25.8.14

Travel | Munnar pt.1 - Terrace Greens Resorts, Mattupetty Dam



I teased you all with some phone photos from my Munnar trip earlier, & now it's time to write a little more about my experience. I took a trip there for three days in the end of May. I'll be the first to admit that other than the fact that it was in Kerala I knew very little else about the place. I soon found that it was a hill station known for sprawling tea plantations & as my trip grew nearer, the excitement kept building up. It was the first trip I was going on solo, but as all of my reservations & bookings were taken care of my Thomas Cook & Sterling Holidays I wasn't nervous in the least bit.
Munnar isn't the most easily accessibly destination (all of the best places aren't) & there are a few different ways to get there. As I was travelling by flight, I had to go to Kochi & then take a car from there. Kochi was unbearably hot & muggy, much like Mumbai at the end of May but as we drove higher & deeper into the hills it got so much cooler. The driver kindly stopped at a waterfall along the way & I got to snack on some raw mango, a yummy snack that is sold at a lot of the tourist spots in Kerala. I napped for the later part of the drive & when I awoke I was greeted by the sight of hills covered in tea plantations as covered in a very dense fog. It was by far one of the most beautiful sights I had ever seen in my life. The weather too was so cool, pleasant & clean that I couldn't believe it was May. Getting back to Mumbai after the trip was such a disappointment.
I stayed at the Munnar Terrace Greens resort which was at the top of the hill. It's a beautiful, minimal property. They don't have hundreds of different activities to keep you occupied, the property is all about sitting back, unwinding & taking in the surroundings. My room had a wonderful view of the hills too. I made a few short videos with some of the highlights of my trip - the first one is above, do watch it & let me know what you think!


Look out for the next post where I will tell you more about my trip & how I planned what I wanted to see. And do subscribe to my YouTube channel (click the red button just below the video! :)) because I post videos on my channel before they're on the blog. 



23.8.14

You Can Never Have Enough Shoes (Ever)



So many famous people from Imelda Marcos to Mariah Carey have gained fame (& some notoriety!) for their expansive & enviable shoe collections in addition to their political & singing careers. You see, deep down inside most of us are shoe obsessives - whether we'd like to admit it or not.
Shoes aren't just something meant to protect your feet while walking outdoors... they serve so many more purposes, from making a long walk more comfortable to completing a stylish outfit. The shoes that you wear can really reflect your personality.
I've loved shoes ever since I was very little. My mom wasn't a shoe person & besides she preferred flats, but I loved posing in my aunt's black pumps, even though they were about 7 sizes too large for me. I still remember how excited I was when my mom took me to buy my yearly Christmas shoes, my first pair of heeled sandals, I remember how much I loved the delicate pink beaded pumps I wore on my first holy communion, & my best friend complimenting my sneakers on sports day. A good pair of shoes can truly help you feel like a million bucks.
Sneakers, running shoes, flip flops, loafers, wedges & stilettos - most women have specifics shoes for every outfit & occasion (I know I do, at least). A mismatched or out of place pair of shoes can even make a very chic outfit look dull & a pair of simple & classy black pumps can pull a tshirt & pair of jeans together in a very stylish way.
I love doing my shoe shopping online. There are many websites that stock shoes in India but I prefer Yebhi because they have the largest collection. And not to mention, an abundance of Yebhi coupons means big savings every single time.
Although I love me some new shoes, the Yebhi coupons also help me save money on clothing & home wares - what's not to love? Recently I've turned into a sneaker head & wedge sneakers are the next on my list of 'shoes I must own'.



7.8.14

Origin of Macaroons

coconut macaroons
Macaroon’s are common at Passover gatherings, and as tasty treats all year long. They are small in shape, and circular. The original recipe called for dough made from ground almonds, but recipes have been made using coconut as well. Sugar and egg whites are also added, and the balls of dough are cooked on sheets of rice paper or on a baking tray.

Macaroons likely date back to the 9th century, in an Italian monastery. The monks there began making a pastry that they carried with them to France, where they chose to settle down with a commune of pastry chefs and French monks. The story goes that there were two women seeking asylum there, and that they managed to pay for their room and board through selling handmade macaroons they baked. They became colloquially known as “The Macaroon Sisters,” and recipes of their creations began to appear in cookbooks in the 18th century.

Italian Jews adopted the macaroon because it used egg whites instead of flour to leaven. It’s a food that Jewish people are able to eat during the eight-day Passover celebration. It eventually made its way to other Jewish people in Europe, where it found popularity all year long.

In North America, the macaroon is commercially made. It’s a moist and sweet cake that is sometimes dipped in chocolate for added flavor. The French have a version that is also common in the Western world. It’s a light cookie with a flavored filling. This article was written by Phineas Upham.

About the Author: Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phineas Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Phineas on his LinedIn page.