is that the tea with ginger and pepper you're referring to? mmmm it's freezing outside and i could go for a cup right now :)

hope Bhatji feels better soon!

AnuZi said...

Bhatji is doing better...Cant say the same for myself...I've caught what he had....but not as bad. I've started up on the hot drinks, ginger and lime intake so I hope I'm a 100% soon. And I am trying to go the natural route for myself hehe...will keep you posted on how to goes.

Actually Kashai is just the chai masala minus the tea powder. My bapama used to add tea to it and call it chai kashai. I hope you are feeling better! Bhatji is...me not so much. wish me luck and a speedy recovery :o)

Siri said...

Hey Anu,

Wish I cud have a glass of Nimbu pani..I just love it.. :))

and I am glad to let u know that I am back from my break.. ya, I know I am back pretty soon.. but what to do yaar.. was missing blogging too much!

take care n cya


Bhatji said...

Limbu sharbat is my elixir of life!!!

Pooja said...

Nice to read the initia lines , you seems a romatic person , and after reading the post ,when i came to comment i see bhatji's comment for you :) , so sweet.
hope he will get well soon , stay tuned buddy...

Anonymous said...

lol bhatji commented with the username bhatji. hahaha. aww look at you showin me love despite me being such a moody photographer =) miss you anuuu... move back to pentagon city so i can crash on your futon when i get sick of home =D

AnuZi said...

Glad to have you back :o)

Awww tanx for the lovely compliments. I am sending you my entry. Sorry I am sick but once I am all well I will go more detailed with the recipe

Once I get better there'll be more nimbu sherbat :o)

Come to NJ...you have a futon with your name on it ;o)

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