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Trip to St.Louise

We visited St. Louise, MO in Labor day, 2011. This is the link to post in my travel blog.

Trip to Niagara

We have visited Niagara two times. With my in-laws first time and and with my parents next time. I have posted about the first trip in my travel blog.

This post is for “Koththu” loving Sri Lankans who live abroad. I am sure you are missing this delicious food unless you can find Sri Lankan restaurants in your area. Well, I am one of them. I was dying for a real Koththu till I find this easy way to make Koththu at home. Before that I tried few methods but didn’t succeed much. One way was making “Godamba roti” by hand and then making Koththu from it.  But making Godamba roti is very time consuming and is not that easy. At least it is not practical for busy people.

So we found a good substitution for Godamba roti. It is “Paratha”. If you live in US then you can easily find these in “Patel Brothers” or any Indian store in your area. I am not aware of the stores in other countries but I think it would be possible to find some kind of Paratha. This is the brand I use.

 

paratha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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So, here goes the recipe.

—————What you need———————-

*  Parathas (4 or 5 for two person)

* 2 eggs

* Chopped onion

* Curry leaves

* Chopped carrot and leeks

* Ginger garlic paste

* Chili pieces

* Mustard seeds

* Salt

* Soy sauce

* Oil to fry

Well, this is an egg koththu recipe. If you like to add some chicken or fish that would add more taste.

——————Method————————–

1. First fry the parathas (normally it has the instructions on the cover). Cut the fried parathas into small pieces. The smaller the pieces are your koththu will be more tasty.

2. Then heat up a pan and put about 2-3 table spoons of oil.  Give time to heat up and put some mustard seeds.

3. Put ginger garlic paste and 2 table spoons of chili pieces (amount is up to you). Wait till chili pieces get little bit dark.

4. Put  chopped onion and curry leaves. Put some salt to absorb. Fry a little bit.

5. Put the chopped carrot and leeks. Add salt to absorb. Keep it few minutes on heat, stirring.

6. Put 2 eggs and stir.

7. Before the mixture gets dry put paratha pieces and stir well.

8. Put some soy sauce.

9. Taste it and adjust salt taste as you want (you can add chili powder and pepper too but I don’t like adding them)

10. Let it be on high heat for few minutes.

11. Serve hot.

koththu

We planned a 3 day visit to Seattle, WA (to brother-in-law’s place) in March 2011. Well, I have posted about the Seattle visit in my travel blog and here I am going to write about the fun I had with American Airlines while traveling there.

I had to fly there alone as my husband (Saliya) traveled there a day before for a conference. I was to leave from Indianapolis, IN airport on Friday evening and arrive in Seattle on the same night. Well, it was one hell of a trip. My route was Indy to Chicago and Chicago to Seattle. First I got to know that my flight to Chicago is going to be delayed by one hour when I arrived at Indy airport. It was a 1 hour transit in Chicago. So I was kinda worried and asked the American Airlines officer at the gate, what will happen next? She told me that I would still be able to catch the next flight as it departs from the same terminal and same concourse and the flight from Indy to Chicago will take only 45 min (not 1 hr). So I thought ok, I’ve got 15 minutes for the transit then. Fair enough.

However the flight got delayed another 15 min to take off. The passengers were worried and stewardess told us not to worry because the flight will take only 35 minutes. Ok again, fair enough!! Finally…the flight was on a runway of Chicago airport after 35 minutes. Ok cool it worked, I wanted to quickly get out of the plane and run to the next gate from which Seattle flight departs, but wait…..our flight stopped in the middle of nowhere. We didn’t get a gate for clearance :shock:. The stewardess announced that we have to wait like 20 minutes till we get a gate to get off. The passengers got pissed off at this time and some told that they will never fly with American Airlines(AA) again. Everyone was worried about the flights they have to catch and finally stewardess checked with the airport and announced……

Flight to Korea is gone……

Flight to Seattle is gone……and the list went on.

Finally…everyone’s hopes had gone:). If I am correct we had to wait about 45 minutes till we get a gate. Seriously, why can’t they provide a ladder or something to get off if we like and show us some way out? :razz:. However finally we got a gate and got out tired and disappointed. It was around 10 p.m. then. Oh!! the Chicago airport was not the same as what I’ve seen in day time. It was so deserted and I got to know that there is no other flight till next morning. Actually it was a situation to panic for a novice girl like me…but, don’t know why I didn’t. I was more thinking of how to write a blog, pointing at American Airlines :). Certainly, it was their fault.

So I followed the other passengers to an AA counter. They decided to give us coupons for dinner, breakfast and for a hotel room to spend the night. Saliya insisted me(via phone) not to go to the hotel by a taxi because we can’t trust taxi drivers in Chicago. Spending the night in that deserted airport was not practical either. So I was waiting in the line to get the coupons and to ask about transportation options too. My husband, parents, brother-in-law and friends were always in contact with me via phone. So I didn’t feel alone, the only thing was we were apart from hundreds of miles :D. Our friends in Bloomington wanted to drive there too. It was so good of them but seriously? now they are the ones who should pay for what American Airlines did :roll:? No way!!  So anyway we decided to wait and see what the officer says.

Ok, I asked her whether I can get a hotel nearby so that I can walk. She checked and yes, there was this Hilton hotel next to the airport (It was the only good happened for the day). So I walked there carrying my heavy laptop and the hand luggage. It was a long way but good thing was that I could reach the hotel from inside of the airport. Finally I arrived in my room and informed everyone that I am safe though I was half dead by that time :mrgreen:. Hmm…what a day!!

Anyway..the next day was good. Everything went right. I could catch the flight to Seattle in the morning and arrived there on time.

ICC cricket World cup final, 2011 was held in Mumbai, India on last Saturday, 2nd of April. The qualified teams were Sri Lanka and India. We all Sri Lankans had high hopes on the World cup. We all thought that the team would bring the cup home. Obviously the Indians thought the same. Anyway just one team could win and that was lucky India.

India performed really good. Bowling and fielding were great. In my view what Sri Lanka missed was the team spirit. There were several reasons for that. First they did a huge change in the team at the last moment (four players were replaced). So it is obvious that they lacked the proper coordination.  Then the bowlers didn’t succeed. The newly added players Nuwan Kulasekara, Thisara Perera and Suraj Randiv were not much successful in bowling. But it is not their fault. As I believe the fault was to do such a vast change in the team for the finals.  They couldn’t get enough wickets.We can’t put every responsibility on Malinga’s and Murali’s shoulders. So they couldn’t get the job done alone without help from the other bowlers. Next thing was fielding. Simply it was pathetic compared to Indian team. They could have blocked many boundaries, missed an important catch. This could have been a win for Sri Lanka if the fielding was good. At last there was no luck with us. Angelo Mathews got injured and that’s why he was replaced. Murali was having a leg injury. So he was not able to do his best and it was a huge loss for the team. All these facts led us  to a defeat. Yes it was painful. We didn’t lose hope till it comes to last few overs but finally India won by 6 wickets. Sri Lanka lost finals last time (2007) to Australia, but it was not this painful. Maybe it’s because we knew that we got defeated that day not because of the team or bad performance, it was rain and bad luck. But this time we could have done better. Things just went wrong.

So this is the 2nd vice championship we won consecutively. It is a great achievement anyway. Apart from that, there were some important and historical moment through out this tournament. The most important thing was Murali’s (Sri Lanka) departure from International cricket. Muttiah Muralitharan nicknamed as “King of Spin” is the greatest spinner ever in the planet, and the highest wicket taker in both test and ODI.  So Murali said good bye to International cricket after the tournament. Also it was Sachin Tendulkar‘s(India) last Worldcup tournament. So one great bowler and another great batsman ended their world cup cricket careers together. Scott Styris (Newzealand), one of the cricketers I liked from my childhood, also ended his career with semi finals of this tournament. Well, it happened to end with Murali’s last ball in Sri Lanka. After the tournament, Sri Lanka team captain Kumar Sangakkara announced his retirement from captaincy.

Afterall it has been a great and eventful tournament though we lost the championship. I know everyone did suffer. The team, people, everyone did. But they admit it with patience. They dearly welcomed the team home as always and let the team know that they are still their heroes. We saw  that how much the disappointed team appreciated their love and humanity. At that moment I realized that there is much more to feel in defeating too……unity, humanity, love and affection.  Well, that is Sri Lankan identity. They just lost the cup but they never lose their dignity.

So I am wishing the team a fruitful future, you are really capable of bringing the 2015 cup home. Best of luck. and finally……..Hats off to the great nation with patience…no matter what they have the strength to take it humbly. If they lose, they do it in style…. & that’s why this nation doesn’t lose their dignity !!! Proud to be Sri Lankan !!!

I used to read Nelum Vila since I was 15 or so. It used to be the first article I search for, once I get Sunday “Silumina” on my hand.

Nelum Vila is made of small stories sent by our own people describing  their life experiences.  Some of these are written to pay tribute to someone. Sometimes we get unexpected help from strangers and we don’t even get a chance to thank them. The people seek the help of Nelum Vila to thank them. I have seen such incidents and sometimes the helper also responds after seeing the note in Nelum Vila. I can imagine how someone feels when he see a true praising for him/her.

Sometimes people write the things they couldn’t express to anyone and were used to be in their deep mind. I am sure they get a real relief because of Nelum Vila. People sometimes write really sensitive life experiences of them. All of them are true and heart touching. Honestly I’ve got my eyes wet while reading some of these articles. Sometimes I realize how beautiful is the world we live. It is full of love and true humanity. We just don’t have time to see it or that beautiful side of the world is hidden because of few contaminated minds, politics and all the buzz words. We all have that humanity hidden somewhere in us and this Nelum Vila is a clear reflector of that humanity which is the most essential part of “Human definition” .

Nelum Vila is a real lotus pond which lets the flowers come out of the mud. Thanks to online archives of Silumina, I can read all Nelum Vila archives now. So just make it a habit, read it and feel it. You’ll realize how many beautiful minds live around us. Most importantly you’ll realize how much humanity left in your mind yet.

1. Prison Break – Liked season 1 a lot and was eagerly waiting for Season 2. Season 2 was no longer a “prison break” itself but liked it. Watched Season 3 withing one day. When it comes to season 4 I was too tired of it by that time (this time I started too early so didn’t get all the episodes at once. Had to wait week by week). Also the story has become kinda elastic and was not much interesting. So I gave up!! and decided to watch season complete series’s only.  – 4 seasons

2. Cosby Show – Well, it is a very old series (comedy n family) I remember some of the scenes from this series I had watched when I was a kid. I liked this series a lot as it was a funny, emotional(sometimes) and realistic family story. It was so interesting to watch how the kids grow up through out the seasons. – 8 seasons

3. Lost – I’d say I got lost in this series. It was that much interesting. The story was well built in a mysterious, thrilling  way which can blow up your curiosity but the bad thing is it didn’t end well. Many of the mysteries didn’t resolve. So I was kinda disappointed at the end.- 6 seasons

4. Small Ville – I loved this series during it’s first few seasons. Adventurous, sci fi  super hero stories with a sense of romance. However it became bit too complicated and elastic in it’s later seasons. Some interesting characters totally disappeared and totally new faces were introduced as some leading characters. Characters and environment became upside down. Anyway it is true that it is difficult to have a smooth flow for 10 seasons. In fact this is a success in that way. – 10 seasons

5. Wonder Years – This is one of the best series’s I have ever watched. It is a family story built around a kid named Kevin. I am sure that anyone from any age would love this. This story will bring you to your childhood, of course if you had a really good one 🙂 The story is so realistic and natural. You’ll realize how much you love your childhood after watching this. Happiness, sorrow, guilt, fun, love, you name it…the story contains all those.  I never got tired watching this. I really like if it ran for another few seasons. This is a bit old series though. I guess it was telecast in 80’s but still it is kind of a legend. – 6 seasons

6. How I Met Your Mother – This series is super fun. I don’t think I should use more words to tell that. I loved each and every character in it. Liked the way that the stories have been built. Basically, it is a nicely done series. The stories are not much attached to each other so someone can even peep in the middle and enjoy few episodes too. I just completed watching season 7 and I guess there is two more season to come. Hmm have to wait another year… – 9 Seasons (Hopefully). P.S Yep, it’s over. I didn’t like the end though .

7. Big Bang Theory – I didn’t start to like it till I watch first few episodes. However it became one of my favorites with time. It may not be suitable to watch with your kids/parents but as far as the audience fits, this is a great series. I started to like even the pretty annoying character, “Sheldon”.  ..7 Seasons (so far)

8. Two and a Half Men – This is also a comedy which is bit similar to above two. It’s a grate series though again, you have to choose the audience. Currently the season 10 is being telecast. Not sure how much to come…11 Seasons (so far)

9. According to Jim – This is a great comedy show which can be considered as a family show. It’s kinda old but I really liked it. The show has kids in it and the show is mainly about their daddy (Jim). It is season complete…8 Seasons.

10. Breaking Bad – This is something different from the other shows I’ve watched so far. It is kinda violent and includes suspense. However I like the story line and the curiosity it makes. It is about a chemistry teacher who starts drug manufacturing, after finding out that he is suffering from a cancer. His original intention was to make some money for his family before he dies but it is not that simple. There is no coming back when you are inside the pit. This is season complete…5 Seasons

11. 24 – I’d describe this as a “happening” series. Rapidly changing frames, unpredictable twists and the story keep you alive from the start to end. Plots are really good for almost all the seasons. One season is a day and one episode is an hour. How much could happen within a day? You’d find everything upside down at the end of the day. The main character is a CTU agent who’s devoted to protect his country. The series runs through 9 days of his life, but feels like a lifetime. 9 Seasons

12. Stranger things – If I say this series is excellent, that also maybe an understatement. I loved it that much. The curiosity and suspense it creates through out the show are simply awesome. I actually felt sad when it ended. The story is created around a kid who was trapped in a parallel dimension. 1 Season