Thursday, November 25, 2010

Travelling long distance by bus

As someone with both the experience of delaying buses as well as missing them by a 24 hour interval, I feel emboldened enough to tell you what to do to travel well:
  1. Keep a warm jacket: Most Volvo buses nowadays, are either too cold, or getting there. The other issue, is that some of them offer you blankets, which might actually be a mini zoo for animals not even named yet. This also means that you should ideally wear shoes and long pants, to prevent the zoo considering you as dinner.
  2. Keep the number of your bus driver/conductor, so you know whether they are going to be early or late. Also helps if you are going to be late, and need them to keep the bus waiting :p
  3. Stay away from fizzy drinks, and an empty stomach. The claustrophobic nature of most Volvos, need no incentive to make you empty your guts out, so don't try liquid diets.
  4. Never ask your driver what time you will reach, he will never tell you the truth. Look around for seasoned passengers.
  5. Turn off your phone around 9 p.m. so that you have enough charge, just in case your bus gets stuck(the bridge overflows, the tyre bursts, or the axle breaks, who knows? ), and your loved ones are trying to frantically contact you. Believe me, at that time, Twitter does not help. Especially resist the temptation to keep music playing on your phone the whole night, even if it's just radio.
  6. Always tell the driver when you are out of the bus, whether you are alone or not. You don't want your luggage reaching before you.
  7. Look for food:There are certain places like Hotel Khalsa Palace, where you can get adventurous enough to try the prawn and whiskey, but otherwise, beware... Dal Fry and Roti are usually your safest bet. While everyone will usually run towards the front of the bus for their food and drink, sometimes, like at Kudal on the way back from Goa, it pays to look behind the bus, for awesome egg bhurji and tea.
  8. Runaway from overzealous rickshaw drivers: Once the bus reaches the destination, stay away from the first rickshaw driver you see, usually he is looking to fleece you for double, to cover his waiting for the bus. Running rickshaws on the road, are usually cheaper. Stick to the meter, where possible. Again, watch what the veterans do.
  9. Careful of the last seat: If you happen to be given the rollercoaster seats, the last seat, at-least try to save your luggage from the same, smashed up fate. Keep your camera bag or laptop bag, towards the front of the bus, so that you don't reach your destination, realising that your valuables are more banged up than you are.
  10. Look for local food: If you are in Delhi, make sure that you actually take food from the local hand cart, like alu tikki, it just might be the best you have ever had.
  11. Eat before you travel, in case the bus reaches the food point after your usual dinner schedule.
  12. If your bus, like the KSRTC, provides seatbelts, wear them. They usually have a good reason for being there, like if you get the first seat, or if your driver uses to change F1 wheels.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Boiling an Egg

I looked around, but it is surprising that most people don't realise that actually boiling the egg is the easiest part.

Getting it not to crack before and during boiling, is the toughest.
So here are my big tips:
  1. Keep the temperature setting in your fridge on Low, meaning the warmest setting. If you keep the temperature high, there is a danger the eggs will crack, and the yolk will freeze. Then you will have to settle for fried eggs, DOH!
  2. Choose a vessel which can take around 4 eggs back to back. This will ensure that it ain't too small, or too big (wastage of water).
  3. Now first fill the vessel with water such that the eggs are fully covered. If the eggs are not fully covered with water, you will get eggs which are fully cooked below the level of the water, and raw above the level of the water.
  4. If you are taking the eggs out of the fridge, leave them to reach room temperature in the vessel, for 5-10 minutes. If you directly boil them they are more likely to crack.
  5. Now keep the eggs on simmer for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Now boil the eggs for around 1 minute. This will give you nice egg yolks which are not too hard. If you want them harder, boil them for around 2 minutes.
  7. If the water overflows the vessel, then you know one of the eggs have cracked.
  8. Leave the eggs to cool, or pour cold water to cool them down.
  9. Tap them slightly all round, and then peel. This will ensure that the eggs are undamaged.
  10. You can try boiling them on a slow flame till they start knocking.
  11. Cracking boiled eggs should be fun, as long as you can get an even crack all around. Here is one idea
You might say "Werner, this is a lot tougher than I am used to." But the truth is, this keeps you way safer, because I have eaten under-boiled and cracked eggs, and believe me, that ain't pretty.

Labels: , , , , ,

Real Time Web Analytics