When it comes to matters of the kitchen or anything related to cooking, I prefer experimenting with the oven or the Convection function on the microwave. So when a friend offers to let you hover over her shoulder while she bakes, I’m all for it. And not just because there’s a cake at the end of it all!
As Pari works towards her dream of setting up a bakery in Switzerland, she currently bakes for customers from her home and is a “home entrepreneur”, somewhat like me. ( I’m totally moving to Switzerland once Pari sets up her bakery there – Interlaken would be ideal because who doesn’t like skinny-dipping in freezing water! A girl can dream. )
Hanging out with her at her home reminds me of a Monica-Rachel relationship from Friends. Bordering on OCD anyone? Everything is perfect. And she has a cute terrace garden where she tends to seasonal pots of vegetables and spices. ( Another skill I’m jealous of – the fingers are always green at Pari’s home! )
She usually sings or at least hums along while she bakes – she claims it adds that special something to what comes out of the oven and I’m leaning towards agreeing with that. Of course, being trained in classical music helps – she is, I’m not. I think maybe her vegetable garden also grows really well because of the sounds of beautiful music streaming from the windows. Sounds like such an idyllic place to spend time at. And considering it’s in the middle of Delhi, even harder to believe.
Pari and I are two very different people. I’m perpetually confused with being ambitious and still wanting to stay grounded and wanting to be famous but not wanting to give up regular life, etc. And at least to me, Pari seems like she has it down so well. She effortlessly combines her traditional values ( Oh the arguments we have! ) with her big city ambitions. She’s the quintessential Indian girl and it boggles my mind. It’s great to spend a day with her because I feel completely refreshed with all the conversation and the cake aroma and the stuffed tummy to boot.
The last time we met, she had decided to bake red velvet cupcakes. I told her I’d give her company only if there was butter-cream to top the cupcakes. And cold coffee. She’s a genius whipping up all the goodies so I only had to ask. Of course I spent most of the time sprawled on her floor-futon while she literally twirled around the dining / kitchen area. When she moved fast enough, it was almost like flowers swaying – she was wearing this tunic / trouser combo with an Indian / floral print on it. She has this rug with an uneven texture and I love raking it with my toes and as I sat doing that, she passed me a teeny tiny tub of butter-cream, which I then obviously literally inhaled. She knows me well.
She talks about getting a pet dog but she hasn’t locked down on a date yet. Until she takes the plunge, I’m staying put about my pet-decisions as well. She has way more patience with everything than I ever will. It is wonderful to watch her bake and sing and the banter is endless. Spending time with her is therapeutic even though it’s a full day – because it’s a full day for her – I just sit around and dawdle.
I’m reminiscing about Pari because there’s so much in my life that I have been wanting to write about and share. Just posting photographs on the blog is no longer good enough or satisfying for me – there needs to be more. I’m happy to introduce some characters from my life and spend some time writing. Trying something different. Cheers to more!