Thursday, January 23, 2014

Three Beautiful Things Thursday: aquariums, biryani perfection, and doodling

One. Maybe its because I've lived in Atlanta for over a decade so this is home and maybe one's home is never exactly exotic or cool to oneself [unless you live in Kuai. Or Fiji. I imagine even boring Sundays lounging in PJs is at least sort of exotic if you live there] but I found it slightly bizarre for Atlanta to be listed as one of the top 50 places in the world to visit in 2014. Not top 50 in Georgia. Or Southeastern United States. The world. Yep, according to the list, we are cooler than Nepal. While you can color me skeptical on whoever made this list, one of the Atlanta highlights listed? The Georgia Aquarium. We have season passes and go any chance we get, which isn't often enough. This past Monday was our first time going with not one but two walking tots. Musa has been walking for all of three weeks now but now that he knows how to use his legs he doesn't want to stop. Ever. Including at the hustling bustling aquarium. This made for an interesting trip as he's new to the art of walking and thus mostly walks like a drunk person trying to hail a taxi cab. But when we got the pacific fish exhibit with fish of every color from floor to ceiling, he stopped. He's been to the aquarium before but as he has a memory akin to the guppies swimming before him, it may as well have been his very first time and his reaction? Gobsmacked.


And while I find these fish, the whale sharks and sting rays fascinating, it's the small jellyfish display in an alcove that moves me most. Something about seeing these creatures mesmerizes me and it never gets old. As I said on my instagram feed, while there's a fine line between doubt and faith- something about seeing these jellyfish brings me the stillness and peace only certainty of divine invention can bring. So in a nutshell jellyfish renew my faith in God. Strange but beautiful nonetheless.


Two. I'm not a perfectionist but when it comes to my cooking I take great pride in serving a meal that I know I made the best I could. While I liked my Hyderabadi kacha gosht biryani each time I made it I found myself notating after each batch things I could've improved, but now? After batch #5, it's official! I have perfected the art of making hyderabadi kachha gosht biryani. And by perfect I mean that when I eat it I think I could serve this to a guest without worrying they'll hate it. [Granted they may infact hate it but at least I'm not worried since I did the best job I possibly could.] This biryani dish isn't the easiest dish and certainly not the most orderly dish as it fills all my counters with pots and pans and mixing bowls and requires six dedicated hours to make properly [and let us not speak of the clean up] but I think its because it was the one dish I thought I could never get right, that I get endless fascination when I make it and see that it- you know- works.  I tweaked and updated the recipe here and as we finish up our latest batch, I'm thankful to have kept on keeping on to finally achieve biryani bliss.


Three. As the header of this blog bears witness to, I love doodling. A few months ago my friend e-mailed me an article about how doodling helps you focus. She sat next to me in many a work meeting where I sketched and swirled circles and flowers and interesting owls until I filled my notepad completely. I can attest to the increased-focus-aspect of doodling as somehow the act of doodling inadvertently got me interested, every so slightly. . . in football. Sitting next to the spouse while he watched a game a few weeks ago, I began doodling to escape the game but ended up following every interception and touchdown and. . . liking it?
the doodle that inspired an actual watching of football. The Aggies won. Twas lovely.
Since then I've watched approximately four other games and if you know me, you know this is quite abnormal, but there you have it. To be clear you'll never see me switching on the game when left to my own devices but in the downtime of my day I've rediscovered the lost pleasures of doodling and an inadvertent ever-so-slight interest in the football playing on the television along the way.

Walking tots, spiritual jellyfish, biryani and doodling- a beautiful Thursday all in all. Hope you and yours are having a beautiful Thursday as well.

2 comments:

Cylinda said...

Oooooo, you made that watching the Aggie game! You realize, of course, that this means that I MUST have you doodling your heart out during each A&M game next season! (You'll never find a more superstitious lot that sports fans) :-)

And that first photo of Musa melted. my. heart. Seriously, my heart is in a puddle on the floor. Quite a mess and all your fault.

Mmmmmm, biryani. My expectations for trying this dish are now through the roof! (Again, all your fault).


Autumn said...

Awesome photo of Musa, and what a cool doodle! :0)

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