Food for thought: Of slippers and space flights
In northern Indonesia, a fifteen-year old has been arrested for stealing an old pair of white sandals from a boarding house used by the police. He is on trial now and can be imprisoned for up to five years if found ‘guilty!’ To protest this atrocious confinement, Indonesians, across the islands of the archipelago, have responded by dropping off every worn out sandal they can find/ spare at every which police station they can.
In the USA, for 200,000 dollars each, you can now sign up to travel on an up-down space flight by a commercial craft. Nearly 500 passengers have paid up to board a rocket-ship to space beyond the atmosphere, experience about five minutes of weightlessness there, and be back. [They also have the option of getting their pictures taken with the curvature of the earth in the background.] The entire journey is expected to take about two and half hours. The flights are likely to be operational by next Christmas.
Food for the palate: Split green gram dal with vegetables
Cook ½ a cup of split green gram till soft and squishy. Grate a carrot, cut up a cucumber into tiny pieces and keep aside. In a pan, heat a teaspoon of oil, add a teaspoon each of mustard seeds, cumin seeds and split black gram, a pinch asafetida, a few curry leaves [cut into bits], 4 red chillis. When mustard splutters/ gram browns, add the vegetables, stir fry for a few minutes, add cooked gram, ½ a teaspoon of turmeric and salt to taste. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Eat with rice or bread.